Update COVID-19 and cross-border employment: agreements with the neighboring countries, a final extension?

In the PwC newsflashes of 10 December 202115 December 2021 and 21 December 2021 we referred to the extension of the mutual agreements between Belgium and the Netherlands / France / Germany / Luxembourg until 31 March 2022.

It was stated that, unless agreed otherwise, the agreements with the Netherlands, France and Luxembourg will in principle be automatically extended until 30 June 2022. Since nothing specific was officially communicated with respect to the termination of these agreements, we can now (start to) assume that the agreements with the Netherlands, France and Luxembourg will be (further) extended until 30 June 2022 (as foreseen).  It is anticipated that this will be the final extension of the agreements, unless the coronavirus brings a new surprise to the table in 2022.  

No such automatic extension was explicitly mentioned regarding the mutual agreement with Germany. The agreement between Belgium and Germany can in principle be terminated when one of the competent authorities gives notice thereof to the other competent authority. However, we (can now start to) assume that, in principle, this agreement will also be extended beyond 31 March 2022, notably until 30 June 2022. 

Note: the COVID-19 mutual agreements allow for a fiction in relation to the employment income linked to the “home working days” solely due to the measures taken by the governments of the respective countries to combat the COVID-19 pandemic. If certain conditions are met, and the employee chooses to apply the fiction, these “forced home working days” are deemed to be spent by the employee in the state where the cross-border worker would have exercised the employment in case no such measures had been taken.

PwC Belgium will keep you updated on any further developments. 

Author: Philip Maertens