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What happens when you lose your job in Germany?

Updated: Mar 16, 2023

Getting laid off at an unexpected time can be stressful and difficult, but knowing your rights can make it easier for you to get back on track after a layoff.

Image related to losing a job in Germany, showing a person at a desk feeling stressed and packing stuff

Losing your job in Germany can be a difficult and stressful experience. While unemployment can happen to anyone, it is important to know what to do when it occurs and what your rights are. In this article, we will explore what happens when you lose your job in Germany and what steps you should take to get back on your feet.

What happens when you lose your job in Germany?

Get started as soon as possible

Getting laid off is devastating, especially if it comes as a surprise. However, you must act immediately. In Germany, you have three weeks from the day you receive a written termination notice to file a dismissal protection suit (Kündigungsschutzklage).

All employees who have passed their probationary period (usually six months) are eligible to file a dismissal protection suit.

The dismissal protection suit can be filed by you on your own or by a lawyer. Generally, a dismissal protection suit seeks to have you reinstated. Most often, however, both parties agree on severance pay packages.

Depending on the number of years you worked for the company, your severance pay could equal your monthly gross salary multiplied by that number. The rate can be even higher if you have only been employed for a short period of time.

What steps should you take when you lose your job in Germany?

  1. Inform the job center: The job center will help you find a new job, provide you with job search support and offer training and education opportunities.

  2. Register as unemployed: To receive unemployment benefits, you must register as unemployed with the job center. You will need to provide proof of your employment and earnings, as well as proof that you have been laid off. Those who are unemployed in Germany are entitled to unemployment benefits, which are funded by contributions from employers and employees. Based on your previous earnings and length of employment, you will receive around 60% of your previous net salary on average.

  3. Start searching for a new job: While receiving unemployment benefits, you are required to actively search for a new job. This means you must attend job fairs, send out applications and attend job interviews.

  4. Consider additional training or education: If you have difficulty finding a new job, you may consider additional training or education to improve your chances of finding employment. The job center can provide you with information on available programs and how to apply.

  5. Seek legal advice: If you feel that your rights have been violated or if you have any questions about your rights, you can seek legal advice from a qualified lawyer.

In conclusion, losing your job in Germany can be a difficult and stressful experience, but it is important to know your rights and what steps to take to get back on your feet. With the support of the job center and unemployment benefits, as well as a commitment to actively searching for a new job, you can find employment and get back to work as soon as possible.

how to find a job in Germany

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