Booking.com has announced a large-scale reorganisation, as a result of which many positions will become redundant. In anticipation of this forced termination and redundancy, the company has started offering employees a voluntary leave scheme. The deadline to apply for this scheme closed on 21 October. If you applied for the voluntary leave package, or if your position will be made redundant later on, please continue reading…
Termination due to reorganisation
In the Netherlands, if an employer wishes to terminate your contract based on a reorganisation, it may only do so with either permission from the UWV (Employee Insurance Agency), or with your consent. As the process to request permission from the UWV takes time and incurs costs, employers frequently prefer to reach an agreement for termination by mutual consent via a settlement agreement.
Voluntary leave scheme vs. redundancy
To achieve termination by mutual consent, the employer therefore offers a voluntary leave scheme. Through this scheme, employees who are interested in leaving the company are offered a settlement agreement. However, if an insufficient number of employees accept the voluntary leave scheme, the employer will decide which positions will become redundant – and those employees will also be offered a settlement agreement,
Settlement agreement: the terms and conditions of termination
The settlement agreement contains the terms and conditions under which the employment contract is terminated. As such, it is critical to your future options. These terms and conditions may already exist in a voluntary leave scheme or redundancy plan.
You can choose to accept the terms and conditions fully, to reject them, or to negotiate them.
If you need help, our legal experts can advise you on the terms you are offered and your rights in this situation.
Fixed fee packaged solution for Booking.com workers
GMW lawyers has worked with the expat community in the Netherlands for over 30 years. Over this time we have acquired a great deal of experience in dealing with certain international companies. We have assisted many Booking.com employees, so we know how the company works.
Our team brings this knowledge together in a packaged solution created especially and exclusively for employees of Booking.com whose jobs are at risk due to the current reorganisation.
We have designed this package to address key considerations of Booking.com employees facing termination and are offering it for a fixed fee.
What’s included in the fixed fee package?
The package comprises a review of documents and a written legal advice on your situation, for a fixed fee of EUR 750 excluding office costs and VAT.
1 – Document review
This package includes a review of the following documents:
- Your employment contract and any addendums to it;
- Your most recent six salary slips;
- All your salary slips in the last three years that show bonuses you received,
- The redundancy plan/voluntary leave scheme of Booking.com (if applicable);
- The settlement agreement.
Based on the review of the documents, our lawyers can determine whether the offer Booking.com made is suitable for you or not.
2 – Written legal advice
After reviewing your documents, one of our employment lawyers will send you a written legal advice in English via email. This advice contains:
- An overview of your legal rights;
- Specification of any risks or red flags (alarm signals);
- Suggestions to alter the terms and conditions of the settlement agreement, if necessary;
- Calculation of the transitional payment to which you may be entitled.
Based on this advice, you can make an informed decision on whether to accept Booking.com’s offer, reject it, or negotiate the terms.
Should you require extra advice or assistance, we can also support you with topics including:
- Options within the company (entitlement to options after termination, lapse time, etc.)
- Shares (for instance, whether these should be included in the settlement agreement)
- Bonus (such as complex bonus schemes/ entitlement to bonus if you are exempted from work)
- Visa (consequences for residence/visa if your contract is terminated)
Additional services can be individually selected based on your individual needs and are charged according to our standard hourly rates.
Why choose us?
GMW lawyers has specific expertise regarding employment law for expats in the Netherlands. We understand the challenges that internationals face and the critical impact that work has on other aspects of your life here. Our lawyers are committed to helping you navigate Dutch law and find the best possible solution. Naturally, we can assist you in English.
Our lawyers have specific knowledge of and experience with Booking.com. This means we understand how the company works and we offer advice you can trust.
GMW lawyers is a multidisciplinary law firm, so our expertise crosses multiple areas of law. This allows us to assist you with other arising questions about work, pension, migration, housing and family.
How to get started
Did you apply for the voluntary leave scheme or do you expect to be made redundant? Would you like to know more about our packaged solution for Booking.com employees?
Please contact us by phone, email or via our website. We have a dedicated team of employment law experts who are at your service.