Lifespan Leave-Saving Scheme
If you participate in the Lifespan Leave-Saving Scheme you set aside part of your gross salary each month. The University pays this money into a Lifespan Leave-Saving Scheme account. You can also save using your holiday allowance, annual bonus or other bonuses or incidental salary. You can use the savings from the Lifespan Leave-Saving Scheme to fund unpaid leave at a later date.
If you want to take leave accumulated under the Lifespan Leave-Saving Scheme, you must have been employed by the University for at least one year.
How do I take leave?
- If your manager agrees with your taking leave, you should discuss the financial considerations with your HR department. Discuss the amount you wish to receive during the leave and how much money you will need to withdraw. You should also discuss the consequences for your pension and for benefits (see Lifespan Leave-Saving Scheme and pension accrual).
- Request a withdrawal form from the institution where you have your Lifespan Leave-Saving Scheme account. On the withdrawal form enter the gross sum that should be transferred to the University.
- In addition you have to fill in the University request form in full.
- Hand in the form to your HR department no later than four months before the start of the leave.
- HR sends your withdrawal form to the institution where you have your Lifespan Leave-Saving Scheme account.
Once the transfer has been made, you will receive the money as salary via your payslip after the deduction of payroll tax, Health Care Insurance Act contributions and pension contributions.
How much money can I withdraw?
You decide yourself how much you will be paid. The amount you withdraw may not exceed your salary immediately preceding the leave.
How do I know if my money has been transferred?
The University regularly checks if the money has arrived. The money must have been transferred at least before the first day of the month in which the leave will be taken.
If the transfer has not taken place before the first of the month, you will receive a message from your HR department. You will be asked to contact the institution where you have your Lifespan Leave-Saving Scheme account in order to ensure that the transfer is made.
If the amount in question has still not been transferred to the University after two months, the payment of your lifespan leave will be stopped.
You can find further information about the Lifespan Leave-Saving Scheme on the website of Dutch Taks Administration (only in Dutch).
I have stated that I want to save using my holiday allowance but it is now being deducted from my regular salary. Why is that?
Due to technical reasons, it is only possible to make deductions from your gross monthly salary. However, the right amount of holiday allowance will be adjusted with your salary. This makes the effect the same as you intended.
Can I add my lifespan balance to my retirement pension?
Yes, you can as long as tax legislation permits this and as long as you have room for this in your pension accrual.
Can I combine the Lifespan Lease-Saving Scheme with other University leave regulations?
You cannot use two or more regulations at the same time. You can, however, use regulations consecutively.
How often can I take leave?
In principle this is unlimited but it must always be in consultation with your manager.
Can I also withdraw money as cash?
No, you cannot withdraw cash from your lifespan account. It is only intended to fund free time. If you still have money in your lifespan account when you retire this can be added to your retirement pension.
Can I use the Lifespan Leave-Saving Scheme to retire early?
Yes, this is still possible at the moment. Depending on the balance that you accrue, you can use the Lifespan Leave-Saving Scheme to stop working up to three years early for 70% of your last salary. However, the government is intending to change the rules.
What happens if I fall ill during my lifespan leave?
If you fall ill during your lifespan leave, your leave continues as usual. If you are still ill at the end of your lifespan leave, the first day after your leave counts as your first day of sickness.
What happens in the event of occupational disability during my leave?
You do not pay any employee social security contributions during your leave. If you become ill or are incapable of work, you first receive the agreed payments from the Lifespan Leave-Saving Scheme. You then claim one of the forms of social security, as long as your period of leave does not last longer than 18 months and you return to work before the end of this period.
If an employee is made redundant during lifespan leave can he receive WW (Werkloosheidswet; Unemployment Act) benefits?
Yes, but there are some snakes in the grass. Lifespan leave is unpaid leave. The employee’s income during this leave is not salary but a payment from his own lifespan savings.
The WW stipulates that unpaid leave of less than 78 weeks does not jeopardise benefits. Unpaid leave of longer than 78 weeks means reduced benefits. An employee who takes unpaid leave for his full working hours no longer meets the 26-of-36 weeks requirement for the WW after 88 weeks (78 plus 10) and sometimes even earlier.
He will then receive no benefits at all. A condition of the WW is that the employee is available to work after being made redundant. He therefore does not receive WW benefits for hours for which he continues to enjoy leave.