January 4, 2016
What changes in 2016? a round-up of new laws and taxes
A number of new laws and changes to the tax system come into effect on January 1, 2016. Here’s a round-up of the main ones: Workers will have more rights to work shorter hours and to work from home and employers may only refuse if they have very pressing reasons. The minimum wage for an adult (22+) will rise to €1,524.60 per month, or €70.37 a day. For an 18-year-old, the minimum wage is €32.02 per day. The second and third tax bands have been widened. The maximum tax rate of 52% will kick in at €66,422 and a new lower rate of 40.4% will cover income from €19,923 to €66,421. The maximum salary for new appointments in the public sector is €179,000 a year.
Unemployment benefit will be cut from 38 months to a maximum of 24 months between January 2016 and April 2019. People claiming welfare benefits will have to improve their language skills or face benefit cuts.
Mortgages will be restricted to 102% of the value of the property. The income limit to qualify for social housing rises to €35,739. The maximum rent for social housing remains unchanged at €710.68 per month. The Nationale Hypotheekgarantie – a guarantee to bail out home owners who cannot pay their mortgage – will be cut to €225,000 in July. Parents can give their children up to €53,016 tax free to help them buy a house or pay for an expensive college course.
Companies and government organisations which process personal data must inform the privacy watchdog CPB if their security has been breached. In some cases they must also inform the victims. Shopkeepers have to charge for plastic bags. Road tax will be scrapped for electric cars. Hybrids and cars with low emissions will pay 50% of the normal tariff. People with company cars will pay tax over 25% of the catalogue value of the vehicle if they drive more than 500 kilometres privately a year. The cost of an integration test for people coming to the Netherlands to get married or as part of a family reunion is being cut from €350 to €150. This stems from a court ruling. The official retirement age will rise to 65 years and six months.
Sources: Belastingdienst.nl, RTL news, DutchNews.nl archives