Sick Leave without having been seen by a doctor: German´s trend or trash?
Advertising sick leave without a doctor’s visit – Hamburg Higher Regional Court, Judgment of 05.11.2020 – 5 U 175/19
In the context of an advertised business model, doctors shall issue without a specific visit and with the help of an internet questionnaire a certificate of incapacity for work (AUB in German). The certificate is sent to the user of the offer via WhatsApp and by post.
The advertising of the offer to issue certificates of incapacity for work (“AU-Scheine”/AUB) via the messenger service WhatsApp in the context of remote treatment does not fulfil the requirements of Section 9 sentence 2 HWG and is therefore considered in Germany “anti-competitive” and not legal. It is not compatible with the requirement of medical care for a doctor to completely forego personal contact with the patient and base his diagnosis solely on the patient’s answering a few questions via the internet.
The medical examination of the concrete individual case remains necessary in Germany.
Nothing is said about the admissibility of the advertised remote treatment as such. Let’s see what 2022 will bring to us!
Have you been offered a “WhatsApp AUB”? Are you unsure about the legal consequences of an internet certification of sick leave? Just call us. Our legals are medical law experts. They will help you clarify all questions.