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German Labor Law in Transition

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  06 March 2019

Extract

For decades, German labor law has been among the most advanced in the world, although no labor code was ever enacted like, for e.g., in France with its ‘Code du travail’ adopted on 15th November 1973. In Germany, after World War II, German labor legislation developed a great variety of specific Acts covering individual and collective labor law. Basics, like protection against dismissal or collective bargaining, as well as employee participation in works councils, reached a high level. Although German law belongs to the Continental legal systems and thus is mainly based on legislation, some of the most important aspects of collective labor law, especially trade union law and the right to strike are not regulated by statutory law. Bundesarbeitsgericht (the Federal Labor Court) and Bundesverfassungsgericht (the Federal Constitutional Court) filled in the blanks step by step in a variety of decisions. Accordingly, these crucial fields of labor relations are based on mere case law. It turned out to be politically impossible to get trade union law and the law on strike and lock-outs enacted. Despite statements to the contrary, the parties involved seem to be content with this rather flexible handling. On the whole, German labor law became more and more protective over the years, including aspects like equality and prohibition of discrimination in employment, sick-leave payment, and the possibility to claim a part-time job under the 2000 Act on Teilzeit- und Befristungsgesetz – TzBfG (Part Time and Temporary Work).

Type
Developments
Copyright
Copyright © 2005 by German Law Journal GbR 

References

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