ABU-Fair Employment code

What can you expect of the private employment agency?

The private employment agency that offers you work is certified by the ABU. This means that the private employment agency provides for an independent check of its correct application of laws and regulations. The ABU private employment agency also ensures that you are clearly and correctly informed about working and living in the Netherlands. It does this together with the recruitment agency in your country of origin. Apart from correctly following laws and regulations, you can expect the following of a private employment agency that is certified by the ABU:

Health and safety: your health and safety have the highest priority. ABU private employment agencies comply with all laws and regulations and during the coronavirus pandemic, also apply the guidelines of the ABU Coronavirus Safety Protocol for Labour Migrants. This protocol is continually updated during the different phases of the coronavirus pandemic. The private employment agency informs you of the current guidelines.

Recruitment and selection: the private employment agency ensures that the recruitment agency in your country of origin applies the guidelines of the ABU Fair Recruitment Charter. Your recruiter will share this charter and the accompanying information and explanatory materials.

Contract: the private employment contract and the accompanying documents are available for you both in Dutch and in your own national language.

Wages: in comparison with Dutch agency workers, you will receive equal pay for equal work, in accordance with the rules of the collective labour agreement (CLA).

Registration: the recruitment agency and the private employment agency will explain the registration rules in the Netherlands to you. Under Dutch law, you are required to register correctly in the government Personal Records Database (BRP). The recruitment agency will provide you with the first information on the differences between the two registration possibilities in the Netherlands: registration as a non- resident (RNI) and registration as a resident in the BRP; If you comply with the RNI rules but would prefer to register as a resident in the BRP, ask the municipal authority in the municipality where you will live if this is possible. Not all municipal authorities make this possible. The private employment agency can provide you with further assistance with the registration rules.

Accommodation: the recruitment agency will give you the initial necessary information about living in the Netherlands. You will be shown an animated video about this. Your recruiter will explain the accommodation possibilities to you. You will also receive information on the conditions if you opt to have the private employment agency arrange accommodation for you. You may also look for accommodation yourself. If you ask the private employment agency to arrange accommodation for you, the following information is important for you:

Accommodation arranged by the private employment agency is certified by the SNF organisation. This means that important elements of the accommodation are checked. Information on SNF certificates and the SNF complaints portal is available at https://www.normeringflexwonen.nl/information-for-residents

The private employment agency can charge you for the use of accommodation. The charges will not be higher than the actual costs of the accommodation. The private employment agency may deduct a maximum of 25% of the statutory minimum wage from your pay slip for this. If you want the costs of the accommodation to be deducted from your pay slip, you can request this via a written authorisation of the private employment agency. If the costs for the use of the accommodation are higher than 25% of the minimum wage, then the part of the costs for the use of the accommodation earned in excess of the minimum wage may also be deducted. You will be told the costs of the accommodation in advance.

If the company where you work cancels the contract with you early, the private employment agency will offer you the possibility of renting the accommodation for at least five more nights. You can ask the private employment agency if you can rent the accommodation for longer.

Because of the housing shortage in the Netherlands, this will not always be possible. ABU private employment agencies that operate in municipalities with housing shortages are asking the municipal authorities and housing organisations to build more certified accommodation. You can always ask the private employment agency for general information on other accommodation possibilities in the region.

Penalties and compensation for damage: the private employment agency can only deduct legal and administrative fines from your pay slip. One example of this is a fine for a traffic offence that you committed. The deduction of other types of fine from the pay slip is forbidden. You can be held liable for damage if you cause damage to the employer or the landlord intentionally or through gross negligence. The maximum compensation for damage is then the actual costs for repairing the damaged object.

Information: together with the recruitment agency, the private employment agency will ensure that you are informed about working and living in the Netherlands before you sign contracts or pre-contracts in your country of origin. The recruitment agency follows the guidelines of the attached ABU Fair Recruitment Charter for that purpose.

Language and integration: in your starting period, the private employment agency will refer you to the available possibilities in the municipality to follow language courses. No every municipality offers language classes.

Complaints: the private employment agency must offer you an accessible complaints procedure. If your recruitment agency and/or private employment agency fails to keep a promise made in this document, you can submit a complaint about this to the private employment agency. If the complaint is not solved, you can also submit it to the ABU reporting centre. In that case, send an e-mail to complaints@abu.nl. In your report, in any event give the name of the recruitment agency and the name of the private employment agency and describe your complaint. The ABU will then address the complaint as soon as possible.


If you want to read the code in your own language, that is possible. Various landing pages have been developed by the ABU for this purpose. Surf via the links below to the right page.


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