Germany: Herr Im Eigenen Betrieb – Kenntnis Von Überstunden Genügt Für Abgeltungsanspruch

Last Updated: 2 May 2018
Article by Christian von Bitter
Most Read Contributor in Germany, September 2018

Der Anspruch auf Überstundenabgeltung setzt u.a. voraus, dass der Arbeitgeber die geleisteten Überstunden angeordnet, gebilligt oder geduldet hat. Eine Duldung von Überstunden wird jedenfalls dann angenommen, wenn der Arbeitgeber Kenntnis von den Überstunden hat und nichts dagegen unternimmt.

LAG Berlin-Brandenburg, Urteil v. 28.06.2017 – 15 Sa 66/17

Der Kläger war von Juni 2015 bis Juli 2016 bei der Beklagten als Leiter Technik/Fuhrpark angestellt. Nach Beendigung des Arbeitsverhältnisses verlangte er die Bezahlung von 535,25 Überstunden, die er in der Zeit zwischen September 2015 und Mai 2016 geleistet haben will.

Nach Auffassung der beklagten Arbeitgeberin hätte der Kläger schon nicht erwarten können, dass Überstunden überhaupt vergütet werden, da er ein Monatsentgelt erhalten hatte, das über der Beitragsbemessungsgrenze der gesetzlichen Rentenversicherung lag. Zudem würden alle Führungskräfte im Unternehmen Überstunden leisten, ohne dafür eine gesonderte Vergütung zu erhalten.

Das Arbeitsgericht wies die Klage zunächst ab, weil der Kläger nicht dargelegt habe, wann der Arbeitgeber von den geleisteten Überstunden Kenntnis erlangt haben soll. Das Landesarbeitsgericht gab der Klage dagegen statt.

Das LAG verurteilte die Beklagte zur Abgeltung von insgesamt 529,25 Überstunden in Höhe von rund EUR 4.500,00 brutto.

Bei der gerichtlichen Geltendmachung von Überstunden muss ein Arbeitnehmer in zwei Stufen vortragen: Im ersten Schritt ist für jeden einzelnen Tag darzulegen, von wann bis wann der Arbeitnehmer gearbeitet hat. In einem zweiten Schritt muss er dann erläutern, inwiefern der Arbeitgeber die Leistung dieser Überstunden veranlasst hat oder sie ihm zumindest zuzurechnen sind. Hierzu muss der Arbeitnehmer vortragen, dass die geleisteten Überstunden vom Arbeitgeber angeordnet, gebilligt, geduldet oder jedenfalls zur Erledigung der geschuldeten Arbeit erforderlich waren.

Eine Duldung wird nach der Rechtsprechung des BAG dann angenommen, wenn der Arbeitgeber in Kenntnis der Überstundenleistung diese hinnimmt und keine Vorkehrungen trifft, sie zukünftig zu unterbinden, sondern weiter entgegennimmt.

Im vorliegenden Fall konnte sich die beklagte Arbeitgeberin nicht darauf berufen, dass der Kläger die Bezahlung seiner Überstunden nicht erwarten durfte, weil im Arbeitsvertrag eine ausdrückliche Regelung über die Bezahlung von Überstunden enthalten war. Eine solche Regelung wird nicht dadurch gegenstandslos, dass der Kläger ein hohes Grundgehalt erhalten hat oder weil andere Führungskräfte ebenfalls (rechtswidrig) unbezahlte Überstunden leisteten.

Zudem hatte die Arbeitgeberin nachweislich Kenntnis von den Überstunden des Klägers. Immerhin berief sie sich im Prozess selbst darauf, dass alle ihre Führungskräfte unentgeltlich Mehrarbeit leisten würden. Damit duldete sie auch die Überstunden des Klägers, weil sie trotz Kenntnis nicht dagegen vorgegangen war. Der vom Kläger geltend gemachte Anspruch war daher fast in voller Höhe begründet.

Praxistipp:

p>Das LAG gibt in seiner Entscheidung zu bedenken, dass der Arbeitgeber Herr im eigenen Betrieb" ist. Überstunden können dadurch vermieden werden, dass die Arbeitnehmer nach der Ableistung ihrer vertraglichen Arbeitszeit nach Hause geschickt werden. Setzt der Arbeitgeber seine Betriebsorganisation  hierfür nicht ein, gibt er dadurch zu erkennen, dass er die Ableistung weiterer Stunden hinnimmt, so dass sie ihm am Ende auch zuzurechnen sind. Die Ableistung nicht genehmigter Überstunden sollte daher konsequent überwacht werden.

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