Danckert Bärlein Partner

Criminal Liability in Employment Law

The complex scheme of criminal laws governing employment are directed solely at employers. The increasing regimentation of work life has led to increasing legal regulation which often include criminal and administrative provisions and therefore serious risks for executives.

Criminal provisions relating to employment can also be found in existing laws relating to employment, taxation, administration, and benefits law, as well as in the Penal Code. Regulations are also found in the Act to Combat Illegal Employment, the Works Constitution Act, the Law on Posting of Workers, the Law on Temporary Employment, the Working Time Act, the Safety and Health at Work Act, the Residency Act, the Asylum Law, and the Social Security Statute Book, to name just a few. Many cases involve violations of the minimum-wage law, illegal employment, illegal use of temporary employees and withhold of social security contributions (§ 266a Penal Code), each of which can have criminal tax-law consequences as well.

These matters require a rapid investigation of the business context in which decisions took place as well as routine interactions with specialized agencies such as customs and tax authorities. It is also imperative to understand possible additional consequences of employment-law allegations. These generally have to do with liabilities for taxes and compensatory damages, as well as restrictions on a firm’s competitive possibilities imposed by notations in the central corporate registry or the corruption registry. Other penalties can include bans on participating in certain trades or the revocation or non-issuance of official concessions.

Our lawyers have dealt with these matters in numerous trials and scholarly publications, and are therefore able to always keep the big picture in view.

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