Virginia, US

Oct 29 2020

Minimum Salary Changes Announced

Belgium, Czech Republic, Ireland, Netherlands
Belgium

The minimum salary level will increase in Belgium by 1.23-1.94% on January 1, 2021 as follows: 

Flanders (1.94% increase)

  • Executives (including managers under the forthcoming EU Intra-Company Transferee (ICT) Permit): From EUR 68,314 to EUR 69,638
  • EU Blue Card applicants: From EUR 51,235 to EUR 52,229
  • Specialists and trainees under the EU ICT Permit and for highly-skilled permit applicants: From EUR 42,696 to EUR 43,524
  • Locally hired staff under 30 years old: From EUR 34,156.80 to EUR 34,819.20

 

Brussels (1.23% increase):

  • Executives: From EUR 71,521 to EUR 72,399  
  • EU Blue Card applicants and managers under the EU ICT permit: From EUR 55,431 to EUR 56,111
  • Specialists under the EU ICT Permit: From EUR 44,344 to EUR 44,889       
  • Trainees under the EU ICT Permit: From EUR 27,715 to  EUR 28,056                       
  • Highly-skilled permit applicants: From EUR 42,869 to EUR 43,395          

 

Wallonia (1.23% increase):

  • Executives: From EUR 71,521 to EUR 72,399  
  • EU Blue Card applicants: From EUR 55,431 to EUR 56,112
  • Highly-skilled permit applicants: From EUR 42,869 to EUR 43,395
  • The Wallonia region will publish salary requirements for managers, specialists and trainees under the EU ICT Permit upon publication of the executing royal decree that would allow EU ICT Permit issuance. The publication date for this royal decree is not yet known.

 

  • Currency. Employers must guarantee the salary in EUR regardless of payroll location and/or exchange rate fluctuations. The exchange rate at the time of publication of this alert is 1 EUR to 1.08 USD.

  • Compliance. Employers of foreign nationals seeking to obtain or renew work authorization on or after January 1, 2021 must increase foreign nationals’ minimum salaries to comply with the new rule. Immigration applications that do not meet the minimum salary will be rejected.

  • Pending applications. Employers of foreign nationals with pending work authorization applications as of January 1, 2021 must increase foreign nationals’ minimum salaries to comply with the new rule, and must notify the authorities of the salary increase. Immigration applications that do not meet the minimum salary will be refused.

  • Benefits and allowances. Benefits and allowances generally cannot be included in the minimum salary calculation. In exceptional cases, allowances can be included provide they are: (1) a remuneration for services, (2) guaranteed and fixed, (3) taxable, and (4) indicated in the employee’s pay slip.

 

Czech Republic
  • The national minimum wage will increase 4.1% on January 1, 2021, to CZK 15,200 per month from CZK 14,600 per month.  

  • Affected categories. The increase affects the Employee Card and Work Permit. The EU Blue Card is subject to a separate threshold updated mid-April. 

  • Formalities. The amount must be specified in the employment contract. 

  • Benefits and allowances. Benefits and bonuses are not included in the calculation. 

  • Minimum subsistence amount. Long-term visa applicants must each hold 15 times the minimum subsistence amount (currently CZK 2,490) for the first month of stay, and twice the minimum subsistence amount for every consecutive month of stay. I.e., for six months of stay, applicants require CZK 62,250 per person. Applicants under 18 need only show half this amount. Long-term business visa applicants must hold 50 times the minimum subsistence amount per month, currently CZK 124,500, for the full one-year visa validity. The full required amount must be available in a bank account when filing the application.  

  • Compliance. In case of threshold changes, the new amount applies to current employees, pending applications, and new or renewal applications. 

 

Ireland

The minimum wage will increase in Ireland by 1% on January 1, 2021, to EUR 10.20 per hour from EUR 10.10 per hour.

  • Affected categories. The increase affects the short-term Atypical Working Scheme (AWS) and Intra-Company Transferee Permit (for the latter, the home base salary should meet the national minimum wage); but does not affect the Critical Skills Employment Permit (CSEP) or General Employment Permit.

  • Currency. Employers must guarantee the salary in EUR regardless of payroll location and/or exchange rate fluctuations. The exchange rate at the time of publication of this alert is 1 EUR to 1.08 USD.

  • Compliance. Employers of foreign nationals seeking to obtain or renew AWS or ICT work authorization on or after January 1, 2021 must increase foreign nationals’ salaries to comply with the new rule. Immigration applications that do not meet the minimum salary will be refused.

  • Pending applications. Employers of foreign nationals with pending AWS or ICT work authorization applications as of January 1, 2021 must increase foreign nationals’ salaries to comply with the new rule. Immigration applications that do not meet the minimum salary will be refused.

  • Benefits and allowances. Inclusion of allowances in the salary calculation varies between permit types.

Netherlands

Minimum salary levels in the Netherlands will increase by 3% on January 1, 2021, as below.  

  • Short-term work permit: EUR 5,132.16 gross/month, up from EUR 4,981 gross/month. Under the short-term highly skilled migrant work permit, for applicants under 30 EUR 3,762.72 gross/month will suffice, up from EUR 3,652 gross/month. Additionally, short-term highly skilled migrant work permit applicants must receive a home base salary at or above Dutch minimum wage (indexed twice a year). 

  • EU Intra-Company Transfer (ICT) Permit, applicants over 30: salary comparable to local workers in a similar position, or at least EUR 4,752 gross/month, up from EUR 4,612 gross/month.  

  • EU Intra-Company Transfer (ICT) Permit, applicants under 30: salary comparable to local workers in a similar position, or at least EUR 3,484 gross/month, up from EUR 3,381 gross/month.  

  • Highly Skilled Migrants, applicants over 30: EUR 4,752 gross/month, up from EUR 4,612 gross/month. 

  • Highly Skilled Migrants, applicants under 30: EUR 3,484 gross/month, up from EUR 3,381 gross/month. 

  • Graduates and job search permit holders, changing status to a Highly Skilled Migrant permit: EUR 2,497 gross/month, up from EUR 2,423 gross/month.  

  • Blue Card: EUR 5,568 gross/month, up from EUR 5,403 gross/month 

  • Compliance. The new amounts do not apply to current permit holders. Renewal applicants and individuals changing status must however meet updated salary requirements when filing the renewal or change of status application.  

  • Pending applications. The new thresholds apply to applications filed in 2021. Applications filed in 2020 may continue to meet the 2020 salary requirements.  

  • Benefits/allowances. Benefits and allowances can be included for long-term permit applications, provided that they are fixed and guaranteed; mentioned or specified in the assignment letter or employment contract; received in money, not in kind; and paid on a monthly basis. Holiday allowance; value of payment in kind; and non-regular pay elements such as overtime allowances and performance bonuses may not be included. For short-term intra-company transfer work permit applications, benefits and allowance cannot be included.  

  • Audits. Frequent applications exactly on the threshold may trigger questions and audits. 

  • Currency. Employers are required to guarantee that the salary meets the threshold in EUR, regardless of payroll location and/or exchange rate fluctuations. For EU ICT Permit Trainee applications, amounts must be indicated in approximate EUR amounts in the assignment letter. ​