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Global Expatriate Service: Legal Advice

In light of increasing globalisation, more and more companies are temporarily sending employees abroad to complete projects or assignments. The legal framework for such postings is not always easy for employers and employees to understand.

As employers, companies are obliged to comply with the national laws and provisions of the host countries. Cross-border postings should therefore be planned in good time and structured in a way that takes the local legal situation into account - this is where the lawyers of our Global Expatriate Services team are here to help.

We provide our clients with legally secure and stress-free support through the planning, preparation and fruition phases of any posting abroad. This is done in accordance with the individual starting position. Our involvement provides significant relief for both the expatriates and HR departments, allowing them to more efficiently concentrate on their core business.

The WTS Global Expatriate Service provides comprehensive support with all employment, residency, social insurance and tax-related issues that arise from a secondment from a single source. Our special strength lies in this holistic and integrative consulting approach.

Our WTS legal experts support companies, their seconded employees and private individuals with the issues below.

Tax consulting services are provided by WTS Steuerberatungsgesellschaft.

One of the biggest challenges when sending employees abroad is structuring the contracts. This especially applies to secondment contracts, suspension agreements or local employment contracts. Our lawyers analyse and review existing contracts from an employment law perspective and provide support in drafting new contracts or improving existing ones.

It is especially important for employees that their social security insurance is guaranteed during the secondment. To ensure this, a prior assessment of the individual case must be made. An inadequate or inaccurate assessment could result in social disadvantages for employees and significant additional payment obligations at home or abroad for the employer.

Our WTS legal experts review the social security status of the respective employees and analyse the social security implications of their postings abroad. If an employee wishes to retain his or her domestic social security rights, we provide support in ensuring this and finding the best solution (e.g. by applying for secondment certificates and exception agreements, confirmation of inpatriate/expatriate status or applying for alternative insurance in the statutory social security scheme).

We can also assist with any questions relating to an entitlement to child support or parental benefit as provided for under social security law during the secondment. Where possible and if desired, we can also prepare refund requests for contributions made to the German statutory social security scheme by employees posted to Germany.

Our WTS experts advise on the compliance regulations that must be adhered to during cross-border assignments (e.g. visa applications, residency and work permits).

We will gladly support personnel departments in preparing visa applications and company correspondence regarding work and residency permits, including communication with the authorities.

The provisions of the employment contracts, secondment contracts and the various laws and regulations of the host countries should be reflected in the compliance rules of company. Dealing with gifts for hosts is just one example that involves both cultural and (fiscal) legal aspects.

Our WTS legal experts analyse existing agreements and structures and assess the situation in the respective countries to help draft the necessary compliance regulations.

Main Contact
Frank Dissen
Lawyer, Certified Tax Consultant
> View Profile
"Global Expatriate Service - Legal Advice" is a service of WTS Legal Rechtsanwaltsgesellschaft mbH.
WTS Global Mobility Newsletter edition #1/2019
Brief overview of recent or expected changes in the area of Global Mobility in 9 selected countries
View publication

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