Pension Disputes (BAV)

Pension disputes (BAV), pension plans and company pension schemes under German Law

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 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).

The benefits of pension plans and company pension schemes (BAV) under German Law

In Germany, company pension schemes are introduced for two reasons: Firstly because the employee does not have to deduct tax or social insurance from the contributions he pays in and the dividends are usually paid out at a lower tax rate. Secondly, because the employer can also contribute free of social security deductions and the contributions are classified as business expenses from a tax perspective. German Employment Law provides a fairly high level of legal protection for the employees’ claims under the company pension scheme (e.g. vesting, interdiction of assett consumption, credit ban, adaptation assessment obligation and bankruptcy protection via the Pensionssicherungsverein – PSV). This also applies to expats in Germany. Further, every three years the employer has to deliver a substantiated notification regarding the pension’s adjustment to the employee: If the adjustment appears to be unreasonably low, the employee may object in writing within 3 months. In general, it can be held that under German Employment Law the employer is liable to the employee for the once-promised benefits of the company pension scheme.

The risks of pension plans and company pension schemes (BAV) under German Law

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

• Pensions claims of surviving dependents

German Employment Lawyer

Our German Employment Lawyers will act for you in disputes on pension plans or company pensions schemes. In the field of German Employment Law it is primarily Attorney at Law Dr. Christian Zeller who will provide courtroom representation for you or your business. Attorney Dr. Zeller will determinently act on your behalf before all German Employment Courts, Higher Labor Courts and the Federal Labour Court.

We are available for our clients 24 hours a day, 7 days a week by phone (+49 (0) 69-58 80 972-40), by email ( or by contact form. You may also book a cost-free initial consultancy appointment with one of our German Lawyers by using the 24/7 access on the left side. Besides, you have the option to request a call-back within 24 hours or to start a live chat with us. We look forward to speaking with you.


Recommended Links:

German Employment Law Blog – Federal Labour Court on default interest regarding an adjustment claim for a company pension scheme

- German Employment Law Blog – Federal Labor Court on German Pension Dispute and Attorney‘s double failure to meet deadlines

Live Chat - Protokoll


Live Chat - Protokoll