By obeying certain rules, every individual can help protect the elderly and people with pre-existing medical conditions from the coronavirus. Flattening the curve is necessary so as to not overburden the health care system. Government authorities have taken measures to slow the virus’ spread and to reduce its economic impact. The Federal Government is providing current information on the coronavirus through various channels and in different languages.


How can I protect myself and others?

Everyone can help prevent the coronavirus from spreading so quickly. Stay at home, if possible. Have as little contact as possible with people you don’t live with. This is the only way to avoid infection. Also important:

For whom is the virus particularly dangerous?

for people with pre-existing illnesses (e.g. cardiovascular disease, diabetes, respiratory, liver and kidney diseases and cancer)
for patients with a weakened immune system (due to an illness or medication, such as cortisone)
for the elderly

What should I do if I think I have been infected?

Have you had personal contact with someone who has tested positive for coronavirus? Then contact your local public health office by telephone immediately! Even if there are no visible signs of illness. You must stay at home until the results are available.

Public life

Why are nurseries, schools and shops closed?

To reduce contact so that fewer people get infected. However, shops that sell food or drugstore items are still open. 
These regulations currently apply throughout Germany. 

How much contact with other people is allowed?

You may only go out outside of your home or apartment alone – or with a maximum of one person who does not live with you. You can go out together with people who live in the same household as you. However, you are not allowed to meet other people.

You are allowed outside:

  • to go to work
  • to take your children to their emergency child care
  • to go shopping and visit the doctor
  • to participate in meetings, necessary appointments and examinations
  • to help others or
  • to get some fresh air and do some exercise

Stricter rules apply in individual federal states. Please refer to the website of the respective state government for more information.

Work and money

What happens if my employer temporarily closes because of corona?

You are generally still entitled to remuneration, even if you cannot work.

What should I do if I lose my job?

In this case, you must register with your job centre or employment office. Job centres and employment offices are continuing to work; however, they do not receive visitors. You can register as unemployed by telephone, letter or online and all applications can also be submitted online. Important: the rules on protection against unfair dismissal also apply during the corona period.

What happens if my employer has mandated short-time work?

If your employer has justifiably mandated short-time work, you can receive up to twelve months short-time allowance. It is the same as unemployment benefits. The relevant employment agency checks whether all conditions for the payment of short-time allowance are met on a case-by-case basis.

What help can I get for my business?

The Kreditanstalt für Wiederaufbau (KfW) is offering various favourable business loans. Please contact your bank or financing partners that pass on KfW loans. 

What kind of support do self-employed persons and micro-entrepreneurs get?

Self-employed persons, freelancers and small companies can apply to their federal state for a three-month subsidy to bridge liquidity shortfalls. This is a one-off payment of up to € 9,000 for up to five employees or up to € 15,000 for up to ten employees. The federal states have additional programmes.

What happens if I am no longer able to pay my rent due to the consequences of the corona crisis?

Homes and business premises may not be terminated if the corona crisis causes delays in rent payments. The same applies to electricity, gas and telephone connections. If you owe rent between 1 April and 30 June 2020 due to the consequences of the corona crisis, landlords may not terminate your tenancy contract. You have the option of subsequently paying the rent up to the end of June 2022. There are federal and state financial subsidies for operating costs for commercial tenants who are self-employed.

Can I apply for child allowance?

You can potentially get child allowance if your income is only enough for yourself and not for the whole family. Only the last monthly income will be checked for new applications during this time. This regulation is temporary.


Can I travel to my home country? Can I return to Germany?

Generally, travel that is not absolutely essential should be avoided. Please ensure that you know the current entry restrictions and information on temporary border controls before you start your journey. Due to the dynamic situation, changes to current regulations may become necessary at short notice.

What is the government doing?

The measures taken by the Federal Government and the federal states should help limit the spread of the virus. The Federal Government has a crisis management team that is working on measures to contain the coronavirus and protect the population. In addition, the Federal Government has agreed an extensive package of measures amounting to around 750 billion euros to cushion the economic effects.