Home / Europe / Germany / Labor, Employment & Pensions / Excellence Clusters
brilliant diamond placed on dark and reflective surface

CMS employment lawyers from a range of specialist areas work together within our excellence clusters. These clusters combine the specialist and industry knowledge relating to specific legal issues or particular practice groups and sectors.

Overview of our excellence clusters and their areas of focus


  • Structuring, introducing, modifying and closing occupational pension schemes
  • Structuring company pension systems
  • Drafting pension commitments
  • Developing/introducing new forms of pension system

Restructuring and Insolvency

  • National and international personnel measures (large-scale redundancies, business closures, business relocations), including in the event of imminent or actual insolvency
  • Negotiations with trade unions, employee representative committees and government agencies
  • Special works council structures
  • Reconciliation of interests and social compensation plans, accompanying works agreements and semi-formal works agreements
  • Representation at conciliation boards and in court proceedings, as well as support for individual employment law implementation

Outsourcing, Co-Determination and M&A

  • Transactional advice on employment law and co-determination
    • Clarification of the co-determination regime
    • Development of corporate structures that do not require co-determination
    • Structuring a Societas Europaea
    • Outsourcing and restructuring projects, including negotiations with works councils, staff committees and trade unions
    • National and cross-border transactions, as well as restructuring within a corporate group and supervisory board elections
  • M&A transactions

Compliance and Data Privacy

  • Implementation of national and international whistleblowing systems
  • Employee monitoring/staff surveillance
  • Individual and collective aspects of a code of conduct
  • Internal investigations, penalties in the event of compliance violations
  • Reducing risk and avoiding liability, creating compliance structures, introducing compliance instruments and delegation structures
  • Advice on preventing white-collar crime, protection of trade and business secrets, defence against industrial espionage; compliance due diligence on acquisitions
  • Protection of personal information, data transfer to other countries outside Europe, safe harbour process
  • Using social media

Energy and Utilities

  • Specialist knowledge and issues relating to the energy supply sector
    • Employment law aspects of implementing unbundling regulations
    • Specific employment law issues in the event of network acquisitions/concession changes
  • Many years of advisory experience

Financial Institutions

  • Access to specialist and industry knowledge regarding financial services providers such as banks, savings banks, insurance companies and funds
  • Regulatory and compliance requirements, e.g. when structuring remuneration for senior executives, implementing compliance systems, etc.


  • Knowledge of sector-specific factors within health care (hospitals, clinics, medical centres), in the pharmaceutical field (drug manufacturers) and in the care industry (operators, investors and owners)
  • Consideration of the many relevant public-law provisions and the special features of church-related employment law

Hotels & Leisure

  • Structures involving property owners, investors, operators and management in a field where international players predominate
  • Specific features of employment law relating to property transactions
  • National statutory requirements (such as the German Posted Workers Act [Arbeitnehmerentsendegesetz, AEntG]) and the sector-specific action required as a result

Metal and Chemicals Industry

  • Negotiation of company-internal and restructuring-related collective bargaining agreements, taking account of industry-specific aspects
  • Introduction of new production or IT systems in accordance with the specific company environment and (collective) regulations on co-determination
  • Introduction of new shift patterns, working time models and remuneration systems for production and office staff

Directors and Benefits

  • Legal and tactical support for a company or its corporate organs (board members, directors) with regard to appointments and dismissals and the conclusion and termination of service contracts
    • Management board remuneration in accordance with regulatory requirements and stock corporation law
    • Management remuneration systems and variable remuneration
    • Liability issues and protection via D&O insurance policies
  • Management incentives, share options, carried interest and similar incentive systems


  • Conducting conciliation and dispute procedures under employment law – from protection against dismissal to decree proceedings and cases involving conciliation boards
  • Litigation throughout Germany before employment courts at all levels, and before the European Court of Justice
  • Litigation before the regular courts in matters relating to directors and board members, as well as liability of company organs

Industrial Relations and Collective Bargaining

  • Legal and strategic advice on issues relating to the founding of associations, industrial action and collective bargaining law:
    • Company-internal and restructuring-related collective bargaining agreements
    • Collective bargaining agreements signed with an employers’ association and transitional collective bargaining agreements – in both the public and private sectors
    • Avoiding industrial action and reviewing the legality of such action
    • Contingency plans (drawing up of contingency strategies, protective pleadings, temporary injunctions, communication and strategies)
  • Dealing with pay rates in the temporary employment sector, e.g. in connection with the invalidity of CGZP collective agreements, consequence management
  • Dealing with sector supplements

TMC – Technology, Media & Communications

  • Many years of experience in advising/representing companies in the media sector; consideration of employment law exemptions designed to protect the editorial ethos and of the use of freelance service providers
  • Advising leading communication service providers on the particular features of employment law relating to call centres and associated services (customer services)

Transport and Logistics

  • Employment law advice for leading international logistics and transport companies (post and parcel delivery service providers, regional goods transport and public transport, leading manufacturers of rail vehicles)
  • Transactions, logistics outsourcing projects
  • Conclusion of service level agreements
  • Working on software and data protection agreements
  • Negotiation of collective agreement matters or cross-company operational structures and works council structures
  • Restructuring of working time and remuneration models 
CMS New Work
Prac­tic­al tools for in­tro­du­cing mo­bile work­ing
In the people busi­ness
Suc­cess­ful busi­nesses in every sec­tor know that em­ploy­ment terms, con­di­tions and be­ne­fits are key com­pet­it­ive weapons in today’s chan­ging and in­creas­ingly mo­bile mar­kets. At­tract­ing and keep­ing tal­en­ted...


New equity part­ner at Ham­burg of­fice: CMS ap­points Sören Seidel to strengthen...
Ham­burg – Com­mer­cial law firm CMS Ger­many is strength­en­ing the em­ploy­ment law team at its Ham­burg loc­a­tion and ex­pand­ing the part­ner­ship through the ap­point­ment of Sören Seidel. Seidel joins from in­ter­na­tion­al...
Work­ing from home, tele­work­ing and mo­bile work­ing
Please note that the leg­al situ­ation with re­gard to the Corona pan­dem­ic is sub­ject to con­stant change. There­fore the fol­low­ing in­form­a­tion only re­flects the above-men­tioned status. Thus it is ur­gently...
In the people busi­ness
Suc­cess­ful busi­nesses in every sec­tor know that em­ploy­ment terms, con­di­tions and be­ne­fits are key com­pet­it­ive weapons in today’s chan­ging and in­creas­ingly mo­bile mar­kets. At­tract­ing and keep­ing tal­en­ted...
Coronavir­us crisis and em­ploy­ment law – use­ful in­form­a­tion
The coronavir­us crisis is present­ing com­pan­ies with ex­treme chal­lenges. A mul­ti­tude of new top­ics and is­sues need to be ad­dressed. For many sec­tors, the ques­tion also arises as to how to deal with (tem­por­ar­ily)...
CMS ad­vises STRA­BAG on suc­cess­ful agree­ment with ISS on trans­fer of more...
Co­logne – STRA­BAG Prop­erty and Fa­cil­ity Ser­vices GmbH (STRA­BAG PFS) has signed an agree­ment with ISS Fa­cil­ity Ser­vices Hold­ing GmbH (ISS) re­gard­ing the con­tin­ued em­ploy­ment of more than 3,000 work­ers...
2018 Threshold Val­ues in La­bour Law
Many rights and du­ties of an em­ploy­er are dir­ectly linked to the num­ber of em­ploy­ees. The pro­tec­tion against un­fair dis­missal and the size and com­pos­i­tion of the em­ploy­ee rep­res­ent­at­ive bod­ies and of...
Em­ploy­ment Law – good to know …
Com­pan­ies must com­ply with the European Gen­er­al Data Pro­tec­tion Reg­u­la­tion by 25 May 2018 The sub­ject of data pri­vacy pro­tec­tion is rap­idly be­com­ing a cent­ral com­pli­ance is­sue that com­pan­ies can no longer...
Ger­man cor­por­ate code­termin­a­tion with­stands ECJ scru­tiny
Since the Ber­lin High­er Re­gion­al Court had re­ferred the ques­tion to the European Court of Justice (ECJ) in Oc­to­ber 2015 of wheth­er it was com­pat­ible with EU law reg­u­la­tions that only the work­ers em­ployed...
Em­ploy­ment law – in brief …
At the be­gin­ning of the year, the Bundeskabin­ett (Ger­man fed­er­al cab­in­et) passed the "Act on ad­van­cing the trans­par­ency of re­mu­ner­a­tion between wo­men and men" (Trans­par­ency of Re­mu­ner­a­tion Act (En­t­gelt­trans­par­en­zge­setz...
JUVE Awards 2016: CMS Ger­many is Law Firm of the Year for Em­ploy­ment and...
Ber­lin – CMS Ger­many has won the JUVE Award "Law Firm of the Year for Em­ploy­ment". JUVE, the in­dustry magazine for com­mer­cial law­yers, se­lects firms with out­stand­ing achieve­ments in the vari­ous fields...
Ger­man code­termin­a­tion un­der scru­tiny
Rul­ings Rendered by the Frank­furt Re­gion­al Court (LG Frank­furt) on 16 Feb­ru­ary 2015 and the Ber­lin High­er Re­gion­al Court (KG Ber­lin) on 16 Oc­to­ber 2015 We have already re­por­ted on the rul­ing rendered...
CMS ad­vises own­ers of Hanse Orga Group on in­vest­ment by Wa­ter­land
Ham­burg – Private equity in­vestor Wa­ter­land has taken a stake in fin­an­cial soft­ware spe­cial­ist Hanse Orga. An in­vest­ment agree­ment to that ef­fect has been signed between the hold­ing com­pany owned by...