Germany: Changes in laws and regulations from October 2019

At the beginning of each month, a number of new laws and regulations enter into force in Germany. In October 2019, the clocks will be switched to winter time, low-income households in Berlin get a higher rent subsidy, vehicles can now be registered online without visiting the registration office etc. The African Courier reveals the most important changes for consumers.

Summer/Winter time changeover

On Sunday, 27 October, at three o’clock in the morning, the clocks will be switched to winter time. Because the clocks are reset backwards, you get an hour more sleep. For computers, smartphones and smart TVs, the time changeover is usually automatic.

Driving license exam questions will be revised

The official questionnaire for the theoretical driver’s license exam will be revised from 1 October. Old questions will be revised and new ones added. Whoever takes his theoretical driving test from October 2019 should make sure that his preparation software is updated. If you are unsure, ask at your driving school.

More money for rent subsidy in Berlin

From 1 October, low-income households will receive a higher rent subsidy. This was decided by the Berlin Senate on the submission of the Senator for Integration, Labour and Social Affairs, Elke Breitenbach. However, it is still unclear how much money there will be in the future. The city-state will announce the new subsidy regime during this month.

Online vehicle registration

From 1 October, vehicle owners can also register cars and motorcycles from home – on their computers or smartphones.

From autumn, phase three of the i-Kfz project will be launched (i-Kfz means internet-based vehicle registration). A car can now be registered or deregistered or re-registered online – without having to visit the vehicle registration office.

READ ALSO New laws and regulations in Germany from September 2019

This is already partly possible though, but has until now only applied to de-registration or re-registration in the same registration area (Zulassungsbezirk) – these were the first two phases of the i-Kfz project. Now the next phase follows. Specifically, vehicle owners can now do the initial registration, the full re-registration, and vehicle ownership and address changes online.

To register a car or motorcycle online from October, you not only need Internet access. “An ID card with online function is necessary for identification. In addition, a reader or a smartphone with NFC chip for wireless data transmission is needed”, an official said.

Femi Awoniyi

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