Slider

The district labour court of Lower Saxony (LAG Niedersachsen 30.07.2014, 16 TaBV 92/13) has rejected a claim of a works council to be provided by the company with unrestricted internet access and a telephone line separate from the company's systems.

A recent rise in the amount of unpaid internships in Germany has become a controversial subject both in the political discussion as well as of recent court decisions. Desperate Job seekers willing to do anything to get hired meet companies that try to minimize their personell costs, a behaviour much criticized and coming under the legal scrutiny of labour courts. A recent decision of the Landesarbeitsgericht Hamm, shows, that employers must be careful when agreeing such unpaid internship.

Employees joining the services of a competitor after having terminated their contract are a fear for many companies. The loss of knowledge ,contacts and ultimately business often is real. Thus it is understandable that employers want to protect themselves. German employment law however contains a number of pitfalls employers should avoid when agreeing a post contractual non compete.

A recently published decision of the Federal Labour Court of March 19th 2014(5 AZR 252/12) confirmed that language abilities of employees are not relevant for the validity of an employment contract. The case was brought forward by a Portuguese national, who, without being able to speak German signed a German employment contract, which expressly excluded a claim brought forward by him at the end of his employment.

Relations between employers and employees in Germany are extensively regulated under German labor and employment law. German labor and employment law is strongly biased in favour of employees. For non-German employers it is essential to know some of the specifics of the German labor and employment law when employing staff in Germany. Set out below are some of these basic facts:

During the last week many travelers in Germany felt trapped. On Friday Cockpit, the union representing pilots, called for a warning strike at Lufthansa, following which some 280 mostly European and Intra German fights were cancelled. On Saturday morning GDL, the union representing train drivers at Deutsche Bahn, followed with a similar action, which brought rail traffic to a temporary standstill. Meanwhile further strikes have happened and, if the unions are to be believed, more of the same can be expected in the next weeks, since the underlying disputes have not been resolved.

The highest German Civil Court, Bundesgerichtshof (BGH), has taken the opportunity to publish a landmark decision on non-solicitation clauses between companies as far as employees are concerned (Bundesgerichtshof, Decision of April 30, 2014; Az.: 1 ZR/245/12).

A recent decision of the LAG Baden Württemberg, the district labour Court for the state of Baden Württemberg, of April 9th, 2014 (19 TaBV 7/13) may have a significant impact on the inclusion of German employees into a foreign stock option plan.

OUR OFFER

We offer German employment law advice and all necessary documentation tailor-made to your client’s needs. At reliable and fixed fees. On time.

In case your client intents to establish a subsidiary in Germany or wants to hire a first employee. Or he needs to appoint a new Managing Director, wants to hire a Freelancer or a Works Council is about to be elected in the German entity. He asks you for a recommendation for legal advice in Germany. You worry that your client is not happy, because services abroad are provided untimely and slow, without adequate knowledge of legal language and culture background and especially because estimated fees are exceeded. Such situation, for which you bear no responsibility except the choice of firm, can easily turn ugly and endanger your client relationship at home.

GUARANTEED FAST RESPONSE

We guarantee to answer any mail or phone call received on a working day within 24 hours (except weekend) latest.

HOW DOES IT WORK?

We explain legal requirements, traps and pitfalls of German labour and employment law. We provide documents, which are individualized according to your client’s needs. All documents and information are either in English or bilingual (German – English) depending on the requirements.

HELPLINE

We will be available on phone or via mail for further questions or discussions with you and/or your client as long as needed to satisfy all client’s needs. We guarantee to answer any mail or phone call received on a working day within 24 hours (except weekend) latest. We will be available on phone or via mail for further questions or discussions with you and/or your client as long as needed to satisfy all client‘s needs.

HOW MUCH DOES IT COST?

We charge a one-time fixed fee agreed on the time of engagement. This fee includes all documents, their individualisation and all necessary information about mandatory German employment laws as well as customary practices. A typical start-up set will be available for US$ 2,000 to 4,000 (depending on the size of operation). In any case we guarantee transparent and budget-oriented solutions, which will be considerably different from any charges based on the hourly fees.

WHAT IF YOUR CLIENT NEEDS MORE SERVICES?

We are closely working together with a boutique tax consultancy firm, which provides tax advice and day to day payroll services at fixed and reasonable monthly fees. As far as other areas of law are concerned e.g. corporate, IP or property laws we work with an established network of boutique firms which are able to provide the same high quality at reasonable (often fixed) fees. If your client needs additional employment services, such as the application for work permits or has specific requirements e.g. for negotiations with Works Councils and Trade Unions he can chose either from our fixed fee offers or retain us at reasonable (hourly) fees of well below € 300 net. Further it is our practice not to charge for full fees for travel times and we do not charge any ancillary costs (e.g. for secretarial services).

YOUR BENEFIT

You can offer your client a high-quality service provided by experienced international lawyers at fixed and reasonable fees. You don’t need to worry any more about clients complaining about excessive or intransparent costs of foreign experts or about timelines not observed.

WHO ARE WE?

We are boutique employment law firm based in Munich, Germany. Our partners have previously worked in large international firms for more than 25 years. We know the business and deal with international client need on a day to day basis.

Due to our size and extensive use of technology we are able to use profitably without charging clients excessive hourly fees without limits. Because we know our business we are able to calculate fixed fees in any situation.