Minijobs in Germany

In Germany a special way to earn money is given. In those jobs people have the possibility to earn up to 400€ non-accessible and without paying taxes. Many people use this option to do a secondary job. Only the employer has to pay a lump sum 30% (health insurance 13%, pension fund 15%, wage tax 2% as of 1st July 2006). It is also possible to carry out a Minijob within 4 weeks for example during seasonal transactions such as Christmas.

In Germany a lot of young people and especially students are doing Minijobs. The working hours are flexible so that they are able to combine the job with their studies. On the other side Minijobs help people to get off of unemployment for a long time. Additionally people who receive financial support by the German state can do Minijobs without losing this support as long as they do not work more than 15 hours per week.

The negative aspect of Minijobs is that most of the people do not have any chances to get a full-time job. That means that they may do not evolve themselves and their level of skills and responsibilities will stay the same. Another problem is that many Minijobber do not know about their rights, although they have the same rights as a full-time employee. Because of their less knowledge they do not sue for their right. The „Wirtschafts- und Sozialwissenschaftliche Institut (WSI) der gewerkschaftsnahen Hans-Böckler-Stiftung“ said that Minijobs do not contribute to a development. Many people who receive financial support by the German state do not want to get a full-time job because they earn more if they receive Hartz IV (sepcial type of financial support) and 400€ and have to work less hours.


Because of the high number of Minijobs experts except that the number of unemployed people in Germany will decrease under a number of 3 million. Since the end of September 2010 more than 7.3 million (diagramm) people had a Minijob which is almost 1.3 million more than in 2003. Disclosure to the “Bundesagentur für Arbeit” each fourth employment relationship is on the basis of a Minijob. Around 5 million people work in Minijobs. Most of them work in restaurants, hotels, retail and wholesale trade and in the public health sector. Almost every second work place in the gastronomy is a Minijob.



3 thoughts on “Minijobs in Germany

  1. Minijobs are highly discussed in Germany. The point is that the majority of people look for Minijobs in order to be able to cover some costs such as paying the apartment and not to gain some extra money. Additionally, this people mostly work more as described in the contract but do not gain more money. People fear to lose their Minijob as they are highly dependent on this money, so even they know their rights, they do not want to make use of them as the fear to lose and the dependency is to strong. Apart from this, these people are not included in the statistics of unemployment but people cannot live from one Minijob and therefore the majority has more than one Minijob and at the end, they still gain less than people having Hartz 4. A family with for example 5 children receives around 2500 Euros per months plus a nice apartment or house to live and extra support for the children when they for example join a school trip and access to cheap food (1 Euro for a bunch of vegetables, fruits, bread etc.) and clothes while working people have less income and do not gain sufficient support from the government and pay their tax with which for example the Hartz 4 is also paid. Thus, there are a lot of people who could work but who do not work because they would not gain as much money as they do from Hartz 4 when working.

  2. As you said in you article a big disadvantage is that people who have minijobs often aren´t looking for a fulltime-job. It´s a good way for for example students to earn extra money, but I don´t think it´s an alternative for a full-time job. I also think that the german government looses a lot of money because of the mini-jobs. For example in the gastronomy: The employer allows an employee to work officially only 10 hours a week and inofficially the employee works for example 20 hours. Every week the employee gets the money from the 10 overtime in cash. So the employee earns a lot of extra money and nobody knows.


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