Unemployment insurance reform: what will come into force on July 1, 2021


The Council of State has indeed suspended one of the main measures of the unemployment insurance reform, but other flagship measures will apply on July 1.

A reform taking place in an uncertain economic context

The unemployment insurance reform which was about to come into force will see the light of day a little later than expected. The Council of State has revoked the method of calculating the daily reference wage (SJR) supposed to apply on July 1 and on which the amount of unemployment benefits depends.. If the authority considers that the economic context is too uncertain to implement the formula, the government, which wants to move quickly, aims for entry into force no later than October 1.

Other reform measures will begin to apply from July 1, such as the bonus-malus to limit employers’ use of short contracts. It is, for fight against “permittence”, to adjust contributions according to the company’s layoffs, to reward companies that lay off little and penalize others. The amount of these contributions will be calculated from the end of contract dates between July 1, 2021 and July 1, 2022, for payment of unemployment insurance contributions on September 1, 2022.

The degressivity will apply from July 1

For employees who are used to string together short contracts to live off unemployment in the meantime, the conditions for opening up unemployment insurance will tighten: you will have to have worked six months out of the last 24 instead of the current four in order to be able to receive unemployment insurance. For this measure, no application date has been set. It will come into force when the economic situation has stabilized.

On the other hand, the degression of unemployment benefits for the highest incomes will indeed come into force on July 1. This measure will concern job seekers under the age of 57 who received a salary exceeding 4,500 euros gross per month as part of their former activity and registered as unemployed from July 1. But its conditions of application will depend on the economic context.

The rest of the unemployment insurance reform will effectively apply from July 1, 2021.