German employment law is neither standardised nor definitively codified. There is therefore no special code of employment and no standard law governing employment contracts. Rather, German employment law is – insofar as it governed by legal norms at all – covered by a number of other different laws. The judicial development of the law is also very important.
German employment law can be divided into three areas:
- Individual employment law: This includes the rules on the drafting, content and termination of employment contracts.
- Collective employment law: This governs the legal relationships between the coalitions under employment law (trade unions, employers and employer associations) and the bodies representing the workforce (work councils and staff councils as well as executives’ representative committees).
- Occupational health and safety legislation: This covers the obligations that the individual employer must fulfi l with respect to public authorities and which have a direct effect on the individual employees.