Do I have to work 24 7
Exceptions to this rule are possible to a limited extent. They can be made through a collective agreement or by the supervisory authority (in Hesse: the regional councils) and can be found in §7 ArbZG.
Exceptions due to collective agreements
In a collective agreement or in a works agreement based on a collective agreement, the following can be agreed:
- The working time can be extended to over 10 hours if there is regular and substantial availability / standby duty (Section 7 (1) ArbZG).
- The compensation period of 24 weeks can be extended to one year (§7 (1) and §7 (8) ArbZG).
- The daily working time can be extended to over 8 hours without time compensation, if during this working time there is regular and substantial work readiness or on-call duty. The employees concerned must voluntarily consent in writing in an additional contract beforehand and can revoke this consent in writing at any time with a period of six months. It must be ensured that the health of the employees is not endangered (Section 7 (2a) and (Section 7 (7) ArbZG).
- Further opening clauses bound by collective bargaining agreements concern employees in agriculture, employees in the treatment, care and care of people, in the public service and in public religious communities (§ 7 (2) and § 7 (4) ArbZG).
Companies that are not bound by collective bargaining agreements can adopt regulations from those collective agreements that would apply to them if they were bound by collective bargaining agreements. In this case, the entire collective agreement on working hours must be adopted. A works or service agreement with the works council or staff council or, if this does not exist, a written agreement with the employees is also required (Section 7 (3) ArbZG).
Churches and religious communities under public law can also provide for the deviations in their regulations (Section 7 (4) ArbZG).
Exceptions based on approval from the supervisory authority
The responsible occupational health and safety authority (in Hesse the regional councils) can approve longer daily working hours in the following cases (§15 ArbZG):
- Continuous shift operations, if this results in additional free shifts
- Construction and assembly sites
- For seasonal and campaign operations during the season, if the working hours do not exceed 8 hours on average
- For situations that are in the public interest
For all exceptions by the supervisory authority, the weekly working time of 48 hours may not be exceeded on average of 24 weeks (6 months) (§15 (4) ArbZG).
Different regulations for young people, pregnant and breastfeeding women as well as the severely disabled
Special regulations must be observed for the following groups of employees:
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