Our competencies and experience from many years of advising numerous clients on the implementation of an effective compliance structure and on measures to prevent and deal with compliance cases are bundled in our HR Compliance and Occupational Health and Safety Practice Group. The Practice Group combines our competencies in the areas of
- Core Compliance: From compliance audits to the implementation of effective compliance structures – we are your partner when it comes to the prevention, detection and monitoring of compliance issues under labor law.
- Third-party staffing: Employee leasing, freelancers, employer of record, crowdworking – our experts advise you on the legally compliant use of third-party staff, support you in the implementation and accompany you in official or legal proceedings.
- Occupational health and safety: Together with you, we maintain an overview of the wide range of occupational health and safety requirements, from working time protection to risk assessment and instruction, and we support you in setting up a legally compliant occupational health and safety organization.
We offer you comprehensive, practice-oriented consultation in the fields of HR compliance and occupational health and safety in order to classify and efficiently minimize any legal risks. We support you in the identification of risks in existing structures, the appropriate response and future prevention. At the crossroads between labor law and criminal law, our network of experienced attorneys in other fields enables us to provide our clients with optimal support in form of a 360° approach. We also use innovative consulting services – such as our LegalTech tool SV-Status Check for checking the social security status of employees and our tool for whistleblowing.
In recent years, many companies have increasingly focused on the issue of compliance. In this context, internal investigations for the internal clarification of possible legal violations or internal misconduct are becoming more and more important and are being carried out with increasing frequency.
We support and advise our clients conceptually on all issues that may arise in this context. This includes in particular preventive measures such as the introduction of efficient compliance structures, compliance and ethics policies as well as whistleblower guidelines, taking into account the co-determination rights of the works council, in order to avoid later problems as far as possible or to establish an effective compliance structure following a completed compliance investigation.
In addition, we conduct compliance audits and screenings in advance, in which existing structures and systems are analyzed comprehensively. This ensures an optimal risk assessment and the minimization of existing risks. Since proper advice in these areas often raises more than just labor and data protection issues, we have established a Compliance Task Force for this purpose in cooperation with other specialists in antitrust, corporate and criminal law.
In addition, we regularly advise on the clarification and sanctioning of compliance violations under labor law. In order to prepare possible contentious proceedings in the best possible way, we conduct internal investigations with the necessary discretion and confidentiality or support the internal organizational units entrusted with them. In the course of internal investigations, a large number of labor law issues arise, which we examine, supervise and manage: Does the works council have to be involved? Does the employee concerned have a right to legal counsel during an interview, which may have to be financed by the company? May employees’ e-mail accounts be viewed without their consent? What deadlines must be met? As part of the investigation, we evaluate documents and data in compliance with data protection regulations, conduct interviews with the persons involved and secure evidence that can be used in court. Here, too, we work closely with our colleagues from the Compliance Task Force.
In the course of or after the conclusion of an internal investigation, further questions arise regarding the possible legal consequences and the sanctioning of identified violations, in particular for the persons involved and affected: Are the facts of the case suitable to justify a termination, possibly an extraordinary termination? What deadlines must be met, especially with regard to extraordinary termination? How must the works council or the affected employee be involved? We advise our clients comprehensively on the implementation of these sanctions and the further consequences and also accompany any subsequent court proceedings (e.g. proceedings for protection against dismissal).
The coordination of our communication concept, both internally towards supervisory bodies, employee representatives and employees as well as externally, is also part of our consulting spectrum.
An essential subject of compliance is the correct works council remuneration, especially with regard to threatening consequences of the acting persons in case of a violation of the prohibition of favoritism and discrimination. We review the works council compensation of companies, evaluate the comparison groups and hypothetical promotion positions. We also support companies with guidelines, checklists and workshops. If unavoidable, we also handle the corresponding litigation.
More specifically, our key priorities are:
- Screening and compliance audit
- Implementation of compliance structures
- Introduction of compliance policies
- Cooperation with specialists in antitrust, corporate and criminal law
- Conducting and supporting internal investigations
- Evaluation of investigation results
- Securing evidence that can be used in court
- Coordination of internal and external communication concepts
- Sanctioning of compliance violations
The manifestations of third-party personnel are as diverse as the legal and practical challenges of their legally compliant deployment. We advise and represent you on the client and contractor side in all areas and stages of the deployment of third-party personnel: from strategic planning, implementation and execution to dealing with any legal violations and liability issues.
Our main focus is:
- Legal and strategic advice on all forms of external staff deployment (service and work contracts, employee leasing, freelancers, employer of record, crowdworking, contracting, interim management etc.)
- Drafting, reviewing and negotiating contracts
- Representation in and out of court before labor, social and ordinary courts (e.g. in the context of status proceedings, equal pay, liability disputes or official permits)
- Design and implementation of compliance management systems
- Cooperation with specialists in criminal and tax law
Occupational health and safety
In the areas of occupational safety and health, we are one of the few law firms that offer targeted and specialized advice. A functioning occupational safety and health system is essential in companies from a compliance point of view, if only because of the considerable liability risks and the threat of consequences under administrative offences and criminal law. This requires the correct knowledge and application of a multitude of legal and sublegal standards, regulations and technical rules. Through our Practice Group, we can efficiently bundle and specifically apply the experience gained from day-to-day consulting on occupational health and safety issues.
More specifically, our key areas of focus are:
- Support in official proceedings including fine proceedings – We provide support in communicating with the relevant supervisory authorities so that on-site appointments and official proceedings run as smoothly as possible and without interfering with business operations.
- Contestation of penalty notices and representation in opposition proceedings and court proceedings
- Legal review and evaluation of occupational health and safety issues – We provide comprehensive advice on all occupational health and safety issues in day-to-day operations and work with external service providers for technical occupational health and safety if required.
- Advice on dealing with occupational accidents and on preventive occupational safety measures
Your expert for occupational safety and health is: Meike Christine Rehner
Your contact persons