Corona! Quarantine, closed schools/ daycare centres – who pays the salary?

Questions and answers concerning home office, paid/unpaid leave, quarantine, closed schools/kindergartens and what this means for continued pay.

Overview of the most important questions and answers

The coronavirus is spreading more and more and has also reached the workplace.
In the following, we provide an overview of the most important questions and answers in this context.

A quarantine can be ordered.
The basis for this is the Infection Protection Act. Responsible for health are the offices of the federal states.

Home office/ Vacation
Unless otherwise provided for in the employment contract, the employer cannot – by virtue of the law on the right of management – order home office or leave. In the present case, however, the employer has a duty of care for its employees. Against this background, it may be justifiable for the employer to order a home office in the event of a specific occasion.

If the employee works in the home office, he works and receives his remuneration. If an authority orders quarantine, the employee receives compensation in accordance with the Infection Protection Act for 6 weeks, which corresponds to the amount of his loss of earnings.

If the employer orders a compulsory break/quarantine, the employer must continue to pay the salary.

Closed school/nursery
In principle, the employee must provide (alternative) care for his or her children. If this is not excluded in the employment contract, however, the employee is entitled to continued remuneration for a relatively insignificant period of time.

Irrespective of the above, employers and employees should talk to each other in order to find an individual solution for each situation – be it in the form of taking paid or unpaid leave, working in a home office or reducing overtime.


If you have any questions in this regard or in general regarding employment law, our lawyer Christian Seidel, specialist solicitor for employment law, will be happy to assist you.

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