Obligation to Make a Home Office Offer

November 23rd, 2021 | by

In the updated Infection Protection Act, employers are once again under a so-called homeoffice offer obligation. This will be in effect for a limited period until March 19, 2022, and applies to all staff who perform office work. The head of the higher education institutions shall, per the statutory requirements, offer employees who carry out office work or comparable activities the opportunity to carry out these activities at home, provided that there are no compelling operational reasons opposing this.

The legislator has made it clear that for office work or similar activities, employers are only exempt from offering their employees the opportunity to work from home in particularly justified exceptional cases. Activity-based hybrid forms of work may also be considered. Employees must accept such an activity-based home office offer if there is no reason to oppose this. Reasons for declining this offer could, for example, be a lack of space in their home or if they are unable to work undisturbed.

This latest home office offer obligation aims to reduce contacts at the workplace again as much as possible. If employees have to continue to work on site, the workplaces freed up by granting home office to others should therefore be used as much as possible to further the objective of contact reduction. Sharing an office at the same time should be avoided at all costs.

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