The following points will hopefully assist you in preparing to look for work with the British Forces in Germany as a family member.
Once you arrive at your new station you will of course have your hands full setting up your new home, arranging schooling for the children and registering at the local medical centre etc.
If you are going to be looking for work then there are a few options open to you. The main employers of civilians are the Labour Support Units (LSU's), Services Childrens Schools and NAAFI shops. This website deals mainly with LSU vacancies and conditions of service but you will also find lists of vacancies for non teaching school positions as well as SSAFA Nursing vacancies.
In order to look at current vacancies simply click DEP Employment Vacancies in the Employment menu, followed by the relevant garrison area in which you will be living. Each garrison heading also provides a little background information about the LSU main office, where it can be found as well as points of contact. A list of stations can be found under each heading.
The following documents will without doubt assist you greatly when you register for employment with your local LSU:
- ID Card or Temporary ID.
- Birth and Marriage certificate.
- National Insurance Number.
- Previous Service Record (copies of any prior LSU/Schools contracts or End of Service certificates (BFG form 126) would be useful.
- A current CV.
- Any references.
You can download the Registration Form from the Forms Central page. This should be completed and submitted before applying for a job.
The following documents are essential if you obtain employment with the LSU:
- ID Card or Temporary ID Card.
- Birth and Marriage certificates.
All new employees are required to sign the Official Secrets Act and depending on the type of work gained, some form of security vetting will take place. To this end it is advisable to take along a list of places of residence and employment over the last 5 years. This information should include full dates and addresses.
Claiming Job Seekers Allowance
Although it is not possible for you to claim Job Seekers Allowance through British Forces Germany it may be possible for you to "Export" your entitlement under European Community Regulations.
A resident of a European country will usually have the right to seek work in another European state. To assist financially it may be possible to export job seekers allowance and for it to be paid in the country where employment is being sought for a period of upto three months.
Forces families may be able to use this scheme, provided conditions are met. It is therefore recommended that you visit your local benefit office well in advance to check on current conditions. Basically you would need to be registered in your country of origin (UK) as a claimant and explain that you will be visiting another European country to look for work. You will then be given a bilingual document explaining that you wish to seek work and claim benefit in the country you are visiting.
Moving to another EEA country: how EU Regulations affect you
You must normally register with the local German unemployment office within seven days of leaving the UK in order for your claim to be accepted!
Your local Labour Support Unit (LSU) will be able to explain where to find the unemployment office (Agentur für Arbeit).
You should take a German speaker with you to the unemployment office as you cannot expect the staff to be able to speak English.
You will be required to complete a claim form in German and must of course tell the staff what type of work you are looking for and how many hours per week you can work.
It is really no different to the UK. If you are not seeking work then you are not entitled to claim!