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  Bundesagentur fur Arbeit


Description sub-topic

Recent and current changes in laws relating to the status/organisation/function of the PES

What is changing, what has changed (legal)?

The reform of the former “Federal Employment Administration” (Bundesanstalt für Arbeit) under the Third Act for Modern Services in the Labour Market (known as “Hartz III”) of 1 January 2004 initiated a whole gamut of changes in the Agency’s organisation and operations.

  • Change of name to the “Federal Employment Agency” (Bundesagentur für Arbeit)
  • With the introduction of Book Two of the Social Code (“SGB II”), effective 1
    January 2005 the BA also became an agency responsible for providing Basic
    Benefits for Job Seekers, alongside local governments.

The new Basic Benefits for Job Seekers, introduced under Book II of the Social Code on 1 January 2005, represent the most extensive social-law and labour-market reform in the history of the Federal Republic. The objectives are:

  • Book II eliminates the coexistence of two government and tax-financed welfare
    systems (Unemployment Relief and Social Welfare)
  • It provides for benefits to be dispensed from a single source. Consequently,
    the idea is to create a single point of contact for employable persons in
    need, so as to implement a holistic support approach (establishment of an
    integrated system that combines counselling, assistance and material
  • The introduction of Basic Benefits for the employable needy (Book II of the
    Social Code), with an emphasis on activation, is intended to strengthen
    beneficiaries’ sense of personal responsibility.

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