updated: 26th of May 2020
When can we go back to work?
The first steps have been taken towards a phased start as of 4 May. Provided that the safety regulations are strictly adhered to, it is possible to get back to work for your customers. The office will contact you to discuss everything. Only then can you get back to work. You are not allowed to go back to your clients on your own without the prior consent of your office.
I am scared of getting the coronavirus or of infecting my (older) clients. Do I have to go back to work?
You can choose whether or not to go back to work for the time being.
We nonetheless insist that you can work safely and in a safe working environment. The restart can only take place if you and your clients agree to our prevention and safety policy.
If you and your client comply with all safety regulations correctly, the risk of contamination is very small.
I have no childcare for my children, do I have to go back to work?
You can decide for yourself whether you want to go back to work for the time being.
Tip: As of 4 May, all schools are required to organize childcare for children of parents of whom at least one works outside the home.
If you go back to work, you can take your children to the emergency childcare. Crèches must also provide childcare.
Ask your office for a certificate by way of proof.
I (or someone in my family) have (has) symptoms of – or have (had) — COVID-19 in the last 14 days. Can I still go back to work?
No, you cannot go back to work in such a case.
In order to be able to start work again, there may have been no case of infection – or symptoms of possible infection — in your family in the last 14 days.
Do I have to take extra measures to go back to work?
We find it important that you can work safely and in a safe working environment.
Before you can start, you will be contacted by one of our staff. They will inform you about our safety regulations. Your customers will also be informed about the extra measures they need to take to guarantee safety.
Will I receive protective equipment from Plus Home Services?
If you and your client comply strictly with our safety regulations, you do not need any extra protective equipment. We will make such equipment available to those who want it.
Collecting and using protective equipment is optional, certainly not mandatory, at the office. Please make an appointment with one of our staff.
• The gloves are reusable and should be maintained as you would wash your hands correctly: wash thoroughly with soap and water and then dry with paper or a clean towel.
• In a first phase, we will provide one pair of reusable gloves for each home carer, which you must keep with you at all times (do not leave them with the client).
• The mouth masks are reusable and should be washed daily at 60°. It is recommended keep them in a clean way during the day. We advise using paper: an envelope, wrapped in paper, etc. Mouth masks are not intended to be worn during cleaning when the rules of conduct apply, but they are to be used when going to and from the customer. The same mask can therefore be used for a full day.
• The mouth mask is made of 65% polyester and 35% cotton. It is a three-layer mask, washable up to 90° (minimum 60°). A mouth mask without a replaceable filter has been chosen because we care for the environment and work in a sustainable way.
• Every home carer with a contract of less than 32 hours will be issued 2 mouth masks.
Every home carer with a contract of more than 32 hours will get 3 mouth masks.
Can the client require me to wear a mouth mask and gloves?
No, the customer is not allowed to require this. Please refer them to the office on this matter.
I am at work and fall ill. What happens now?
For the days on which a client has been booked, you will receive your guaranteed wages. For the days covered by force majeure, you will be entitled to a sickness benefit through the mutual health insurance company.
You must bring the sickness certificate in on time in accordance with the existing illness procedure. Please note that you can also send the illness certificate to your office electronically.
I am at work, but have to go into ‘quarantine’ preventively because I have come into contact with an ill/infected person. What do I have to do?
You must bring the ‘quarantine certificate’ in on time in accordance with the existing sickness procedure. Please note that you can also send this certificate to your office electronically.
For these days of absence, you will be entitled to unemployment benefit due to force majeure.
Consult our instruction card also on this matter (available here).
I have doubts about some situations with clients. Whom can I contact?
If there are problems with a client (e.g. a high-risk patient, a client who is demented, a client who does not comply with the safety rules…), please contact the office immediately, so we can assess the situation in a customized way and with respect for everyone’s privacy.
If no one answers immediately, call us at the toll-free number 0800 20 500. You can reach us also via chat as of Tuesday, 26 May. Our experts will be on hand to answer all your questions every working day from 7:00 am to 7:00 pm. Go to www.phservices.be and ask your question.
I am pregnant. Can I go to work during the coronavirus crisis?
Yes, of course, but you have to abide strictly by the safety rules.
Can I carry out all tasks at the client as before?
Yes, of course, on condition that you comply strictly with the safety rules.
I have a bus pass, but I have to cycle to work due to the current circumstances. Do I get a reimbursement for this?
No, the existing regulations concerning your transport expenses remain in force.
Can I do a replacement if some of my current clients do not want any service yet?
Yes, but only on condition that you can go and work at these customers for several consecutive weeks and only if these customers have also agreed to our safety regulations.
Can I reach my office during this period?
We will remain available during office hours by phone and (preferably) by e-mail for any questions or problems. Our employees work behind closed doors and only by appointment because of the strict safety regulations.
Can I bring my vouchers to the office?
You are requested to deposit your service vouchers and all other documents in the letterbox of your office.
In urgent cases, you can make an appointment with an office staff member. Make sure that you comply with the safety regulations concerning social distancing, hand hygiene and the rules concerning sneezing and coughing.
I have resumed work partially. Do I have to apply for temporary unemployment again?
If you had already submitted the C3.2 employee-coronavirus form to your payment institution (trade union or welfare fund), it will remain valid until the end of your temporary unemployment or when you resume work partially. If you still have questions on this matter, please contact your trade union or welfare fund.
When or how will the unemployment benefit be paid?
The payroll office of Plus Home Services will send the necessary documents to the payment institutions (trade union and welfare fund) at the end of the month. The institutions will pay the temporary unemployment benefits as promptly as possible on the basis of those documents.
Will I receive an advance payment?
You do not receive an advance for temporary unemployment as you have not worked.
If you have resumed work as of the beginning of May, you will receive an advance payment in May.
Who pays for the public holidays during the period of temporary unemployment?
The public holidays that fall after a consecutive period of 14 days of temporary unemployment due to force majeure are paid by the payment institution.
What about my pension rights, holiday allowance and year-end bonus?
Periods of temporary unemployment are assimilated for your pension calculation. In other words, you accrue pension rights also during a period of temporary unemployment. The same applies to your holiday entitlement and holiday pay for the subsequent year: temporary unemployment has no effect on this.
The rules are different for calculating the end-of-year bonus: force majeure unemployment is not included in the calculation.
When will I receive my holiday allowance for 2020?
Due to the health crisis, it has been decided that the holiday allowance 2020 will be paid exceptionally in May. For the correct payment date, you can log on to myholidayallowance.be.
I am a frontier worker. Can I be placed on temporary unemployment?
This concerns frontier workers who live in another country (e.g. France, Germany, the Netherlands or the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg) and who come to work in Belgium. In the event of temporary unemployment, these workers may receive benefits from Belgium. However, we advise you to keep well informed by contacting your payment institution (ABVV, ACV, ACLVB or the unemployment benefit fund). They can inform you perfectly about your specific situation.
I receive a pension. Can I receive benefits as a temporary unemployed person?
Yes. You can combine your pension with temporary unemployment benefits. We advise you to keep well informed by contacting your payment institution (ABVV, ACV, ACLVB or the unemployment benefit fund). They can inform you perfectly about your specific situation.
Do I have to have worked a number of days before I can be placed on temporary unemployment?
In order to get benefits, you first have to prove a number of working and equivalent days, i.e. provide “proof of eligibility.”
If you are temporarily unemployed due to force majeure, you will be entitled to unemployment benefits without meeting the eligibility conditions.
If you become temporarily unemployed for economic reasons during the period from 1 February 2020 to 30 June 2020, you will be entitled to unemployment benefits without meeting the eligibility conditions.
However, we advise you to keep well informed by contacting your payment institution (ABVV, ACV, ACLVB or the unemployment benefit fund). They can inform you perfectly about your specific situation.
!Please note: temporary unemployment benefits cannot be paid for economic reasons before 1 February 2020 or after 30 June 2020 if you cannot prove your eligibility.
I have reduced my work schedule under credit or career interruption. Can I combine this benefit with benefits for temporary unemployment?
Yes, cumulation is allowed. You can be placed on temporary unemployment in your adjusted work schedule. The normal rules will apply. You are regarded as a voluntary part-time employee and are therefore entitled to half-time unemployment benefits. However, we advise you to keep well informed by contacting your payment institution (ABVV, ACV, ACLVB or the unemployment benefit fund). They can inform you perfectly about your specific situation.
Can I stop my career interruption / time credit period early?
You are not entitled to terminate your career interruption or time credit early. This is only possible by mutual agreement with the employer and under certain conditions. The career interruption/time credit may not be terminated early for the sole purpose of being placed on temporary unemployment.
Can I take coronavirus parental leave?
• You must be employed for at least 1 month
• Work at least 28.5 hours per week in order to reduce your work time by ½.
• Work at least 38 hours per week in order to reduce your work time by ½ or 1/5.
• You must apply at least 3 days in advance.
• You need your employer’s permission.
Discuss this matter with an office staff member first so that we can draw up a new personalized schedule.
For more information, please go to the website of the National Employment Office: https://www.rva.be/sites/default/files/coronavirus/FAQ_CPC_NL_20200514.pdf
What happens to my holiday which had been planned during the period of temporary unemployment due to force majeure?
Given the many requests we received to cancel holidays during the period of temporary unemployment, all holidays during this period will be converted to Temporary Unemployment due to Force Majeure.
During this period of temporary unemployment, you will receive an unemployment benefit of 70% of your gross salary. You will receive an additional allowance of €5.63/day.
We advise you to plan your leave in good time and to apply for it for the rest of the year. You can carry 5 days of leave forward to next year if necessary.
What about my holidays scheduled from May onwards?
These holidays simply remain as planned. If you want to make changes, please always do so in consultation with the office.
What does Plus Home Services do for me now?
As an employer, we work very hard every day to keep the company on the right track.
• We have written several open letters to the government asking them to support our sector as much as possible in these times. You can read them on www.cvd19.be. We will continue to work hard to that end.
• We are working on a safe restart for everyone.
• We are working on clear guidelines on safety and prevention and are informing everyone, employees and customers.
• We remain available to answer your questions by phone or e-mail.
I am struggling financially. What can I do?
The government has taken a number of measures to limit your personal expenses in the times of the coronavirus. You can consult an overview of these measures that may also apply to you here.
You can also contact one of our staff on 03/210.17.76. They will look for a solution together with you.
I am having a hard time psychologically. Where can I turn to?
The following hotlines are always available for counselling
• 1712: Violence hotline
• 1813: Suicide hotline
• 106: tele-counselling
Didn’t find an answer to your question? No problem. You can always visit our offices between 8:30 am and 1:00 pm and 3:30 and 5:00 pm. You can also reach our live chat as of 26 May every work day, from 7:00 am to 7:00 pm via www.phservices.be