In the fight against undeclared work, around 3,400 employees from the 41 main customs offices throughout Germany checked numerous businesses and shops. The focus was on compliance with the minimum wage, a spokeswoman for the General Customs Directorate told the German Press Agency in Hamburg today.

The colleagues from the financial control undeclared work were on the move across all sectors – from the car wash to the ice cream parlor to the nail salon. “It is particularly about the sectors that are subject to the statutory minimum wage,” the spokeswoman continued.

Striking shops discovered

More than 4,000 employers were checked and more than 10,000 local workers were questioned about their employment relationships. The data collected in this way will be evaluated in the coming days and weeks. In around 1,200 cases, there were already initial indications of possible irregularities, according to a press release.

The minimum wage was raised to twelve euros gross in October 2022. The German Customs and Finance Union welcomed the action because the minimum wage is worthless without effective controls. At the same time, she called for better technical equipment and a qualitative upgrade of the jobs in the financial control of illegal work (FKS).

According to the union, undeclared work caused damage of around 686.4 million euros last year. However, the number of unreported financial losses for the German state is much higher. “Even since the problem of undeclared work is increasing and is now characterized by forms of organized crime.”