THE NETHERLANDS: The great majority of victims of occupational injuries or diseases are apparently not compensated

Home > The news of EUROGIP and occupational risks in Europe > THE NETHERLANDS: The great majority of victims of occupational injuries or diseases are apparently not compensated

This is the belief of a research worker from Amsterdam University, Wim Eshuis, who recently worked on a PhD thesis entitled “Compensation for employees, a major project: toward a new approach to damage and the prevention of occupational injuries and diseases in enterprises”. According to him, although at present 25,000 OI/OD victims sustain financial damage, only 4,000 can claim any compensation. This is partly due to the fact that there has no longer been any specific occupational health and safety insurance since 1966 and victims are entitled to compensation only under the disease and disability insurance part of the social security system.

To obtain compensation for the financial loss due to their OI/OD, employees must sue their employer for liability, which in practice represents a real barrier. Employees are afraid of losing their job and fear the slow pace of legal proceedings. Very often they claim no compensation, or do so only after being dismissed or after having obtained compensation for a work disability relating to the disease. That is why patient organizations, trade unions and the Minister of Social Affairs and Employment call for the restoration of a specific system of compensation for employees in the event of OIs/ODs. 

To conclude his thesis, the researcher considers that a more significant role should be given to certain players, in particular OH&S personnel and the employees, regarding the prevention and evaluation of OIs/ODs. Finally, Wim Eshuis calls for the setting up of a specific group insurance or for the insertion of a special provision in collective labour agreements, providing for the employee’s right to compensation without having to come into conflict with his (her) employer for this purpose and faster payment of said compensation: “This measure takes the victims into consideration while promoting their rehabilitation. Because dragged-out litigation is not good for health”.

Discover other news

Community news


BusinessEurope’s position on teleworking and the right to disconnect

On 25 June, BusinessEurope responded to the European Commission's consultation on the right to disconnect, pointing out that over-regulation could hamper the growth and benefits of teleworking and arguing for minimal EU intervention, leaving Member States, social partners and companies to develop their own policies.



GERMANY: The importance of reporting traumatic events at work

A colleague falls off a ladder. A nurse is stopped and threatened. A train driver hits a cyclist crossing the tracks at high speed. These incidents can cause trauma and feelings of fear, powerlessness and guilt. They need to be reported in order to provide support for those affected.



AUSTRIA: More accidents at work and on the way to work in 2023

According to data published by the Austrian Social insurance for occupational injuries (AUVA) in mid-June, 145,748 claims were registered last year, broken down as follows 29,866 accidents (at work and and students), 13,062 commuting accidents and 2,820 cases of occupational diseases. While the number of accidents (at work and on the way to work) has increased, the number of occupational diseases has decreased compared to 2022.