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Netherlands – Fake accreditation certificates discovered in recruitment sector

06 September 2013

Some unscrupulous agencies are using fake certificates claiming accreditation with the Labour Standard Foundation (SNA). The Social Affairs Inspectorate has advised companies to verify that their agency they are using is actually certified by SNA. Otherwise, it could end up costing them a lot of money. 

The Social Affairs Inspectorate discovered the fake certificate scam while investigating rogue agencies across the Netherlands. The certificates were reportedly made ​​using creative digital cut and paste technology. The Social Affairs Inspectorate is working in conjunction with Dutch Revenue and Customers and the unemployment benefit office to combat labour exploitation. Collectively these organisations form the AMU – Approach Maleficent Agencies.  

Fake certificates should be reported to the SNA. Their intervention team will then compile a report of the agencies involved. These records are then handed over to the public prosecutor. The advantages of using certified agencies is that the client company is not held liable if the agency pays too little tax. It the certificate, however, proves to be false the client company then becomes liable.

Ensuring that a company is certified is simple and can be done by visiting the SNA website, which has a complete list of certified agencies. If a company were to discover an agency that is unlisted, yet claims to be certified, the company should report it to the SNA. The SNA will then inform the AMU of a potential breach.

The client company is also required to ensure that the agency has been registered with the Chamber of Commerce. Failure to meet these requirements can result in the client company being fined EUR 12,000 per worker recruited through an uncertified and unregistered recruitment agency.  


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