In order to ease the burden on companies in the current situation, the German Federal Association of Health Insurance Funds (GKV-Spitzenverband) announced in its circular letter of March 25, 2020 that it will temporarily facilitate the possibility of deferring social security contributions. This measure will initially be limited to April 30, 2020. After that, the facilitation will initially only cover social security contributions for the months of March and April 2020.
On March 25, 2020, the German Parliament (“Bundestag”) passed the “Act on the Protection of the Population in the Event of an Epidemic Situation of National Importance” and, after the approval of the German Federal Council (“Bundesrat”) on March 27, 2020, it entered into force on March 30, 2020.
As a consequence of the impact of the coronavirus crisis Germany’s government has decided on March 10, 2020 to facilitate access to the Short-Time Work Allowance by government decree. The government decree has not yet been issued, but it shall become effective as of the beginning of April 2020 until the end of 2021.
In a coalition decision of March 8, 2020, the German government decided to promote support for short-time work (temporarily shortened working hours for employees in existing employment relationships) and liquidity support to limit the economic consequences of the widespread outbreak of COVID-19.
Back when the GDPR was introduced, one of the central topics in the media was the possibility of imposing fines for data protection violations, which was greatly expanded by the regulation. Art. 83 GDPR sets worrying benchmarks with a maximum fine in the amount of 20 million euros or 4 percent of a company group’s worldwide turnover in the preceding year, without, however, providing concrete guidelines for calculation or determination of the amount of the fine.