Monday, May 27, 2024

Seminar Dutch Law and Embassies

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Diplomat Magazine
Diplomat Magazine
DIPLOMAT MAGAZINE “For diplomats, by diplomats” Reaching out the world from the European Union First diplomatic publication based in The Netherlands. Founded by members of the diplomatic corps on June 19th, 2013. "Diplomat Magazine is inspiring diplomats, civil servants and academics to contribute to a free flow of ideas through an extremely rich diplomatic life, full of exclusive events and cultural exchanges, as well as by exposing profound ideas and political debates in our printed and online editions." Dr. Mayelinne De Lara, Publisher

By Roy Lie Atjam

Russell Advocaten, a corporate full-service law firm in Amsterdam, and Diplomat Magazine organized their annual seminar-workshop for embassies and consulates. The law firm has decades of experience in dealing with legal queries of embassies. This time around the seminar was held in The Hague on 7 November 2022.

The diplomatic community turned out in their numbers. Some Ambassadors had chosen to attend the seminar themself.

Dutch Law for Diplomats by Russell Advocaten and Diplomat Magazine.

Topics discussed by the Embassy Desk specialists, Jan Dop, Head of the Embassy Desk, Priscilla  de Leede, specialist in Employment Law and Reinier W.L. Russell, Managing Partner at Russell Advocaten were:

  • Employee illness
  • Labour law and dismissal in the Netherlands
  • Personnel handbook/code of conduct
  • Employee participation/Works council

These topics are of significant importance to diplomatic mission. Utilizing practical illustrations and cases presented by the audience, the specialist lawyers of Russell Advocaten passed on valuable information.

The Ambassador of Iraq, H.E. Mr. Nazar Issa Abdulhadi Al-Khirullah, the Ambassador of Tunisia, H.E. Mr. Slim Ghariani, the Ambassador of Algeria, H.E. Ms. Salima Abdelhak and the Ambassador of Yemen, H.E. Ms. Sahar Ghanem.

Conclusion: Dutch labour law is applicable to Embassies in the Netherlands.

A. Employee illness

• Comply with obligations regarding sick employees → a.o. involving the Arbo/company doctor

• Financial sanctions in case of non-compliance

• In principle, no dismissal of a sick employee during the first 2 years of illness

Reinier W.L. Russell, Managing Partner Russell Advocaten, Josué Roberto Liévano Paz, Counsellor Embassy of El Salvador and H.E Mr Arnoldo Brenes Castro, Ambassador of Costa Rica.

B. Dismissal law

• Reasonable ground required for a dismissal. Please note: transition compensation + fair compensation

• In general, sending States cannot invoke immunity in civil proceedings before the Dutch court → only immunity

regarding the enforcement of judgements of the Dutch court (seizure)

Dutch Law for Diplomats by Russell Advocaten and Diplomat Magazine.

C. Personnel handbook / Code of conduct

• Collective rules with which employees must comply, for example regarding work clothes, rules on reporting sick etc.

• Proof for employers in dismissal proceedings

D. Employee participation / Works council

• Mandatory for large Embassies (and companies)

• Specific statutory rights.

Dutch Law for Diplomats by Russell Advocaten and Diplomat Magazine.

Those registered for the seminar will receive a link to the presentation. This seminar about the Dutch employment law, specifically the rules regarding dismissal and illness of local staff,  was by all means a great success. Participants listened attentively, hardly anyone left during the break.

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