Easier access to short-time work allowance Application deadline for short-time work extended

Companies can continue to benefit from easier access to short-term work allowance. The government has extended the application deadline by three months to 30 June 2021. Temporary agency workers can also benefit.

The photo shows a sales assistant at work.

Many companies have seen their income drop as a result of the pandemic – short-time work helps them retain staff.

Photo: picture alliance/dpa/Rolf Vennenbernd

Companies that introduce short-time work for the first time by 30 June, and companies that re-introduce short-time work after a three month break are eligible for easier access to short-time work allowance until 31 December 2021. The provisions have hitherto applied only to companies that introduced short-time work by 31 March 2021.

The following provisions remain in place:

  • A company can apply for short-time work when at least ten per cent of its workforce are affected by a loss of work. Under normal circumstances the cut-off point is 30 per cent.
  • There is no requirement that workers must first collect negative hours on their working time accounts.
  • Temporary agency workers will also have access to short-time work allowance.

With this regulation, the German government has given affected companies and their workforce a secure basis on which to plan. The aim is not to jeopardise achievements to date in avoiding unemployment.

The Federal Minister of Labour and Social Affairs and the Federal Employment Agency provide answers to frequently asked questions. The Agency also offers important information in sign language.