German law about employment

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Hello, I've been googling about German laws related to the contracts you can get, but I could find few information or was very confusing, I tried to search here too but maybe I am using the wrong keywords for it.

I'd like to know what is the law in Germany related to permanent contracts, I read before that after 2 years the company you work for has to give you a permanent contract, if not that means you will not get renewed after. There is also people from my work that have said on the 4th contract they need to give you permanent and then there's other people that said that they did the contracts with loopholes so in case I want to complain about it or something, that in there doesn't say the time I started, like if it's always a complete new contract without showing the date that I actually started. I am somewhat confused, uncertain of what is right or wrong. Anyone that could redirect me to some links that explain about this? Thank you.

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If I were you, I'd consult a Fachanwalt für Arbeitsrecht so that you get up-to-date information from an expert. In this case, it's probably worth the money. Be sure to get a citation from the actual statute to back you up.

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I did some research on this when this situation came up for me some years ago. I'm no authority though so please do seek advice from someone who knows, as stated in the previous post.

 

What I found out (I could be wrong, I don't know) was that an employer can extend a fixed term contract up to 3 times within a 2 year period and after that they must make you permanent if they want to keep you doing the same job. If the job description changes, then the contract can change to reflect this and they can start the whole fixed term contract thing again, thus allowing them to avoid making you permanent.

 

Please do check out though with someone who knows. As I said, I'm no authority.

 

EDIT: found this http://www.gesetze-im-internet.de/tzbfg/__14.html

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I don't know if it's law but this all fits with my experience where I was initially given a 12 month contract, followed by two 6 month ones and then, after the two years I was reviewed and given an unlimited one. The alternative at that point would have been no contract.

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From what I have researched, that's right. The employer can make up to 3 temporary contracts for up to 2 years and then he has to offer a permanent contract.

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... an employer can extend a fixed term contract up to 3 times within a 2 year period and after that they must make you permanent if they want to keep you doing the same job. If the job description changes, then the contract can change to reflect this and they can start the whole fixed term contract thing again, thus allowing them to avoid making you permanent.

 

I can confirm what Kazalphaville wrote - they are not allowed, by law, to extend a fixed-term contract more than 3 times within a 2-year period, and *must* offer you a permanent contract after that. However, there are lots of ways to get around this, if your employer really wants to. All they have to do is change the job description or title, and then they can start over with up to 3 fixed-term contracts. I know one person who has been working on fixed-term contracts for years, because of an unscrupulous employer.

 

Disclaimer: I am not a lawyer, please get any advice given here corroborated by a legal professional.

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But I believe this also depends on what you mean by "fixed term contract". If you have that contract directly for the employing company, then yes, there is a rule about how often or for how long they can keep extending without offering you permanent.

 

If your contract is with a different company (such as Dienstleister), and the fixed-term contracts are with the customer, this rule does not apply afaik (unless you are hired out on AÜG-basis...but then you will pretty certainly be chucked out after the, I believe currently 2 years, because AÜG is closely scrutinized), and certainly not if you are a freelancer working through an agency at a customer site.

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Ok, my question is, in my case I will be working for one year soon in this company and it will be my 4th contract, they could still keep on giving contract with a certain amount of months correct? Or is it about the 2 years, no matter if it's the 4th or not, and then after 2 years I can ask for a permanent? Usually when the time comes to renew for the next one, when we ask about it they usually say 'i don't know' and it gets weird or we simply get renewed right away. When I was going to get my first renewal, I asked within the last 2 weeks and they kept saying this then a day or two before it ended I got the next one which was less months than the previous one. Second time it was right on the starting of the 2 weeks period that they are supposed to tell you, whether you will be or not.

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Unfortunately for employees in this situation, there was a landmark decision by the European Court of Justice in January 2012 that ruled that this type of repeated short-term contract (known in German as Kettenverträge) is allowed, as long as the company has a valid reason.

 

Article on the court decision and its potential ramifications on Spiegel Online (in German)

 

Wikipedia article on Kettenvertrag (also in German)

 

In short, there are loopholes big enough to drive a truck through. You can ask for a longer-term contract, but the company is not obliged to give you one, unless you can prove in court that they don't have a valid reason. One example of a valid reason is that you're filling in for other employees who are on long-term sick leave or maternity/paternity leave.

 

In general, your chances are better if they've been stringing you on for two years or more, but even then they have a lot of leeway.

 

=5228&tx_ttnews[backPid]=742&cHash=b9d3ba142f31f60d327d4e32747fa8a1"]There was another decision in March of this year in which the state of Hesse was forced to give a teacher a regular position, but she had been going from temporary contract to temporary contract for 10 years from that point. So the bar is set fairly high.

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