Seasonal workers have rights to family support

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12 Jun, 2012 Updated Tue 12 Jun 2012 14:15 CEST
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Foreign seasonal workers have the right to child support money paid by the German government while they are in the country, the European Court of Human Rights decided on Tuesday.

Two Polish workers challenged the German refusal to pay them the money while they were working in the country and paying German taxes. Many workers come to Germany from Poland on a seasonal basis, especially to harvest asparagus or fruit.

One of the plaintiffs was in Germany for seasonal work, while the other had been sent to Germany by his employer – and both were paying full rates of income tax to the German authorities.

But when they claimed child support payments for the period they were in Germany, the authorities refused, saying they were not entitled, a report in Die Welt said on Tuesday.

After a long legal battle, the men took their case to the European Court, which ruled on Tuesday that seasonal workers should be paid the same benefits while working abroad as they would be entitled to at home.

The German government would be throwing away a chance to “improve the living standards and working conditions of seasonal workers” by insisting that Polish law should apply to Poles in Germany.

The Local/hc

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2012/06/12 14:15

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