Paid annual leave days in Germany have been the subject of several decisions by the European Court of Justice (ECJ) in the recent past. The Luxembourg judges regularly opposed the previous case law of the Federal Labor Court regarding paid annual leave days. In the past, this concerned, among other things, the forfeiture provisions in the Federal Paid Leave Act. The ECJ – and subsequently also the Federal Labor Court – consider the employer to be under an obligation to inform employees about existing paid annual leave entitlements as well as their forfeiture and to request that they be claimed (we reported). Only then is there any forfeiture at all. In three recent decisions, the ECJ has once again comprehensively dealt with the employer’s obligations in connection with paid annual leave entitlements.
A recent decision of the German Federal Labor Court (Bundesarbeitsgericht) shows yet again that the issue of working time remains highly fraught for German employers. Following a 2019 ruling of the European Court of Justice (ECJ) setting forth an obligation on the part of European Union employers to establish objective, reliable, and accessible systems for recording their employees’ daily working time, the subject of working time became a widely discussed topic throughout Germany.
The German government’s plans and actions to address the Corona pandemic this fall and winter are becoming more concrete: On September 8, 2022, the German parliament passed new measures aimed at fighting Covid-19 this Fall. This includes rewriting the SARS-CoV-2 Occupational Health and Safety Regulation (the “Regulation”), which is scheduled to take effect October 1, 2022 through April 7, 2023.
As fall is upon us and case numbers are expected to rise, the federal government is working full speed ahead on new protective measures for the coming six months to combat the impending wave of new infections.
As early as December 2019, the “Whistleblower Directive” RL 2019/1937 (as it is colloquially called) was adopted at the European level. This directive aims to strengthen the protection of persons who report suspicions of possible legal violations committed by companies or authorities (“whistleblowers”).