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Employee Benefits : Blue-collar vs white-collar

08 November 2016


Blue-collar vs white-collar employees: what’s it about?

Actual situation:

  • Different treatment of blue-collar and white-collar employees in the field of occupational pensions

The goal:

  • Gradual abolition of the different treatment in order to get harmonization of both

Who is concerned?

  • Both industry-wide and company-level pension schemes

What is the “cut-off date”?

  • By 1 January 2025 : elimination of any discrimination between blue-collar and white-collar employees in existing occupational pension schemes

Blue-collar vs white-collar employees: timetable

< 1 jan 2015:

  • Different pension schemes are not considered as being discriminatory

1 Jan 2015 – 01 Jan 2023 (industry-wide) / 01 Jan 2025 (company-level):
=Stand still period.

  • New pension schemes: no more distinction possible
  • Existing pension schemes: existing differences may not increase

≥ 1 Jan 2023 (industry-wide) / 01 Jan 2025 (company-level):

  • No more distinction possible between blue-collar and white-collar employee pension schemes
  • One new occupational pension scheme for all employees might be necessary

Blue-collar vs white-collar employees: processes

  • It’s up to the industries to start the harmonization process.
  • Companies can await the outcome of these negociations.
  • Cut-off date is 01 Jan 2025 for both industries and companies
  • The progress of harmonization process will be evaluated every 2 years

Action points:

  • Overview of existing occupational pension schemes
  • Monitoring developments in the sectors of industry
  • Modifying (carefuly) existing pension schemes


Do you want to know more about this topic ? Please contact matthew.serck@add.be

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