German Attorney for Remuneration, Overtime, Bonus and Additional Payment Claims
When working in Germany, there is a possibility of running into issues regarding unpaid remuneration, unpaid overtime hours, bonus, and additional unpaid benefits that you are entitled to as an employee. It is important to learn your rights in this regard.
Whether an employer is late to pay your salary or you have recently received a termination notice, proper remuneration of employees is protected under German Law.
If you were recently terminated, your salary must be paid as stipulated in your employment contract, but also in accordance to Labor Law. In certain cases, you may even have room to negotiate a severance package. Read on about how we can help you with termination and resignation in Germany.
Unpaid overtime claims
While it is commonly discouraged to do overtime work (Überstunden) in Germany and much of the EU, there still remain such cases, in particular with regards to well-paid executives or sales positions. The increase of digital/home office has blurred the lines between private time and work time, creating an increase risk of unpaid overtime. Furthermore, overtime claims are frequently used to increase pressure on the employer in Separation and Unfair Dismissal Cases.
Another payment that may need to be claimed is unpaid bonuses. These can include commissions, incentives, and supplemental pay. Bonus claims are also frequently used to increase pressure on the employer in Separation and Unfair Dismissal Cases.
Additional Payment Claims
Sick pay (sick leave)
When an employee falls ill or gets injured, they are allowed to take time off from work. After three days of incapacitation, a doctor’s certificate is required of the employee. According to German law, employees are entitled to 100% of their salary from their employer during the first six weeks of their sick leave due to the same sickness. With sickness allowances extending past six weeks, employees can expect up to 70% of their salary to be paid.
Although employers are not obliged to pay an employee’s salary during parental leave, they may be entitled to benefits provided by the government. These benefits can be claimed even if you are a citizen of another EU country or a third country, provided you live and work in Germany.
Under German Employment Law, pensions (company pension schemes and pension plans) are granted by the employer to his employees for protection in the event of retirement, disability or death. Detailed provisions for company pension schemes and pension plans and how they are implemented into the system of German Employment Law can be found in the Betriebsrentengesetz (BetrAVG). In this statute are also laid down the different implementation routes available for pensions under German Law: direct compensation, provident fund, pension fund and direct insurance. Besides regular employees, company pension schemes and pension plans are also available for directors and non-controlling shareholders of a GmbH as well as for officers (Vorstand) of an Aktiengesellschaft (AG) or a Genossenschaft (eG).
When it comes to disputes over pension schemes under German Employment Law, they are typically related to at least one of the following aspects:
- Remedies against the underfunding of company pension schemes (BAV)
- Unreasonably low adjustment of company pensions
- Unreasonably low adjustment of company pensions after corporate restructuring
- Pension claims after forced retirements
- Pension claims of surviving dependents