Expertise | Bellaw

Labour Law

Labour law is primarily concerned with employment relationships. It has numerous areas, each regulating the individual and collective relations between employer and employee.

We are familiar with all aspects of labour law: individual and collective labour agreements, pay and fringe benefits, working time arrangements, public holidays, annual leave, welfare at work, consultative bodies, restructuring, discrimination, use of language, etc. We can provide information, advice, assistance and representation in relation to each of these.

Social security law

Everything relating to the applicability of the social security schemes for employees, self-employed persons and civil servants is part of our core business. Of course, this also applies to social security contributions including those for self-employed persons, as well as to all possible special contributions, sometimes also called solidarity contributions. We offer advice, negotiate on your behalf, submit requests for reduction of contribution surcharges and interest and represent you in disputes.

But unlike many other firms specialising in social law, we can also assist you with problems or disputes concerning health care benefits, family allowances, disability and unemployment benefits and pensions.


Judgments and decisions rendered in the last instance, i.e. usually on appeal, can in most cases still be appealed in cassation. An appeal in cassation does not lead to a complete reopening of the case, but only to the Court of Cassation examining whether the judge applied the law correctly. Contrary to what is often claimed, this cassation review does not only concern procedural aspects, but also the correct interpretation and application of the law. Only the facts are not re-examined.

A cassation appeal is an exceptional remedy and a very technical matter. Therefore, in matters other than criminal law and tax law, it can only be instituted by a specialised lawyer who is a member of the Bar Association of the Court of Cassation. The latter will initially give an opinion on the possibility of an appeal in cassation and on its chances of success. As a rule, a decision to appeal in cassation is taken only on the basis of a positive opinion.

If the appeal in cassation succeeds, the Court of Cassation overturns the contested judgment or ruling and, as a rule, sends the case to another court of law of the same level as the one whose decision was overturned.

One of the twenty lawyers at the Court of Cassation is attached to our firm: Willy van Eeckhoutte, who, with a team of lawyers specialised in cassation cases, can advise and assist you in the matters indicated above. They do so both in social law and civil or commercial law cases.

Civil servants law

Whether staff members are appointed under the articles of association or recruited under contract, we are ready to advise and assist management boards or civil servants in matters such as legal status, financial status, career, wellbeing at work, dismissal, and pension.

One of our lawyers, Inge Derde, has particular expertise in all matters of discipline, especially in local government.

Social criminal law

More often than in the past, repressive action is taken in labour or social security law matters. This ranges from occasional or targeted checks by inspection services, to issuing warnings or out of court settlement, to imposing an administrative fine or instituting prosecution before the criminal court.

We can help you at all these stages: assistance during interrogation, contacts with the social inspection services or the labour prosecutor’s office, defence before the Federal Public Service Employment, Labour and Social Dialogue if it intends to impose a fine and, of course, also everything that comes with criminal proceedings.

Sports law

Some of our lawyers have chosen to specialise in both the labour law and social security law aspects of sports and related fields. They scrutinise the contracts and clauses of sportsmen and women, or draft them informing and advising on the rights and obligations and the social security position of trainers, sportsmen and women and club employees.

They offer support in the event of disputes and represent you in any proceedings.

Advice in complex social law matters

Willy van Eeckhoutte, emeritus associate professor at Ghent University and lawyer at the Court of Cassation, enjoys nothing more than investigating complex social law problems, advising on them and working out answers and solutions.

His experience of 45 years of academic and bar activities ensures a thorough investigation and clear and practical results. A team of young top lawyers assists him and provides the added value of an unbiased and fresh perspective.

Legislative interpretation and evolution

In our office, the Belgian Official Journal and the social law journals are read daily by the specialised team of Ann Taghon and Ester Van Oostveldt. New publications are added constantly to our extensive library. With the help of our digital tools, we can check and control all this information and documentation.

This know-how, experience and infrastructure allow us to respond quickly to new legislation and evolutions in the legal system. We can therefore inform you perfectly and supplement this information with our own views.