According to the Berlin Administrative Court, a registered life partner is entitled to special leave to look after a son while continuing to pay the remuneration. The court announced this on Wednesday. Accordingly, an official of the capital’s court of justice had sued.
Her registered life partner reportedly gave birth to their son with the help of a doctor-assisted artificial insemination and sperm donation. However, she subsequently became so ill that the officer had to take care of the son. For this purpose, she applied to her place of work, the Court of Appeal, for the granting of special leave with continued payment of remuneration, which was refused.
She filed an objection, which the Senate Department for Justice rejected on the grounds that she had no legal parenting status. The civil servant took legal action against this before the administrative court – among other things, on the grounds that she could not be entered in the birth certificate. The court upheld the lawsuit.
The prerequisite for granting special leave is the presence of a “particularly important reason”. The interpretation that caring for a child is only an important reason if they are biological or adopted children, but not stepchildren or foster children, violates the right to equality and the protection of the family enshrined in the Basic Law Court its decision.
“Objectively not justified”
The unequal treatment of a civil servant who has the legal parental status for a child living in her household, with a civil servant who has no legal parenting, is “objectively not justified”. The purpose of granting special leave in the event of a serious illness of the caregiver is to make it easier for civil servants to reconcile family and work.
The granting of special leave also fulfills this purpose in the case of a registered civil partnership with a common child. The legal parenting position vis-à-vis the child in need of care is “not an objective differentiation criterion”. The Basic Law protects the actual living and upbringing community of parents and children as a family and does not require the existence of legal relationships.
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According to the court, this also protects the social-family community, which consists of the registered life partners and the biological or adopted child. The decision can be appealed to the Higher Administrative Court in Berlin-Brandenburg. (AFP)