Coronavirus: Work

What do I need to know?

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The COVID-19 pandemic has changed life. In the past years, pandemic developments and safety measures also affected our jobs as many companies had to close temporarily or switch to short-time work ("Kurzarbeit"). The labour market has recently recovered to some extent, yet Coronavirus continues to cause myriad difficulties.

Nevertheless, COVID restrictions are being lifted in Germany - also at workplaces. However, the so-called “basic protection measures” should continue to apply in workplaces until May 25, 2022. Here you can learn more about the current measures and your rights and options as an employee during the COVID-19 pandemic. You can learn about state aids for employees, students, the self-employed and families in our chapter “Coronavirus: State Aids”.

What do I need to know?

How can I protect myself at work?

What rules currently apply to workplaces?

Is my employer allowed to ask about my vaccination status?

Is there a vaccination mandate for employees/workers?

I got infected with Corona at work. What should I do?

Do I have to work overtime during the Coronavirus pandemic?

Can I stay home to look after my child/children?

What happens if my employer sends me home, because I am ill?

Will I receive wages if I don't make it to my workplace (e.g., when public transport stops working)?

Will I still receive wages if I am quarantined?

Will I receive wages if I contract the coronavirus and cannot work?

Will I receive wages if my company is closed due to the pandemic?

What happens if I lose my job while living here on a work visa?

Where can I find help and support?

What do I need to know about short-time work (“Kurzarbeit”)?

What does short-time work (“Kurzarbeit“) mean?

How much wages can I receive when on short-time work?

What can I do if my short-time allowance is insufficient?

Can I take a part-time job during short-time work?

Can subcontracted workers ("Leiarbeiter") also receive short-time work benefits?

Does short-time work also apply to those who are doing "Ausbildung"?


If you suspect that you are infected, contact your doctor or the local Health Department. They can tell you what to do next. Please do not go to the doctor's office before first calling them. Another option is to go to your doctors' office during the visiting hours specifically assigned to COVID patients if they have such visiting hours. You can find your local Health Department's contact details on the website of the Robert Koch Institute.