The Legal 500

Twitter Logo Youtube Circle Icon LinkedIn Icon
Work 0031 20 240 27 60
Fax +31 20 240 2769
Shearwaters, Martijn van Broeckhuijsen, Amsterdam, NETHERLANDS

Lawyer rankings

Martijn van Broeckhuijsen

Work +31202402760

Work Department

Corporate Employment Law


Founding partner and co-head


Linklaters’ former Dutch employment and pensions head resigned at the end of 2014 to found corporate employment boutique Shearwaters on 1 January 2015. He continued working closely with former Linklaters clients such as Novartis prior to the arrival of Maarten Vestering in September 2015.

Martijn has been practising employment law and related litigation since 1996 (20+ years). He has an international background, having lived in Singapore, Brazil, El Salvador and on St. Maarten. He is a senior lawyer specialising in all employment law aspects of M&A, employment litigation, contract drafting, board room dismissals, mass dismissals, corporate restructurings, executive remuneration, and trade union/works council negotiations.

Martijn started his career at Dutch domestic firm Houthoff Buruma, advising (i.a.) on the formation of a global technology leader. He continued building his strong track record in standalone as well as in M&A related individual and collective employment law at global law firm Baker McKenzie.

Martijn has extensive experience in solving employment issues in international transactions and in standalone employment matters for corporates, financial institutions and executives operating internationally.

He is recognized as one of Europe's leading lawyers for business. Sources quoted say:

"Business oriented, pleasant and factual".

"He really wants to represent you and to help you. He has that drive."

"Creative in finding solutions".

"An excellent team with a business-oriented rather than a minimalistic legal view, which helps the transaction."

"The lawyers have a good understanding of M&A and how that translates to the Dutch employment situation.”

“Quick turnaround, clear communications and guidance."

"The team was able to package the advice in such a way that we could easily forward it to other departments in our company. There was no legalese and it was very clear. It really understands us and our commercial drivers."



Dutch, English


National Association of Employment Lawyers("VAAN")
Regional Association of Employment Lawyers ("VvAA e.o.")
National Association for Employment Law ("VVA")


Erasmus University Rotterdam (Master's degree in Law; 1991-1996)
Radboud University Nijmegen (Grotius Academy - Post University Specialist Diploma; 2001-2002)
United World College of South-East Asia (College/University Preparatory and Advanced High School/Secondary Diploma Program; International Baccalaureate)



Within: Employment

Shearwaters is 'a small firm with very personalised and attentive service which is highly specialised in employment law and the nuances between local and international implications'. The team's commercial employment focus covers executive dismissals, works council consultations, collective redundancies and reorganisations. Martijn van Broeckhuijsen and Maarten Vestering co-head the group; 'both provide advice without allowing the heat of the situation to interfere with timing and decisions'. The group's clients include international law firms as well as corporates. In recent work, the practice is advising on a number of high-level dismissals including those at Grupo Netco (Netsa Investments) following the closure of the company's Amsterdam office.

[back to top]

Back to index

Legal Developments in Netherlands

Legal Developments and updates from the leading lawyers in each jurisdiction. To contribute, send an email request to
  • Dynamic Contracts: Changing employment practices in the digital era

    Digital platforms designed to deliver professional services are changing the European employment landscape as both employers  and workers look for more flexible ways to work.
  • New Late Payments Directive

    Despite the implementation of Directive 2000/35/EC on combating late payment in commercial transactions in 2002, the European Commission (the “Commission”) concluded in 2008 that late payments were still widespread in the EU. It also turned out that public authorities in certain Member States were stipulating unjustifiably long contractual payment periods for transactions.
  • Amendment of the Collective Redundancy Notification Act

    On 1 March 2012 the Collective Redundancy Notification Act (Wet Melding Collective Outslug, "WACO") will be amended. What changes does this involve?
  • New Corporate Law Legislation

    In the field of corporate law, there are four (coming) Acts that attract attention, namely the introduction of the tenth book of the Dutch Civil Code, the amendment of the Marital Property Act and, to conclude, the coming entry into effect of the Management and Supervision Act and the Flexibilization of BV Act. Please find below a short explanation of each Act.
  • Shipping & Transport - Netherlands

    Attaching maritime assets in insolvency
    - AKD
  • The employment of foreign workers. What issues do you need to be aware of as an employer?

    The employment of foreign workers regularly raises questions. A brief summary of the most important areas of attention will be dealt with in this article.
    - AKD
  • Non-solicitation agreement violated via LinkedIn

    A non-solicitation agreement usually restricts the ability of an employee - after an employment contract has ended - to approach the clients of the former employer. The former employee of a software company recently discovered that the scope of such an agreement can also include contacts made via LinkedIn.
    - AKD

    Few jurisdictions can boast a foreign direct investment record like the Netherlands. As the world's seventh largest inward receiver of investments, housing approximately 9000 foreign-owned companies, the country's dynamic business environment provides an invaluable insight into macro investment trends.
    - AKD
  • Forming a company in the Netherlands

    The Netherlands and Dutch law The Netherlands is a perfect business location for foreign entrepreneurs (2,000 subsidiaries in Amsterdam, 140,000 jobs). It is the gateway to densely populated Western Europe and has a well-developed logistic and technical infrastructure.
  • Leasing of commercial premises in the Netherlands

    Normal 0 false false false EN-GB X-NONE X-NONE MicrosoftInternetExplorer4 /* Style Definitions */ table.MsoNormalTable {mso-style-name:"Table Normal"; mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0; mso-tstyle-colband-size:0; mso-style-noshow:yes; mso-style-priority:99; mso-style-qformat:yes; mso-style-parent:""; mso-padding-alt:0cm 5.4pt 0cm 5.4pt; mso-para-margin:0cm; mso-para-margin-bottom:.0001pt; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:10.0pt; font-family:"Times New Roman","serif";} Dutch Law distinguishes two categories of commercial premises. Depending on the type of premises or the purpose for which it is used, they are referred to as: