Category Archive: Government/Politics

New legislation on Act on Part-Time Work and Fixed-Term Employment postponed

In the course of assembling a parliamentary majority after the 2013 federal elections in Germany, the CDU and SPD parties agreed in their coalition agreement on adopting legislation on increasing flexibility for employees. One of the proposals provides for the employee’s right to return to full-time work after a fixed period of part-time work. As …

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Equal Pay Act – A prospect

The coalition committee set the outline for an Equal Pay Act on 6 October 2016, thereby affirming that the current gender pay gap between men and women is no longer acceptable. Moreover, the Equal Pay Act should support families with a low income. According to official statistics the wages of female employees are currently about …

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EU Council adopted Trade-Secret-Directive

The Trade-Secret-Directive was a long time in the making. On 27 May 2016 the EU Council unanimously adopted the Directive on “Trade Secrets”. The Directive’s aim is to protect organisations within EU member states from misappropriation of “trade secrets” and also seeks to harmonize the diverging national laws of the Member States. What is a …

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Good news for company lawyers

On 1 January 2016, the law on reforming the rights of company lawyers (Syndikusrechtsanwälte) came into force. The reform will enable company lawyers to remain in the lawyer’s occupational pension insurance (Versorgungswerk), ie entitle them to be exempted from the statutory pension scheme. By this law, the legislator has corrected the decision of the Federal …

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Gender quota in boardrooms from 2016

At the beginning of this month, German lawmakers passed a law requiring companies to give 30 per cent of seats on a supervisory board to women as of next year. It is intended to increase this quota to 50% from 2018 onwards. The new rules apply to listed companies with a co-determined supervisory board, ie …

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The person you have called is not available…

According to Sec. 9 para 1 of the Working Time Act, employees are not allowed to work on Sundays and public holidays. However, the law provides for a number of exceptions, for example for employees in emergency and rescue services and hospitals or the public transport sector but also in restaurants, theatres or other leisure …

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Minimum wage from 2015

The lower house of the German Parliament (Bundestag) has approved the nationwide minimum hourly wage of EUR 8.50 (GBP 7.11, USD 11,55) to start on 01 January 2015. The consent of the upper house (Bundesrat) for the bill to become law is still required but it is to be expected that the Bundesrat will approve …

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Update on women’s quota on supervisory boards

The ministries of justice and family have now submitted a draft bill regarding a gender quota on supervisory boards to the other ministries for internal consultation. The ministries assume that approximately 3,500 companies will be affected by this law. The draft provides that, starting with the elections in 2016, at least 30% of the board …

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New Directive on Supplementary Pension Rights in Force 20 May 2014: Do German Employers Need to Take Action?

On 15 April 2014, the European Parliament issued a Directive improving the protection of supplementary pension rights (i.e. rights under occupational pension schemes – so-called ‘second-pillar’ pension schemes linked to an employment relationship) for mobile workers. The new rules help to remove current obstacles to free movement, such as the requirement for very long periods …

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Greater enforcement of posted workers’ rights

The European Parliament intends to strengthen the rights of workers posted temporarily to provide services abroad.  On April 16th 2014 the EU Parliament voted for draft legislation aimed at improving the rules of the 1996 directive on the working conditions of posted workers. In particular, the new law shall avoid the circumvention of employee protection …

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