Youth Labour Protection Act: Analysis & practical solutions with ZEP

Why is the Youth Labour Protection Act (JArgSchG) important for the training of underage young people? Discover practical solutions on how you can support your trainees with ZEP & comply with the legal regulations.
Youth Labour Protection Act: Analysis & practical solutions with ZEP

The Youth Labour Protection Act (JArbSchG) is an indispensable legal instrument that forms the basis for the protection and promotion of underage trainees in Germany. In this blog post, we will delve into the structure of the legal texts, focussing in particular on the key paragraphs that deal with working hours, break regulations and medical supervision. In this context, we would like to show you practical solutions for your company to effectively implement the legal regulations with our software for project time recording.

Youth Labour Protection Act in detail

The protection of young people in the world of work is of fundamental importance, with the Youth Labour Protection Act providing the legal framework for underage trainees in particular. The regulations aim not only to ensure a good work-life balance, but also to protect the physical and mental health of young people. In this context, consistent compliance with the legal requirements plays a decisive role in ensuring comprehensive training and a responsible transition to working life. In the following, we would like to take a closer look at the most important aspects of the Youth Employment Protection Act (JArbSchuG).

§ 8 - Working time regulations

The § 8 of the JArbSchG sets out clear guidelines on working hours for underage trainees. According to the paragraph, young people may not work more than eight hours per day and 40 hours per week. This section aims to ensure a good work-life balance and protect the physical health of young people. It is crucial that you as an employer carefully adhere to these regulations in your day-to-day business to ensure the well-balanced integration of training and working hours.

§§ 9 and 10 - Leave of absence for vocational school lessons & examinations

Paragraphs 9 and 10 relate to the Exemption for young people to attend vocational school and the Participation in examinations. Of particular importance here is the crediting of vocational school periods. These regulations emphasise the importance of school-based training as an integral part of young people's professional development. Careful coordination between the training company and school education is essential to ensure comprehensive training. As an employer, you must give trainees time off for vocational school lessons. If school starts at 9 a.m., young people are not allowed to work in the company beforehand, nor on school days with more than 5 hours of lessons. This also applies to vocational school weeks with scheduled block lessons of at least 25 hours over 5 days.

§ 11 - Break regulations for young people

Another key aspect of the Youth Labour Protection Act can be found in § 11, which regulates the breaks for young people defined. The length of the break depends on the working hours. This is because young people are not allowed to work for more than 4.5 hours at a time without taking a break. This means that if you work for more than 4.5 hours, a break of 30 minutes must be granted. If you work for more than six hours, you must guarantee a break of 60 minutes! Only breaks of at least 15 minutes, which should be taken at the earliest one hour after the start and at the latest one hour before the end of working hours, count as rest breaks. Ideally, your trainees should take their breaks outside the business premises. If this is not possible, you as the employer must ensure that work can be stopped inside your business premises during the break to ensure that the young people have the necessary rest.

§§ Sections 32 and 33 - Initial and follow-up examinations

Sections 32 and 33 regulate the initial and follow-up examinations for underage trainees. According to § 32 JArbSchG persons who are under the age of majority at the start of their training must undergo an initial medical examination. This examination should take place within the last 14 months before starting work in order to give young people the opportunity to make a career choice that is appropriate to their health. As an employer, you may only employ underage young people if they have a medical certificate issued by a doctor. The first follow-up examination in accordance with § 33 JArbSchG is required 10 to 12 months after the start of employment if the trainee is not yet of legal age. As an employer, you must ensure that you remind your trainees of the follow-up examination in good time and obtain the relevant certificate.

§§ Sections 58 and 59 - Provisions on fines

The Youth Labour Protection Act provides for fines to ensure compliance with the regulations. According to § 58 JArbSchG it is an offence to employ minors without a medical certificate or to violate other regulations. If you violate these regulations, this can be penalised with fines of up to 30,000 euros! In addition § Section 59 JArbSchG Regulatory offences with regard to the request to submit medical certificates and exemption for medical examinations, for which fines of up to 5,000 euros can be imposed.

So let's summarise: The Youth Labour Protection Act provides you as an employer with clear regulations for the working conditions of underage trainees. The regulations range from restrictions on working hours and time off for vocational school lessons and examinations to break regulations and health checks. Compliance with these regulations is not only legally binding for you, but also crucial for the well-being and development of underage apprentices.

Comply with youth labour protection with ZEP - working hours, breaks & health

Now that we have looked at the key aspects of the Youth Employment Protection Act, let's take a look at practical solutions for implementing these regulations. This is where our ZEP project time tracking software comes into play. If you already work with ZEP, you know the benefits that our tool offers you in the hectic day-to-day running of your business. But did you know that you are also on the safe side when it comes to youth labour protection?

Working time management

ZEP offers you comprehensive support for various working time requirements in your company, while ensuring compliance with legal regulations such as the Youth Labour Protection Act. As § 8 JArbSchG stipulates that minors may not work more than eight hours a day or more than 40 hours a week, our software allows you to define regular working hours per day or per month. You can define individual working days and working hours for each employee. ZEP allows you to dynamically calculate the standard working time per working day based on the set parameters. The working time models can be easily customised by entering the hours per day or the monthly working hours.

Mapping vocational school days

With absence management in ZEP, you fulfil all legal requirements associated with § 9 JArbSchG. In order to adequately map your trainees' vocational school days in ZEP, it is possible to create a specific reason for absence. This reason for absence enables differentiated recording and documentation of your trainees' vocational school days. To do this, it is advisable to create a new reason for absence in the "Paid absence" category, for example with the designation "BS - Vocational school". Creating this specific reason for absence allows you to map the vocational school days in different ways. The days can be entered either as a full day, half a day or for a specific time slot (e.g. for block lessons). This flexibility enables your trainees to enter and document their vocational school days easily and efficiently in ZEP. According to §9 JArbSchG, vocational school days and weeks are counted towards the working hours of young people. The absenteeism regulation in ZEP takes this into account by recording lesson times including breaks and integrating them into the total working time. This ensures that you comply with legally prescribed rest periods and limits.

Break regulations also apply to trainees

In ZEP, you have the option of defining break regulations in accordance with the JArbSchG to ensure compliance with the legal requirements for underage trainees. This function allows you to define prescribed minimum rest periods and maximum working hours per day. One advantage is that the break regulation monitors whether your trainees are complying with the specified rest periods, minimum breaks and core working hours. If this is not the case, corresponding warnings can be activated in ZEP. This is because the break regulations for young people differ from the regulations for permanent employees. According to § 11 JArbSchG, minors may not work for more than 4.5 hours at a time without a break. A break of 30 minutes must be guaranteed by then at the latest. If they work for more than 4.5 hours and up to six hours, your trainees need a 60-minute break by law. With the control function in ZEP, you as an employer not only ensure compliance with the statutory minimum rest periods, but also the time structure of these breaks. In short, you ensure that your underage trainees can recover appropriately. This means that by carefully structuring and monitoring the rest periods with the ZEP regulation, you are making a significant contribution to fulfilling the protective regulations for young people at work in accordance with Section 11 JArbSchG and ensuring a safe workplace.

ZEP, remember

With the Tickets, tasks & to dos add-on module you have the option of creating specific tasks or events in the form of tickets with a due date. It is important to note that the due date can be set to the exact day, but not the exact time. As an employer, for example, you can create a ticket for the follow-up examination in accordance with Section 33 JArbSchG. By setting the due date within the prescribed period of 10 to 12 months after the start of training, you ensure that your underage trainee receives the reminder to attend the medical check-up in good time. As in any case, the same applies here: Trust is good, control is better. Therefore: To be on the safe side, put a reminder in your ZEP calendar. That way, nothing can go wrong!

Legally compliant support for a safe training environment

As you can see, the Youth Labour Protection Act plays a central role in safeguarding the rights and health of underage trainees. Compliance with the legal regulations, particularly with regard to working hours, vocational school lessons, break regulations and health checks, is not only mandatory, but also fundamental for comprehensive training and the healthy development of young people.

Our software for project time recording offers tried-and-tested solutions to support you in implementing and complying with these legal provisions. Working time management enables you to effectively implement the statutory working time restrictions in accordance with § 8 JArbSchG. The flexible mapping of vocational school days and the integration of break regulations ensure full compliance with legal requirements. This means that you are not only legally on the safe side, but also actively promote the structuring of all training-related processes. Do you have questions about functionality, break regulations or setting individual core working hours? Our support team will be happy to assist you!

Tanja Hartmann CEP

Tanja Hartmann

Content Marketing Manager at provantis IT Solutions

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