‘Springboard to self-employment’

The ‘Springboard to self-employment’ (‘Springplank naar zelfstandige’) benefit is a measure that allows for a person to perform a sideline activity as a self-employed person while still being entitled to unemployment benefits for a period of twelve months. 

1. What are the conditions? 

To take advantage of this measure, the following conditions must be fulfilled: 

  • When you start your sideline profession you inform the benefits agency thereof at the time you apply for benefits. If you are already receiving unemployment benefits, then inform the agency before starting the activity.
  • Please note: if you do not inform them in good time, then there is a risk you will be required to repay the unemployment benefits and you will not be entitled to those benefits for a number of weeks. You could also be subject to criminal prosecution.
  • You may not quit your job as a salaried employee just so you can take advantage of this measure. Your unemployment cannot be caused by quitting or cutting back on salaried employment for the purpose of obtaining the ‘Springboard to self-employment’ benefit.
  • You cannot have performed your future sideline activity as a principal activity in the previous six years, with that time calculated from the date of the end of the professional activity to the date of the start of the sideline activity.
  • You cannot have third parties perform your activity, such as by contracting or subcontracting somebody. 

The following activities cannot be performed within the scope of the ‘Springboard to self-employment’ benefit:

  • the profession practiced as a salaried employee;
  • an artistic activity. 

Moreover, you must fulfil the following additional obligations in order to make use of the measure:

  • you must be registered as a jobseeker;
  • you must be available to join the labour market. This means that you must accept every suitable position and accept requests from the regional job placement service;
  • you must be fit for work;
  • you must be resident in Belgium. 

2. How long can this measure be used? 

The ‘Springboard to self-employment’ benefit is awarded for 12 months, starting from the date upon which the activity is started or when the benefit is first applied for. The period cannot be extended.  

3. Accumulated income as a self-employed person and from unemployment benefits 


You may accumulate the income from the activity you perform together with your unemployment benefits under the ‘Springboard to self-employment’, but only to a limited degree. The daily sum you receive in unemployment benefits will be reduced by that part of the sum you earn daily from your sideline activity that exceeds €13.70. Bear in mind that the income will only be known two years later, and if it is determined at that stage that the daily sum was exceeded by a considerable margin, you may be required to repay your unemployment benefits in full. It is not inconceivable that, in that event, you will be penalised. For example: if the net daily income from your sideline activity amounts to €20, then the daily sum you receive in unemployment benefits will be cut by the difference between €20 and €13.70. Your daily income is calculated by dividing by 312 the net taxable annual income (= gross – expenses).  

4. When does this status end? 

As soon as you are effectively practicing a principal activity as a self-employed person, you are no longer entitled to unemployment benefits. If you cease your sideline activity you will still receive unemployment benefits. We recommend that you inform your benefits agency as quickly as possible if you quit. If you continue your activity after 12 months, you will no longer receive benefits. However, deviations from that rule are possible if, before taking advantage of this benefit, you already performed your sideline activity while unemployed with the permission of the National Employment Office (Rijksdienst voor Arbeidsvoorziening – RVA). In that event, please contact your benefits agency.  

5. If you do not meet the conditions 

If you submit an application to take advantage of this benefit and it emerges that you do not meet the conditions, you will receive a decision declining the application. You can lodge an appeal within three months against this decision with the labour court.  

6. You can take advantage of this status more than once 

You can take advantage of the benefit again after a period of six years, starting from the date it last ended, and if all conditions are once again met.  If you have any further questions or seek assistance in taking advantage of this measure, then please get in touch with the team of our Legal Department.

Valuation of usufruct
Now also a witch hunt when usufruct is sold?
In previous editions, we have already written about the valuation of usufruct when purchasing property, but recently there have also been regular reports of checks on the valuation of usufruct when reselling. However, up until now, the case law has followed the viewpoint of the taxpayer. Brief description For several years, there has been a lot of controversy regarding the valuation of usufruc
Vlabel is using conciliatory language
Has the decrease in Flemish sales duty led to an increase in the costs for purchases of usufruct?
The decrease in sales duty: also for split purchase usufruct-bare ownership The recent drop in the rate (to 7.00%) for purchases of family homes comes with a number of conditions. For example, the purchaser must be a natural person. Following some uncertainty, it was subsequently confirmed that, in the event of a split purchase of such a property by a company for the usufruct and the bare owner f
The labour market of the future
Earn (on the side) flexibly and untaxed
There are three legal social statuses in Belgium, (i) employee, (ii) self-employed and (iii) civil servant. However, the question is often asked whether these classifications are still relevant to the rapidly evolving labour market in which flexibility is key and many people opt for a 'freelance status' or wish to combine several statuses. Voka has already called for a debate on the labour mark
Is there a notification requirement for your organisation?
Well begun is half done: Prepare your organisation for the go-live of the UBO register.
The register of ultimate beneficiaries (the "UBO register") will go live on 31 October 2018. In one of our previous newsletters we presented an overview of the general framework of the UBO register. The Royal Decree of 30 July 2018, published in the Belgian Official Journal of 14 September 2018, explains this register in detail. We’ve reviewed what your organisation needs to take into account.&n
One of the action points of the ATAD Directive
Impact of the implementation of the Belgian CFC legislation: the de facto tightening of transfer pricing rules?
From 1 January 2019 (fiscal year 2020), the newly introduced CFC rule will come into effect in Belgium, due to the implementation of the ATAD directive1. This new legislation must be interpreted within the broader framework of the Summer Agreement and the reforms within Belgian corporate taxation, which, like the CFC legislation, have resulted in part from the heavily discussed implementation of t
Brexit, e-commerce & VAT action plan are discussed
Pending changes in the area of international VAT
In the previous edition we discussed the expected changes in terms of VAT at a national level. In this article we will briefly consider the VAT changes that are expected internationally.                Brexit  In principle, on 30 March 2019, the ‘Brexit’ will finally be a reality. The United Kingdom will no lon
Limited number of legal entity types
Help, soon my legal entity type will no longer exist!
The WVV ("CAC") is on its way On 4 June 2018, the "draft legislation introducing the Companies and Associations Code" was filed in the Chamber, marking one of the most far-reaching corporate law reforms since the introduction of the coordinated laws on commercial companies on 30 November 1935. This extensive reform of corporate law corresponds with the introduction of the “Companies and Asso
A brief summary
What should be expected in relation to (national) VAT?
Despite the fact that many of us are still in summer (holiday) mode, this article is going to focus on the VAT changes that we could expect in the not-too-distant future. It will provide a brief summary. For a more in-depth examination, you can always contact our VAT team.  Vouchers (1 January 2019)  In June 2016, Europe set out the VAT process for vouchers (Directive (EU)2016/1065 o
The FAQ contains no fewer than thirty-one questions
FAQ published regarding the Innovation Income Deduction (IID)
On 26 July 2018, the FPS Finance used Fisconet - you can registrate for free to consult the list of FAQ - to publish the long-awaited list of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) regarding the Innovation Income Deduction. Since the law of 9 February 2017, introducing the Innovation Income Deduction, there now follows the first additional comments concerning the legal provisions of Art. 20
Depends on the nature and frequency of the violation
Fine levels set for non-compliance with transfer pricing documentation obligation
From tax year 2017 and, more specifically, the implementation of the mandatory transfer pricing documentation obligation, there was an immediate indication that, from a second violation of non-compliance with the transfer pricing obligations, a fine of between 1,250 EUR and 25,000 EUR (Article 445, §3 Income Tax Code 1992) could be imposed. The scales of the administrative fines and their appl

Subscribe to our newsletter