Germany – National Regulations in Employment Law


We, the International Labour and Employment Group of Rödl & Partner, are happy to advise you on labour law issues (individual and collective) as well as social security law issues on a global, regional and local level.



Below you will find basic information on national labour law provisions in Germany.

Interview with Dr. Michael Braun

Are there national and/or local collective agreements in the country that regulate labour relations?

Yes. But not mandatory. If the employer is a member of the employer's association and the employee is a member of the relevant trade union, the case is clear: The collective agreement applies.


Are there different legal rules by department/canton?

No. Labour Law is uniform nationwide.


Is there and what is the staff threshold above which the presence of staff representatives is mandatory?

No. It is not mandatory to establish a works council. The employer does not have to become active here. Works council may be elected by employees from 5 permanent employees entitled to vote.

Are trade unions present in the company?

Yes. If at least one employee is member of a competent trade union.


If applicable what is the applicable legal working time? 

The legal daily working time is regularly 8 hours.
The daily working time may be extended to a maximum 10 hours, if the average working time does not exceed 48 hours per week.


Is there a minimum wage set by law/collective agreements (yes/no)? 

Yes. By the law and, if more favorable, by collective agreements.

What is the number of legal annual paid holidays?

24 days paid vacation per calendar year based on a 6-day week are the minimum by law. Collective agreements may provide for a higher minimum.

Existence of specific classification of employees according to their functions/responsibilities? 

Yes. In some legal provisions, executive employees (to be assessed according to function/responsibility in the individual case) are excluded from the scope of application.


Obligation to set up complementary social insurance schemes (mutual insurance/provident fund/pension)?

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