Sick Leave In Germany – Everything you need to know

This post contains affiliate links. It means that if you click on the links and make a purchase, we will receive a small commission at no additional cost to you. This allows our blog to continue providing you with free information. We only include links and products that we truly believe in. You can read the full disclosure here.

Do you know your rights as an employee in Germany? How many paid sick leave can you take in Germany? Do you know you may change your annual leave to sick leave if you are sick on your vacation? What happens if you need to take a long term sick leave? Do you know you can take sick leave as well if your kid is sick? In this post, you will find everything you need to know about taking sick leave in Germany.

Moving to Germany or new in Germany? Check out our Resources Page for all the help you need!


When I first started working in Germany, I noticed something really odd to me. When I had a cold with running nose or coughing, my boss and my colleagues told me to take sick leave and go home. They didn’t seem to appreciate at all that I was still working in the office even though I was sick. On the opposite, they seemed to be really annoyed by the fact that I was in office. They made me feel that I was going to infect all the others in the office and it was a selfish act from my side.

You are encouraged to take sick leave in Germany when you are sick

At first, I thought they were just joking. Then I found out that they really meant it. Everybody was scared to see someone being sick because they didn’t want to get sick themselves.

This is completely different from how it is in my home town Hong Kong! Normally, nobody would take sick leave in Hong Kong just because of a cold. I even knew people who still went to work when they had a fever! People in Hong Kong did not want to take sick leave because management would not like it. Some people consider taking sick leave as being lazy at work. And if you are still working even though you are sick, it shows that you are responsible and hardworking.

In Germany, you are encouraged to take sick leave if you are sick, even if it is just a cold. It is not uncommon to hear someone having sick leave for one week because they have a flu. This sounded completely crazy to me because this would never happen in Hong Kong.

Well, an average employee only has two to three weeks paid vacation leave in a year and 2 days paid sick leave per month in Hong Kong.

Read also: Pharmacies in Germany – Guide for Expats

How to take sick leave in Germany?

In Germany, your employer will need your sick note (Arbeitsunfähigkeitsbescheinigung) if you take more than three consecutive days of sick leave. This needs to be done by the fourth day of work latest. But the policies can be different for different companies.

For example, some companies may already request you for a sick note on the first day of sick leave. That is why you should check with your employer to make sure you comply with the policy.

You should inform your employer in Germany as soon as possible once you decide to take sick leave. You do not have the obligation to tell your employer what sickness you have.

In the past, you will receive three copies of sick note from your doctor: one for your employer, one for the health insurance, and one for your own record.

Now, if you have public health insurance, you will only get one sick note for yourself. The sick note will be electronically sent to your health insurance and your employer. This reduces a lot of paperwork.

It is best to always ask for a sick note if you visit the doctor. Because you never know how long your sickness will last. In the end, you may have to take more than 3 days of sick leave.

Good news: Starting from Oct 2022, you can call your doctor to get your sick note instead of going there physically. This practice was introduced during the Corona time. But the government decided to make it a permanent policy later on.

Read also: Salary in Germany: Are you getting paid enough?

Changing your vacation leave to sick leave in Germany

If you are sick during your vacation, you may be able to change your vacation leave to sick leave in Germany! Shocking, right? I couldn’t believe it when I first heard about it.

For example, you are taking 5 days’ annual leave this week and then you get sick. If this happens in Hong Kong, you are just unlucky and your sickness will ruin your vacation plan.

However, in Germany, you need to go to a doctor and get a sick note. If the doctor gives you a sick note of 5 days, you may be able to apply 5 days sick leave this week instead of using your annual leave. This is because your vacation is supposed to let you be relaxed from work, but it is not for you to be sick at home. You cannot relax when you are sick.

relax yourself at home_sick leave in Germany_my life in germany_hkwomanabroad-min

Can you go to work when you are supposed to take sick leave in Germany?

If you go to the doctor and he gives you a sick note for that day, you can still go to work, as long as the sick note is not sent to your employer. However, if the doctor gives you a sick note for two weeks, and you feel already better after the first week, can you still go to work in the second week?

This happened to my colleague. He felt fine again in the second week so he went to work. The sick note provided to his HR indicated that the sick leave should be two weeks though. This actually created a lot of hassles for him, because HR wanted him to go back to the doctor and change the sick note from two weeks to one week.

The reason is that if something happened to him at work during the second week, the insurance might not cover since he was supposed to stay home according to the doctor. In the end, it was a lot of hassles for him to go back to the doctor and explain the situation and get the administrative work done.

Read also: Making a Will in Germany – Why I Did It Already in My 30s

How much can you get paid when you take sick leave in Germany?

If you have worked for at least 4 weeks before your illness, you can get 100% of your salary from your employer for up to 6 weeks of continuous sick leave period in Germany. If you have the same sickness more than one time in a year, these days will be accumulated.

For the same sickness, this 6-week period will start again if one year has passed since the beginning of your first sick leave, or six months have passed from the end of your last sick leave. If you have a new sickness, then the 6-week period will start again too.

After the 6-week sick leave, you will get sickness benefits from your health insurance in Germany. This is called Krankengeld. You will receive 70% of your gross income, with a maximum of 90% of your net income.

If your salary includes single payments like an extra month Christmas payment, this amount will also be used to calculate how much sickness benefit you will get. You can get this sickness benefit for up to 78 weeks in three years for the same illness.

You can use this sickness benefit calculator as a reference of how much Krankengeld you can get.

Sick leave with private health insurance in Germany

If you have private health insurance, the sickness benefit after the initial 6-week period will vary based on the plan you choose. You would need to check with your insurance for the exact coverage.

Read also: Private vs Public Health Insurance: What is Better for Expats in Germany?

Sick leave for self-employed people in Germany

If you are self-employed, you can receive sickness benefit starting the 7th week of being ill for up to 78 weeks under public health insurance. In case you want to receive payment also before the 7th week, you would need to buy additional health insurance to cover that period.

Sick leave in Germany: sickness benefit insurance (krankentagegeldversicherung)

As mentioned above, you will not get 100% of your salary anymore after the initial 6-week period of sick leave in Germany. So, if you are unlucky and need to take long term sick leave, it can cause you some financial problems, especially when you still need to pay for your fixed expenses like rent and so on.

But don’t worry. As I mentioned in my article, Insurance in Germany – Which one do you need, you can almost insure anything you can think of in Germany.

For example, you can use Tarifcheck to compare different  sickness benefit insurance. Some of these offers can be really affordable and can cost as low as a few EUR per month, depending on the coverage you choose. The insurance can make sure that you still get the difference between your salary and the sickness benefit you receive after the 6 weeks.

Get professional help

If you prefer to get professional advice before buying your insurance, I can highly recommend joining a free English online seminar. The seminar is hosted by financial advisers from Swiss Life Select, one of the largest German financial advisory companies.

By the way, we bought all our insurances via our financial adviser from Swiss Life Select. Our financial adviser does not work for a specific insurance company. Instead, he compares the best offers in the market and gives us independent advice. Besides, he speaks excellent English, which is perfect for expats like me.

You will learn everything you need to know about insurance in Germany in the online seminar. If you want, you can also book a 1:1 meeting with my financial adviser to get a free personal consultation.

Swiss Life Select_free english financial online seminar and 1 to 1 consultation with finance adviser
Disclosure: If you click this link and make a purchase, we will receive a small commission at no additional cost to you.

Common types of sickness for a long term sick leave in Germany

You are probably thinking that you are healthy and never take more than a few days of sick leave in a year. Why would you need insurance for that?

The fact is that more people are taking a long term sick leave than you think in Germany. You may not hear about that so much, because when something happens to those people, you normally don’t see them anymore. They are either staying in a hospital or going through different therapies. That’s why you won’t see them in the office and won’t feel it so much that such shitty things can happen in life.

Long term sick leave in Germany includes both physical or mental illness. The most common types of physical sickness include muscular-skeletal issues or back pain. This is especially common in the winter after the Christmas holiday. Every year we are missing several people in the office because they either break their arms or legs after skiing. And this can take a long time to heal. So, if you plan a ski trip, make sure you carry safe ski accessories and keep in mind all the safety measures.         

Read also: TK Review – My Personal Experience With TK Health Insurance

skiing accident_injury_sick leave in Germany_my life in germany_hkwomanabroad-min

Taking sick leave in Germany due to mental illness

Now you may think that you do not go skiing and you are mentally healthy, so you are safe. Are you sure you are and will stay mentally healthy?

To my surprise, there are more and more people taking sick leave in Germany due to mental incapability. In 2022, every employee took 3.33 days on average due to mental problems. And there is an increasing trend that people are taking more mental sick leave in Germany than in the past.

Mental incapability does not mean that you have to go crazy and have hallucinations and all that stuff. Actually, the most common case for mental incapability is caused by depression. Nowadays, employees have a lot of stress and time pressure at their workplaces which are negatively affecting their mental health. The increasing trend of mental health issues can also be due to people being more open to seeking help for mental problems.

Don’t underestimate mental health issues. People who suffer from mental problems may need medicines and psychological therapies until they can feel good again.

Mental incapability caused by sudden events in life

A colleague of mine did go through one of those therapies after his wife was diagnosed with cancer. It was a disaster for him and he couldn’t concentrate on work anymore due to all the stress and pressure from the sickness of his wife. He ended up taking a few months of sick leave in Germany until he was capable to work again.

Another friend of mine lost her baby in her first pregnancy. Even though she was physically fine again, she couldn’t let go of the fact that she lost her baby and she couldn’t focus on work anymore. She had to see a psychologist and took a long term sick leave as well in Germany.

Read also: Decoding your Reference Letter in Germany (Arbeitszeugnis)

Can you be fired because of taking sick leave in Germany?

As the employment & labor law in Germany is very favorable to the employees, it is not easy for a company in Germany to fire an employee due to a long term sickness or frequent sick leaves. The company can only do so if it can prove that it is highly unlikely that the employee will fully recover, and thus the employee will not be able to fulfill his work duties in the future. But normally this is hard to prove and the German labor court seldom accepts such cases.

Sometimes, a company in Germany will invite an employee to a meeting to discuss about his health, if the employee has a long term sickness or taking frequent sick leave. The aim of the meeting is to see if there is anything that the company can do to improve the health of the employee, e.g. by providing a less stressful work scope or work environment.

The employee doesn’t need to join the meeting if he does not want to. However, not attending this meeting may affect his legal position in case he got laid off in the future due to his sickness.

Read also: Legal Insurance Germany – Expat Guide (+ 3 Best Offers)

fired_dismissal_lay off_sick leave in Germany_my life in germany_hkwomanabroad-min

Unpaid sick leave for family care in Germany (Pflegezeitgesetz)

Pflegezeitgesetz is the law on family care time. This allows the employees to take up to 10 working days of unpaid sick leave in Germany to take care of their close relatives in urgent cases. Under certain conditions, they may even be allowed to take up to 6 months of unpaid sick leave. For example, if the person they take care lives in the same household.

Note that this only applies if they work in a company with more than 15 employees. They will not receive salary during this time. But they may be able to apply for financial aids from the care insurance.

If you need to take time for family care, you will need to inform your company at least 10 working days beforehand. You can use this time to take care of your family and your employer cannot fire you during this period.

I think this law is very good especially for us expats in Germany. For most of us, our close relatives like our parents are still in our home country. We do not have the chance to see them very often. And if something happens to them, it is good to know that we have the option to take some unpaid sick leave to take care of them or deal with any urgent situations.

This actually happened to my friend. She is from Hong Kong but she works in Germany just like me. Her mom was diagnosed with cancer in Hong Kong and the doctor expected that she could only have a few months more. In the end, my friend took a few months of unpaid sick leave to accompany her mom to treatments and spend time with her mom in her last months.

Read also: Unemployment Benefit in Germany – Application Guide for Expats

Sick leave for child care in Germany

I think Germany is a very family-friendly country. For year 2024 and 2025, in case your kid is sick, each parent can take up to 15 working days of sick leave for each child under 12 years old (with a maximum of 35 working days in a year).

This is very helpful for expat parents like me as we do not have family nearby to support us in case our kid is sick. When a kid is sick, he may not be allowed to go to kindergarten or school. It means that someone will need to stay home and take care of the sick kid.

It is a very difficult situation especially for families where both parents are working. With the help of the sick leave for child care, at least one parent can stay at home to take care of the kid until he is good again.

Note also that single parents can take up to 30 working days as sick leave for child care in Germany, with a maximum of 70 days per year.

Pin it for later:

pinterest image edited_sick leave in Germany_my life in germany_hkwomanabroad-min


Please be aware that this article is intended to provide you a brief overview of sick leave in Germany. The information and tips in this article are based on personal experiences and thorough research.

This article does not represent professional advice. This blog is not qualified to give you any legal advice according to German law and we do not accept any form of liability resulting from reading this article. Our blog makes no guarantee as to the accuracy or timeliness of the information in this article.

If you need individual advice, please talk to your employer or consult with a lawyer

Do you know anyone taking long term sick leave in Germany? Leave a comment below and share your experience!

About the author

Originally from Hong Kong, Sindy spent 13 years in Germany before moving to the US. Her blog is your ultimate resource for navigating Germany, offering pro tips on bureaucracy, job hunting, education, culture, family life, and more.

With a "been there, done that" attitude, Sindy, a certified public accountant, draws on her extensive finance and accounting background to provide professional insights with a friendly touch.

Having navigated German life with her German husband and raising two kids there, Sindy brings a personal touch to her advice. Let this blog help fellow expats like you navigate the ins and outs of life in Germany!

More info about the author

Moving to Germany or new in Germany? Check out our Resources Page for all the help you need!

If you found this article helpful, consider supporting this website by buying me a coffee. Every small donation helps to keep this blog alive. You can also ask me any questions here.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Buy me a coffee




58 Replies to “Sick Leave In Germany – Everything you need to know”

  1. Hi i am not working these days and without taking any benefit and i am sick what i have to do for health insurance can help me?

    1. If you are employed, you are entitled to paid sick leave when you have a paper from your doctor. If you need to take sick leave for longer, you can contact your health insurance to get the allowance.

      1. Hi, thanks for the insights!
        I am a bit at loss on how to initiate the process to take sick leave due to mental illness.
        Should one ask to be signed off for the initial 6 weeks by a GP or by a therapist? can the sign off be already for longer than 6 weeks? at which point does the insurance need to be involved?

        1. Vera,

          You can go to either a general doctor or a specialist. Both of them will be able to give you a sick note.
          As to how long the sick leave will be, it depends on the diagnosis from the doctors. It can usually range from a few weeks, to a much longer time if the mental illness is serious.
          You will get three sick notes: One for your employer, one for your insurance, and one for your record.
          Just give the sick notes to your employer and your insurance to notify them of your sick leave.

          Hope it helps,

  2. Great article. I was working for 3 years in Berlin and then I had a crisis and have been on long-term sickness for 58 weeks currently. One week into the sickness leave, I was made redundant with a group of staff (so not sick related).

    I’m soon to come off sickness leave, will I be able to claim unemployment after that, because I now have not worked for 12 months of the last two years? I’m quite lost on this.

    1. Thanks for reading!
      Normally, one of the requirements to get unemployment benefit is to have paid at least 12 months of unemployment insurance in the last 30 months. However, an exception to this requirement is that if you are unable to work due to sickness. So, the best would be to check with the Bundesagentur fuer Arbeit on your specific situation. Hope it helps!

  3. Nice writing. Thanks.
    Is it ok to change jobs when you are being treated about some sick? (Meaning: you have been on sick-leave for it in the past).

  4. Excellent article. Do you know what happens when you get sick in the first 4 weeks of employment? Your employer doesn’t cover those days, but does your health insurance cover it? Thanks

    1. Thanks for your comment! As far as I know, you have to be employed for at least 4 weeks in order to claim the sick leave benefit. If you want to be very sure, you should check with your HR and your health insurance. Hope it helps!

    2. Yes, your health insurance pays you (of course not 100%). But to get to the payment you must submit the sick leave in time, that is with in 7 days, beginning from the date your sick leave starts.

  5. Hi, I am struggling to obtain this answer.
    Ignoring sick pay.
    How much time can someone take off being sick and there job to remain open for their return in Germany.

    1. Hi Raj, an employee can be fired due to sickness under certain circumstances. For example, when an employee takes sick leave for more than 6 weeks and it is unlikely for the situation to improve in the future so that the employee can still continue his duties in the work contract. It may be difficult for the employer to prove that in court, but it is possible. For more details, you can check here.

  6. I have been sick from work in Germany and am now seeking surgery in the UK for the same sickness. Will I still be able to get my sick pay from my work in Germany?

    1. Meg, thanks for your comment! If you are getting sick pay from your health insurance company, going abroad during your sick period may affect your sick pay allowance. If you are going to a country outside EU, the decision if you can still get paid depends on the individual situation. For example, the health insurance company will assess if you will heal faster when you stay in Germany versus going abroad. I recommend you to check with your health insurance as soon as possible (some weeks before your trip). This is to make sure that they approve your trip before you go. It is the best if you can show them a proof written by a doctor here, explaining why going abroad will not affect your sickness (or better for your recovery). You can find more information in German here. Hope it helps!

  7. Lets say your employer gives you the one month notice to terminate your contract (under 10 employees) and gives you garden leave. In the recent past you have been sick for a week or two at a time due to work related stress. If you get sick again due to the stress of loosing your job during garden leave, can you get a sick note from doctor and then once the one month notice is over and you are now unemployed, but still sick, will it automatically go into the krankengeld? Or do you have to be on sick leave before they give you notice to continue the sick leave after they terminate you?

    1. It depends on the reason why the employer terminated your contract. Normally, if the contract is terminated, you will have let say 1 month of notice period. If you are sick again during this one month, your employer still have to pay you sick pay, but only until the end of this one month and not longer.

      However, if the reason of termination is because you were always sick in the past, and no future improvement can be seen, then let say you have this one month notice period again, if you are sick during this one month, your employer will still have to pay you sick pay (for a max of 6 weeks), even if this 6 weeks will be over your termination date. You can check this website for more information. Hope it helps!

    1. Even if you are in a fixed term contract, if you are sick, your employer needs to pay you for the first 6 week. But if the 6 weeks is over the end date of your work contract, you can only get paid until the last day on your work contract.

  8. hallo i am new here in Germany and i am foreigner and also been working only for 5 months. unfortunately i had recently work related injury that needed a surgery. so my insurance contacted be through a letter saying they will assist me with some money. i was 6 week out of work and company had paid me full. but now the insurance mentioned in the letter that they will give only 25 percent. you have mentioned of 70 percent. what should i do? should i have a right to complain?

    1. Thanks for your comment. Do you have public or private health insurance? 70% is the Krankengeld amount from public health insurance. If you have private health insurance, the amount will depend on your contract.

      1. I don’t know if KKH insurance is public or private insurance. I have a contract for two year.

  9. Hello, How much time do I have to bring the Sick note? I didn’t know that I need one. Now I got paid and I realised on my payslip I didn’t got payed for these 4 days.

    1. Normally, you have to hand in your sick note at the latest on the forth day of your sick leave. If you have not done so, your employer can stop paying your wage. However, if you can provide your proof later, your employer should retrospectively pay back your wage. I suggest to first talk with your employer on this to see if you can solve the issue. For more details about this topic, you can check this website.Hope it helps!

  10. I will be off work for two weeks here in Germany, back pain. Doctor’s sick note, am I allowed out for a meal and a beer?

  11. Fantastic article,

    I am just back at work after having been off long term sickness due to a knee operation (almost 1yr) January to January. During that time I never had any holidays as I was signed off sick. My question is what am I entitled to now that I’m back working with regards to my holiday entitlement? Can I ask for my unused holidays as payment or will I have them still to take?

    1. Thank you for reading!
      As far as I understand, if you are not on sick leave any more now, you are still entitled to the holiday last year.
      However, you need to claim your holiday entitlements latest 15 months after the end of the holiday year.
      You can check this article for more details.
      Hope it helps!

  12. Hi,
    I need to travel to India because of surgery for myself and I need to stay there for at least 4 months, may I know how could I apply for sick leave while I take surgery in India?

    Thank you for suggestions 🙂

    Kindest Regards

    1. Madhu,

      Thanks for your comment!

      If you are going to India (outside EU), the decision if you can still get sick pay allowance depends on your individual situation.
      For example, your health insurance company will assess if you will heal faster when you stay in Germany versus going to India.

      I recommend you to check with your health insurance as soon as possible (some weeks before your trip).
      This is to make sure that they approve your trip before you go.
      The best is to show them a proof written by a doctor in Germany, explaining why going to India will be better for your recovery.

      You can find more information in German here.

      Hope it helps!

  13. Good day, I have been working for 20 months in Germany. I have been booked off by the doctor, and soon this will exceed 6 weeks.
    I understand that I will then be paid by the public health insurer (Bahmer)
    What happens if my employer start to look for reasons and fires me. (i.e they manufacture complaints against me to terminate employment)
    Will the krankenkasse keep paying me every month whilst still booked off, or will they say I am not employed any more, so they don’t pay anymore either.

    1. As far as I understand, you should still get paid by your public health insurance. Note that even though it is possible for your employer to fire you during your sick period, it is not easy and they can only do so when some specific criteria are met. If you are really fired during your sick time and you are not sure if your employer is allowed to do so, you should not accept it immediately. Instead, you should consult with a lawyer to check if your employer is allowed to fire you.

  14. I am Blue Card visa holder and about to go on long term sick leave. How does sick leave influence my application for residency?

    1. From my understanding, sick leave should not affect your application for residency. Because when you are on sick leave, you are still employed. However, I am not a lawyer. If you need legal advice, please ask a lawyer directly. Here is an example from someone who asked a lawyer a similar question and an answer from that lawyer. Hope it helps you!

    2. Hi Mel … i am in the same boat … can you share what you found out around legal consequences of taking sick leave on residency application

    3. Hi Mel … i am in the same boat regarding to having Blue card and aspiring to get residency in 21 months … can you also share what you found out around legal consequences of taking sick leave on residency application .

  15. Hi Great content here,
    I have problem with “Hürenaugen” on my feet. Doctor told me that is fine and didnt issue me an sick note. His diagnosis was that I am capable to work. I stand for 8-10 hrs at work and now again, I am having pain in my knees and ankles due to improper walking. Doctor still claims that I am fit to work, but the pain is causing even more damage. What to do??
    Thank you for help.

  16. With this kind of interpretation you make it sound like everybody should take advantage of this.

    I know an american colleague of mine who’s on sick leave for 5 months or more..’ due to “depression”.

    Just because in the US you have a shitty health system, doesn’t mean you should go to Germany and selfishly benefit, while other colleagues struggle with workload.

    1. Thanks for your comment.

      A good health system does not mean that one should abuse it.
      If everyone abuses it, the system will not work any more.
      The system works so well in Germany because people are disciplined.

      On the other hand, it is good to live in a country which has a good health system.
      One has less financial worry when he becomes sick.

      Thanks a lot for your opinion!

  17. Hi, thanks for all the information! I’m currently unemployed and register at Job center. Do you know if I need to send a copy of the sick note to them? since they are consider as my employer. Thanks again.

  18. Hey, great article! I just wanted to quickly correct you on one thing. It’s not true that a digital sick note will be send to the employer automatically from July 2022. It is correct that it will be sent to the insurance company though. But until the end of the year an employee still needs to hand in the sick note by themselves. 🙂

  19. Great article. I have currently been employed for 4 years here in Germany and recently one of my parents back in the states has grown ill. I have flown back to the states twice within the last 2 months. My question is, can I apply for paid or unpaid leave or be written out by a doctor for the days that I will have to travel back to the states ? I’m stressed and having a hard time figuring out what I should do.

    1. I am sorry to hear that. My friend had a similar situation. Her mother got cancer when she was working permanently in Germany. She talked to HR and arranged a 2-month unpaid leave so that she could stay with her mother during that time. Maybe you could talk with your boss/ HR to find a way? Hope it helps, Sindy

  20. Hi, I am a student and i work only on weekends. I injured my wrist on Saturday and informed my employer about my sickness and I booked appointment to the doctor but I got appointment only on Monday (after 2days of sickess). So, my question is will I get my sick note of my past 2days(Saturday and sunday) from doctor on Monday. What happens if doctor refuse to give me sick leave of my past days. In that case what should I do?

  21. Hello,

    thanks for the article. It is very helpful.
    I work in Germany since 2018 and I took vacation to fly back to my home country, Portugal.
    Unfortunately, after a couple of days I got sick and I wanted to convert some days from holiday to sick leave.
    I got visited by a doctor who issued a sick note for me (privately, I had to pay for it because I am not resident in Portugal anymore).

    Is that enough, right?
    Shall I expect now a visit from a doctor commisioned by my German Employeer or by my publich health insurance company?

    The sick note is for 10 days, which sounds a bit too much for me but the doctor said better to not understimate this kind of sickness.
    Now, what if I feel better already in 5 days?
    Can I get only 5 days of sick leave instead of 10?
    Am I obliged to stay at home all the time for the whole 10 days even if I start feeling much better sooner than that?


    1. Thanks for your comment!
      The sick note issued by your foreign doctor should normally work, as long as the sick note contains all the necessary details.
      For example, it needs to not only state that you are sick, but you are unable to work. See more details here.
      In Germany, if the sick note indicates 10 days and you want to go back to work earlier, you will have to change the sick note.

      Disclaimer: Please note that I am not a professional to answer your question. What I wrote above is only based on my experience. If you want to be sure, please contact your insurance company and your employer. They can advise you based on your specific situation.

  22. Hi! I have a contract as a delivery that states that I should work between 12H (minimum) up to 30 H, I just got a sick note for the week… how much are they going to pay me? For 12 hours or the 30 I was schedule to work?

    1. Axel, Thanks for your comment. As far as I know, in case of job based on hourly wage, the insurance will pay the number of hours lost due to the sickness.
      I suggest you to contact your HR department for more details. Hope it helps. Sindy

  23. Hi Sindy,

    Thank you very much for the great article! It was incredible helpful.

    I’m currently going through a difficult situation at work. While I genuinely enjoy my job, the work environment has become increasingly stressful due to a problematic boss. Unfortunately, they never seem satisfied with my work, fail to listen to my concerns, and are often absent when I need support. Additionally, I have experienced instances of racism in the workplace, and the workload has become overwhelming.

    When I expressed my dissatisfaction, instead of support, I received advice on how to leave the company. I’ve scheduled an appointment with my doctor. If he does not give me time off, what would you recommend I do?

    I would greatly appreciate any advice you could offer on how to navigate this situation.

    Thank you in advance!

    1. Rose,

      Thanks for your comment.

      Depending on how long you have been with the company, it can be much easier for them if you quit by yourself, then if they have to fire you.
      There is a lot of labor protection in Germany which makes firing based on work performance very problematic. Besides, they do not need to pay you severance if you quit by yourself.

      As to what you should do, it depends on what you want.
      Staying in a job with a bad boss is very bad for your mental health.
      You can continue to stay in this situation if this is tolerable.
      If not, you should look for an alternative, meaning that you find a job outside, or change a job internally.

      Depending on your company, sometimes you may be able to raise your concern with the HR department or other management to see if the situation can improve or if you can change to a different role.
      If everything else fails and you can afford to look for another job outside, I would go for it for the sake of your mental health.

      Hope it helps and all the best.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *