Month: July 2017

New to age limits: What is allowed, what is not allowed?

Age limits remain a permanent issue in employment law in Europe. They come into play in different ways: On the one hand, as a maximum age limit for the commencement of a particular career;  on the other hand – even more relevant – as an age limit at which the employment relationship automatically terminates. A third similar case  is the provision of benefits (for example additional leave days) from or to a certain age. All …

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German Employee Boardroom Participation under European Scrutiny

On 4 May 2017, the Advocate General delivered his Opinion in the case of TUI/Erzberger (docket number: C-566/15) in front of the ECJ and found that the German provisions on employee participation do not violate European law. He has now been confirmed by the ECJ on 18 July 2017. The Higher Regional Court Berlin (Kammergericht Berlin) referred the following question to the ECJ: Do, the German provisions on employee participation conform with European Law? In …

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Beware of invalid temporal limits of work contracts

The agreement on a time limit for the employment contract is a practice frequently used in Germany, in order to escape the restrictions on the right to protection. Caution is, however, required, since a fixed term is only permitted under special statutory conditions. On the one hand, it is necessary to examine whether there is a material reason for the limitation or if the special conditions for an unconditional limitation, which are strictly limited, are …

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Occupational Pensions: Deteriorating replacement of a works agreement in the course of a transfer of business

By judgment of 08.02.2017 (4 Sa 34/16) the Regional Labour Court Baden-Württemberg has ruled that an occupational pension scheme can be worsened by a transfer of business in accordance with § 613a of the German Civil Code (BGB) if a works agreement existing at the seller is replaced by a less favorable works agreement existing at the acquirer. The parties were in dispute about the legal basis for the plaintiff’s occupational pension payments. The plaintiff’s …

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Act on Uniformity of Collective Agreements (Tarifeinheitsgesetz) in most parts compatible with the German Constitution (Grundgesetz, GG)

The constitutionality of the Act on Uniformity of Collective Agreements has been a widely debated issue since it came into force in July 2015. Just recently – on 11 July 2017 – the German Federal Constitutional Court (Bundesverfassungsgericht, BVerfG) confirmed that the provisions of this Act are compatible with the German Constitution for the most part (docket-numbers: 1 BvR 1571/15, 1 BvR 1477/16, 1 BvR 1043/16, 1 BvR 2883/15, 1 BvR 1588/15). The Act prescribes …

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Occupational Pensions: Clause of general terms and conditions according to which only a “present” wife of an employee is entitled to survivors’ benefits can constitute inadmissible disadvantage

By judgment of 21.02.2017 (3 AZR 297/15) the Federal Labor Court has ruled that a clause in general terms and conditions according to which only a “present” wife of an employee is entitled to a survivor’s pension constitutes an unreasonable disadvantage for the employee and therefore is invalid according to § 307 para (1) sentence 1 of German Civil Code (BGB). However, if the pension promise had been granted before 1 January 2002, this would …

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Rail Cartel: Which court is competent for recovery claims against a former manager?

This is the first case in Germany in which a company has claimed for recovery from a former manager because he (allegedly) was responsible for the company infringing competion law. The decision of the Federal Labour Court (Bundesarbeitsgericht) was thus eagerly awaited. By judgment of 29 June 2017 (docket number 8 AZR 189/15), the Federal Labour Court annulled the former judgment and referred it back to the court of appeal in order to make further determinations. According to the published press release it could not …

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