Law Firm VanEps Kunneman VanDoorne


Employees contribute labor and expertise to your business. Employment refers to the relationship between employees and a company, their employer. This differs from the relationships between clients with their principal and, also, from governmental bodies and their “employees”, i.e. civil servants.

The relationship between a corporation and its employees is usually handled through the human resources department. An employment contract forms the legal basis for most labor relations and is therefore of great societal importance. Employees can organize into trade unions or labor unions, which represent most of the available work force in a single organization. Unions are particular strong in the Dutch Caribbean.

Every entrepreneur or company that has employees will sooner or later be confronted with issues relating to Employment Law.
For years, our lawyers have been widely regarded as the specialists on the subject of Employment Law in the Dutch Caribbean.

We advise our clients in particular on:

  • Negotiations with trade unions;
  • The interpretation of collective labor agreements;
  • Statutory rules on mass redundancy or reorganizations;
  • Redundancy payments;
  • Statutory rules on individual dismissals;
  • The drafting employment contracts.

Dispute resolution in this legal area, including dismissal and dissolution procedures, is of course an essential and integral part of our Employment Practice. We act for island governments and local BES-governments alike in their specific civil servants issues. 

Recently we have assisted:
  • Advice and guidance on immigration laws and residence permits
  • An NYSE listed energy company in proceedings to prevent a claim of payment by an employee of approximately USD 1 mln.
  • Baker Botts LLP as Suriname counsel for their client Halliburton, with regard to the high profile (attempted) acquisitions of oil field services company Baker Hughes, including advise on employment law and the applicability of CARICOM and/or ILO regulations.
  • Fondo de Valores Inmobiliarios as their legal advisor in relatio to corporate issues, real estate and employment regarding the developer of Blue Mall in St. Maarten.
  • Labor union Sindikato General Trahado di Korsow (SGTK) in summary proceedings instituted by nine contracting firms against the labor union as a result of a strike by their employees.
  • Marriott regarding the immediate dismissal of various employees, including litigation, due to breach of policies.
  • RBC Royal Bank in a reorganization across the Dutch Caribbean.
  • Telecommunications company TelEm in St. Maarten with the employment aspects of their complex restructuring in 2013, transferring employees from different entities to the operating company and dismissing employees who were unable to make such transfer.
  • The central Kingdom government in various public service proceedings.
  • Various hotels – such as the Marriott and Hilton hotels in Curacao – in a wide range of employment law matters.
  • Various hotels – such as the Marriott and Hilton hotels in Curacao, Sunscape Curacao Resort, Sorobon Beach Resort in Bonaire and Curacao Holiday Beach Resort – in a wide range of employment law matters including contracting, dismissal, personnel issues in acquisitions and reorganizations, redundancy of employees, negotiations with unions and collective labor agreements.
  • Water- and Electricity Company Bonaire in various employment matters.
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