New Laws and Regulations December 2018

Kama kawa, new month new laws. Here’s what to expect as the year draws to a close.

Asylum Law

From December 17, asylum seekers in Germany will have to play an active role in the resolution of their asylum application: appearing in person to the hearings, providing all necessary documents, having their fingerprints taken e.t.c. Lack of participation will affect the final result of the application and in some instances may lead to fines or imprisonment.

Third Gender in Birth Certificates

Last year, the Bundesverfassungsgericht (Federal Constitutional Court) ruled that it was unconstitutional for the sex field to remain empty in the birth certificate of an intersex person.

Therefore from this month onwards, intersex people can have their gender entered as “divers”.

Borderless Online-Shopping

Well, the EU is serious about making the EU one homogenous zone. After the removal of Geo-Blocking on sites like Netflix and co. the next frontier is online shopping.

From December 3, anyone shopping online within the EU will see the same prices regardless of location. Previously many companies set different prices for the different EU countries, but not anymore

Allergy free Lotions

Many creams, lotions and bath products in Germany may contain peanut oil, which presents a problem to those with an allergy. From December 25th, cosmetic products should contain very minimal amounts of allergic-reaction causing proteins.

DB increases ticket prices and changes train timetables

Twice each year, the DB makes changes to its timetables, with the biggest changes taking effect in December. Starting December 9th, DB plans to increase the number of ICE trains in operation, including the newest addition to its flock, the ICE 4 that is expected to cover routes between Hamburg, Munich, Stuttgart, Berlin and the Ruhrgebiet.

In addition to these changes, there will also be an increase of about 0.9% on the ticket prices. For the first and second class tickets, with the so-called Flexiprice, the increase will be about 1.9%.

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