‘Most self-employed people are against compulsory disability insurance’

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NOS Newsyesterday, 07:38

The majority of self-employed entrepreneurs do not want compulsory disability insurance. And if it does come, almost all self-employed people would like to be able to apply for an exemption. This is what the Association of Self-Employed Netherlands (VZN) says after a consultation among the supporters.

“It is therefore of crucial importance for the support base that the possibility to apply for an exemption is really there,” says chairman Cristel van de Ven of the VZN. “We are in favor of a regulation, but do not want a straitjacket.”

Exemption still ‘under investigation’

Minister Van Gennip of Social Affairs and Employment announced several changes in the labor market at the beginning of April. One of these is a compulsory disability insurance for the 1.2 million self-employed persons in our country, which should apply from 2027. At present, one in five self-employed persons has taken out insurance.

Van Gennip said that he will also investigate whether it will also be an option for self-employed persons without employees to receive an exemption, “provided it is feasible, affordable, explainable and can be introduced in time”. These self-employed persons would then have to take out their own, similar private insurance. But Van der Ven is not confident that this option will actually materialise.

“In her research, the minister now looks very classically at what the insurance should look like,” says Van der Ven. “But over the years, more modern ways have also emerged that people feel more comfortable with, such as donation circles and bread funds. They are now also looking at whether they can create a safety net for long-term disability.”

If an uninsured self-employed person becomes incapacitated for work, social assistance is currently the last safety net. According to Van de Ven, it is not clear how many self-employed persons make use of this. The idea is that the compulsory insurance will also apply up to social assistance level.

For many self-employed persons without employees, the costs are an important reason not to take out insurance. These costs are expected to account for about 8 percent of income, up to a maximum of just over 200 euros. That amount is tax deductible.

The VZN has been advocating for some time to extend the waiting time for insured persons to two years, making the insurance cheaper. In Van Gennip’s plan, that is now one year.

The cabinet is expected to announce more details about compulsory insurance next year.

2023-05-25 05:38:42

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