The spread of the novel coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) in Germany is also causing uncertainty among Leipzig University’s staff. Here we provide information about the most important current issues concerning the virus and its impact on University operations. Members of the crisis management team set up under the University’s pandemic plan are liaising on a daily basis.

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Photo: Leipzig University

Current Information for Staff

At the moment, new rules are constantly coming into force and older information is no longer valid. Below you will find the latest information divided by topic as well as all detailed news since we began providing coronavirus updates for staff.
Translations last updated: 18 June 2021

Please note that the German version of this page may be more up to date. Some information is not available in English.

Under new coronavirus rules from 14 July 2021 which now apply in Saxony, members of staff who have been absent for five days or longer have to take a test on their return to the workplace. Please refer to staff email 8/21 for further information (scroll down for the English version of the email).

FORM FOR DOCUMENTING COMPULSORY STAFF TESTS
PDF 238 KB

According to the Saxon Regulation for Protection Against Coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 and COVID-19 (SächsCoronaSchVO), employers are obliged to offer weekly self-testing to employees working on site. The Free State of Saxony supplied the University with the necessary rapid test kits at the end of March. The Office for Environmental Protection and Occupational Safety distributed these to all faculties, Central Institutions and the central administration, so that rapid test kits are available to all employees.

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Mobile working and working from home

Since 1 November 2020, Leipzig University employees have had the opportunity to conclude an individual agreement on mobile working (allowing them to work from home) on the basis of an agreement called the Dienstvereinbarung Mobile Arbeit. Due to the pandemic, the provisions in the latter agreement concerning “how much” mobile working employees are entitled to request, have been suspended until 30 September 2021. These pandemic-related arrangements mean that employees can at present request to work elsewhere (i.e. from home) for up to a maximum of 100 per cent of their contractually agreed working hours.

How many hours an employee may work elsewhere, the period of their individual agreement, and further specifications have to be agreed between the employee and their superior. If a request for mobile working is rejected, either in full or in part, by the superior, then the request has to be officially forwarded to the Department of Human Resources. In these cases, the Head of the Department will decide on whether to approve the request, but not before consulting the Staff Council.

Further information and a list of frequently asked questions are available on the intranet.

Correction slips for staff on flexitime

Flexitime staff can now submit correction slips electronically. Until now, it was necessary to use yellow paper slips, which were only processed in paper form.  

More information, the new form and an overview of the process are available on the intranet.
Learn more

Applying for annual leave / leave of absence

Staff can now apply for annual leave and other forms of leave electronically. Please note that leave should be requested and approved either in paper form (as before) or digitally, but not both: paper leave requests submitted in addition to the digital form will not be processed. The PDF form cannot yet be digitally signed.

  • The confirmed leave request can be sent by email to personaldezernat(at)zv.uni-leipzig.de.
  • The relevant PDF form (Urlaubsantrag/Antrag auf Freistellung) is available for download on the intranet.

Rules on working hours

The following applies in the period from 1 November 2020 to 30 September 2021:

Employees with fixed working hours and on flexitime:
Staff may also work until 1pm on Saturdays, subject to approval by their superior (but not on public holidays).
Employees on flexitime:

  1. Time off in lieu for more than two days per month is possible.
  2. Up to 80 negative hours at the end of the month are possible (full-time employees). The same principle applies pro rata for part-time employees.
  3. The core and minimum working hours on site remain open currently suspended.

Further regulations, especially regarding software booking for mobile work and the handling of negative hours at the end of the year, are contained in the staff email sent by the Department of Human Resources to all flexitime employees on 19 October 2020.

Correction Slips for Staff on Flexitime

Flexitime staff can now submit correction slips electronically. Until now, it was necessary to use yellow paper slips, which were only processed in paper form. 

More information, the new form and an overview of the process are available on the intranet.

Applying for annual leave / leave of absence

Staff can now apply for annual leave and other forms of leave electronically. Please note that leave should be requested and approved either in paper form (as before) or digitally, but not both: paper leave requests submitted in addition to the digital form will not be processed. The PDF form cannot yet be digitally signed. 

Rules on working hours

The following applies in the period from 1 November 2020 to 30/09/2021:

Employees with fixed working hours and on flexitime:
Staff may also work until 1pm on Saturdays, subject to approval by their superior (but not on public holidays).
Employees on flexitime:

  1. Time off in lieu for more than two days per month is possible.
  2. Up to 80 negative hours at the end of the month are possible (full-time employees). The same principle applies pro rata for part-time employees.
  3. The core and minimum working hours on site remain open currently suspended.

Further regulations, especially regarding software booking for mobile work and the handling of negative hours at the end of the year, are contained in the staff email sent by the Department of Human Resources to all flexitime employees on 19 October 2020.

Hygiene and Infectious Disease Conept

The Office for Environmental Protection and Occupational Safety has developed the Hygiene and Infectious Disease Concept, which provides guidelines for dealing with the coronavirus situation at our university.
LEARN MORE

Restriction/suspension of office hours

Organisational units are entitled to restrict or completely suspend office hours at their own discretion. They are required to provide appropriate information about this.

Business Trips in Germany and Abroad

The current decline in coronavirus infection rates means an increasing number of restrictions can now also be lifted. This also affects business trips. In order to minimise the risk of new waves of infection, precautionary measures must still be observed by the University. Business trips should still be reduced to the absolute minimum. It should be checked before each business trip whether it might be possible to replace the corresponding meeting or activity with a virtual alternative.

The decision on whether a business trip is necessary, and responsibility for ordering or approving business trips, lie with the Deans or the heads of the respective institutions. Due to the foreseeable increase in the number of business trips, this will also apply again to international business trips from 1 July 2021. Furthermore, the Dean or head of the institution may only order or approve business trips subject to the following regulations:      

1. Business trips within Germany

Essential business trips within Germany are permissible. Unless the participants are fully protected against infection, it is recommended that they perform a self-test or take a rapid test at a testing centre within 24 hours prior to travel and before returning to work. 

2. International business trips

Whether a business trip abroad can be ordered/approved depends largely on whether the employee is protected against infection and on whether the destination region/country is designated as a risk area, high incidence area or area of variants of concern. The Robert Koch Institute regularly updates its list of country designations (learn more).

2.1 Possibility to order/approve business trips

(a) Not a risk area
Business trips abroad to destinations which are neither risk areas, high incidence areas nor areas of variants of concern are allowed. Unless the participants are fully protected against infection, it is recommended that they perform a self-test or take a rapid test at a testing centre within 24 hours prior to travel and before returning to work.

(b) “Basic” risk area
Business trips abroad to destinations which are risk areas, but not high incidence areas or areas of variants of concern, are only allowed if the person travelling is fully protected against infection during the business trip and will not be required to quarantine on entry or return. If an employee is required to quarantine as a result of a business trip, then they are only entitled to keep being paid during this period if the quarantine was not foreseeable prior to the start of the business trip.

(c) High incidence areas and areas of variants of concern
Business trips abroad to destinations which are high incidence areas and/or areas of variants of concern are still not allowed.

2.2 Travel to “basic” risk areas: Determining whether an employee is protected against infection  

Full protection against infection is assumed if

(a) the employee was fully vaccinated at least 15 days before the start of the business trip. This must be proven by submitting a vaccination card or certificate with the business trip request form.

(b) the employee was infected more than 6 months ago at the start and at the end of the business trip, and was vaccinated once at least 15 days prior to departure. 
This must be proven by submitting a positive PCR test, which must be dated (= time of infection), or a corresponding doctor’s certificate with the business trip request form, along with proof of a vaccination after 6 months, in the form of a vaccination certificate.

(c) the employee has recovered from coronavirus in the last 6 months, the business trip will commence no earlier than 28 days after the infection, and the trip will end less than 6 months after the start of the infection.
This must be proven by submitting a positive, dated PCR test with the business trip request form, along with a negative test result from after the end of the isolation period or other valid documentation from the health office.

 2.3 Changes to RKI designation as a risk area, high incidence area or area of variants of concern

If a business trip has been ordered or approved and the region/country is declared a risk area before the trip begins, the rules on “basic” risk areas under 2.1 (b) apply.

If the region/country is declared a high incidence area and/or an area of variants of concern, the business trip will not be permitted.

The person planning the business trip is responsible for monitoring any changes in status. This will not be pointed out separately.

If a business trip cannot be undertaken due to a change in status, then cancellation costs and/ or costs for services that could not be cancelled are reimbursable under the with the Saxon Travel Expenses Act (SächsRKG). The costs must be borne by the respective institution. If a business trip is undertaken and the region/country is declared a high incidence area and/or area of variants of concern during the business trip, the applicable quarantine rules must be complied with and the employee must inform their superior and the Department of Human Resources immediately. Unavoidable quarantine costs abroad are also reimbursable under the Saxon Travel Expenses Act and must be borne by the respective institution.

2.4 Consequences of non-compliance

If, in the case of travel abroad to “basic risk areas”, the employee fails to provide the test certificates or proof of protection against infection as required under 2.2, then ordering/approving the business trip will not be permitted. If a business trip abroad is carried out without observing the information under 2.1 to 2.3 or without the employee having been instructed to conduct the trip, the business trip will be deemed not to have been ordered or to have been carried out in deviation from the order. In this case, the employer reserves the right to take disciplinary action.  

This information is only available in German.

Granting Visiting Scholar Status

It is still possible to grant visiting scholar status at Leipzig University, subject to strict compliance with the applicable coronavirus legislation and with Leipzig University’s Hygiene and Infectious Disease Concept. The responsibility for this lies with the respective institution. Visiting scholars arriving from outside Germany are responsible for ensuring that they observe any national entry requirements. According to the Free State of Saxony’s rules on quarantine, guests must self-isolate immediately after arriving in Germany (i.e. before they can enter Leipzig University buildings). 
Since the situation is constantly changing, we kindly ask you to keep an eye on the Ministry of Health website as well as the latest rules applicable in Saxony.

FURTHER INFORMATION 

Information about visiting scholar status

Application for visiting scholar status

Guest Agreements

Stays by visiting scholars for the purpose of cooperation in research and teaching are still possible, subject to strict compliance with the applicable coronavirus legislation and with Leipzig University’s Hygiene and Infectious Disease Concept. The responsibility for this lies with the respective institution. Visiting scholars arriving from outside Germany are responsible for ensuring that they observe any national entry requirements. According to the Free State of Saxony’s rules on quarantine, guests must self-isolate immediately after arriving in Germany (i.e. before they can enter Leipzig University buildings). 
Since the situation is constantly changing, we kindly ask you to keep an eye on the Federal Ministry of Health as well as the latest rules applicable in the Free State of Saxony..

Further information 

  • In addition to digital registration (posters with QR codes) in some cases, an analogue version (registration form) must be available for each class or event. The organiser is responsible for this. The organiser is responsible for this in each case.
  • Meetings should not take place in personal office rooms if possible. It is recommended to use meeting rooms. At the very least, there should be a list of participants for each meeting, team meeting or other gathering so that contacts can be identified later on if necessary. Meetings should be as brief as possible. The contact details of persons from outside the University must be collected in accordance with the requirements of the SächsCoronaSchVO. This includes their name, telephone number or email address, postal code and the time and duration of the visit. The host is responsible for this in each case.
  • Personal visits should be avoided. Use meeting rooms if possible. It is recommended to document each personal visit independently so that contacts can be traced later if necessary. Contact time must be limited. The contact details of visitors must be collected in accordance with the requirements of the SächsCoronaSchVO. This includes their name, telephone number or email address, postal code and the time and duration of the visit.
  • The contact details of persons from external companies must be collected in accordance with the requirements of the SächsCoronaSchVO. This includes their name, telephone number or email address, postal code and the time and duration of the visit. This is the responsibility of the person who initiates and supervises the visit.
  • It is not necessary to register brief visits, such as parcel deliveries, postal collections, dropping off coursework, etc.

Contact tracing form template
PDF 9 MB

Occupational health

Normal work routines have changed, many of us are working from home, many are worried about their own health and that of their relatives, and there are new challenges in digital teaching or administration...If you would like to talk about your worries, needs and possible solutions in this difficult time, you are welcome to get in touch with our health administration expert Dr Sabine Korek. Please contact her by email or telephone to make an appointment.

Send email
+493419735941

Psychiatric outpatient clinic at the University Hospital

Telephone consultations and current information about the pandemic

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Protecting you mental health during the crisis

Read our tips on dealing with the crisis in daily life, based on seven points published by the German Depression Foundation.
LEARN MORE

Risk in Cases of Disability

Does anyone with a disability belong to a risk group?
The Robert Koch Institute has precisely defined which persons belong to the risk groups. Not everyone with a disability automatically belongs to the risk group, but many do. It is always necessary to consider what to do in each individual case, based primarily on medical advice and a doctor’s certificate. It is therefore advisable to consult your doctor or specialist.

What should I do if I belong to a risk group and have a disability?
Whoever belongs to a risk group should seek a personal discussion with their superior in order to find a solution together (individual office or re-assignment to a new role). It is advisable to involve the University’s Disability Officers in such cases.

Restriction of public access in Department 3 (Human Resources)

  • General office hours are suspended. Appointments (e.g. to sign contracts) are only be possible by prior arrangement by telephone or email. 

  • Please use the letter boxes on the 5th and 6th floor at Goethestraße 6 to submit documents. 

  • Enquiries must be kept to a minimum. Please use only telephone and email for this purpose. 

  • Please maintain the maximum possible distance when dealing with others (e.g. when signing contracts). 

  • Please use your own pens to sign contracts. 

  • Please refrain from requesting an appointment if there are any indications that you might be infected with coronavirus, or if you have been in contact with an infected person or if you suffer from another potentially contagious respiratory disease. 

  • We will start sending out more employment contracts by post in order to avoid the need for the person to be physically present to sign the contract. Given the written form requirement, additional time should be factored in to allow for postal delivery times. 

  • Since the operation of Department 3 (Human Resources) will be considerably restricted, we particularly request that applications be processed in advance and prioritised appropriately. 

  • Please check this website regularly for more information.

University buildings

University buildings will remain closed to the public until further notice, although they are still accessible to members of staff who need to perform essential tasks.

University Library

  • From 11 January 2021, the University Library will open its branches for borrowing and returning items (exception: Deutsches Literaturinstitut).
  • They will all be open from Monday to Friday, from 10am until 4pm.
  • The automatic renewal of borrowed items (except for recalls) will initially continue until the end of January.
  • Please note the separate rules on loans at the Law Library.

It will not be possible to book workstations or spend longer periods in the libraries until further notice. If the incidence rate drops below 50, Leipzig University’s crisis management team will consider reopening the libraries for studying. For more information, please refer to the University Library website.

University Staff Council (information from 26 March 2020)

The University Staff Council is not currently offering consultations in person or by telephone. However, it can be reached by emailing prhsb(at)uni-leipzig.de.
WEBSITE

People returning from risk areas

What is a risk area?
The RKI website has an overview of the areas which it currently classifies as COVID-19 risk areas.

Overview

What are the rules on entering Saxony from a designated risk area?
Please check the website of the Saxon State Government for information on entering Saxony from risk areas, compulsory testing, and quarantine.

Learn more

Dealing With COVID-19 Symptoms, Reporting Obligations

This information is currently only available in German.

All Coronavirus News

Learn more

Information for Teaching Staff

Learn more

Information for Students

Learn more

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Situation in the Free State of Saxony (DE)

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