Govt plans to pay maternity leave to entrepreneurs

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The new law will see Dutch female entrepreneurs receive EUR 1,335 per month and allow them to go on longer maternity leave.

17 April 2008

AMSTERDAM - The Dutch parliament and Social Affairs minister Piet Hein Donner discussed a new law on Wednesday under which pregnant Dutch entrepreneurs will be entitled to receive EUR 1,335 per month.

The government stipend will be paid for a minimum of 16 weeks. The law is expected to go into effect as of 1 July.

The money should compensate the women's loss of their habitual income to enable them to take maternity leave.

Under Dutch law, female employees are legally entitled to a minimum of 16 weeks of maternity leave. During this time they are paid 100 per cent of their regular income. Dutch law obligates pregnant employees to stop work 4 to 6 weeks before they are due to give birth.

Until now female entrepreneurs has not enjoyed any maternity leave arrangements. As private insurance for maternity leave has been too expensive for most entrepreneurs, many Dutch female entrepreneurs continue to work until a very advanced stage of their pregnancy and often return to work soon after giving birth.

Under the proposed law, women who have worked a minimum of 20 hours per week, will receive the equivalent of Dutch minimum wage, currently set at EUR 1,335 gross per month.

Female entrepreneurs who worked less, will receive an income depending on their income of the preceding year.

[dpa / Expatica]

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