16. May 2023In Allgemein2 Minutes

The Whistleblower Protection Act (HinSchG) is finally here. On 12 May 2023, the Federal Council approved the draft law.

Months of hang-ups

The coalition and the CDU/CSU have not yet been able to reach an agreement. Opponents of the law warned, among other things, of the high costs for businesses. In addition, there would be one-off costs of 190 million euros for implementation. According to the draft law, the annual compliance costs for business amount to about 200.9 million euros.

At the beginning of April, the Union therefore called for a mediation committee to resolve the conflict. On 11 May, the plenum of the Bundestag approved the compromise on the Whistleblower Protection Act. Adjustments to the reporting channels are planned. For example, reporting offices will no longer be obliged to accept anonymous tips. In addition, the penalty for violating the law will now be reduced from 100,000 to 50,000 euros. Further changes concern the rules of evidence in cases of discrimination.

Federal government in default

The federal government has already been behind schedule with the new law since December 2022. Germany should have already implemented the EU’s Whistleblower Directive into national law at this time. The EU has initiated infringement proceedings against Germany, which has so far cost Germany approximately 62,000 euros in fines per day.

The wait is now over. Under the pressure of the initiated infringement proceedings, the Bundestag and the Bundesrat were able to agree on a version of the Whistleblower Protection Act (HinSchG) with the help of the Mediation Committee.

All information on the new law and what companies have to do now can be found in our FAQ: