Date of publication: 05/12/2017
With the draft program act of 6 November 2017 which is expected to enter into force on 1 January 2018, the Belgian legislator expands the scope of the flexi-jobs in the catering industry to other industries such as a.o. the retail industry (Joint Committee 201 and Joint Committee 311).
The system of flexi-jobs provides the possibility for employees who have a “main job” elsewhere, to take up an additional “tax-free” employment as a flexi-job employee. Further, pensioners will also be able to execute flexi-jobs on top of their statutory pension.
The salary which the employees are entitled to in the framework of such flexi-jobs is not subject to employees’ social security contributions or taxes which results in net amounts granted to the concerned employees.
From an employer’s perspective, the issued salary will only be subject to a special employer’s social security contribution of 25%, implying a favorable employer’s tax treatment as well.
Which conditions must be complied with?
To be able to apply the system of flexi-jobs as an employer, certain conditions must be complied with:
1. The concerned employee must already be employed by one or multiple other employers with an employment contract which at minimum is equal to 4/5th of a fulltime job (of a reference person within the sector) during the third quarter preceding the employment in a flexi-job (this will not apply to pensioners);
2. The employee fulfills the following conditions at the moment that he starts the flexi-job:
- The employee is not employed with an employment contract of minimum 4/5th of a fulltime job with the employer where he will actually perform the flexi-job;
- The period that the employee would perform the flexi-job is not covered by an indemnity in lieu of notice or dismissal compensation payment due by the employer where he will actually perform the flexi-job;
- The period that the employee would perform the flexi-job is not covered by a notice period.
3. Moreover, the employee and the employer must, prior to the start of the flexi-job, conclude a written framework agreement which must contain certain mandatory information such as a brief description of the function(s) which the employee will execute.
4. Finally, the employer must use a system to register and track the correct start and end time of the employment of each separate flexi-job employee (i.e. via either a specific Dimona declaration or an alternative system of attendance registration (ASA)). Non-compliance with the registration obligation could result in penalties.
How does this affect your business?
The implementation of flexi-jobs in the retail as from 1 January 2018 provides employers with the possibility to work more flexible and to e.g. appeal to flexi-job employees in case of urgency or peak periods while applying a favorable social security and tax regime.
Please bear in mind that certain formalities must nevertheless be fulfilled in order to legally introduce the flexi-job regime.