Besides giving well-being and entertainment tips, LeipGlo is committed to building up a coronavirus-time resource and activity database for the local community. You can help by donating to our GoFund me campaign, sharing the campaign with others, and/or helping us gather valuable information – like this article containing an essential FAQ on Stadt Leipzig functions and how to navigate them in this unprecedented situation.
- How do I access the most up-to-date information?
- Where can I call when I have vital questions about Covid-19?
- What kinds of appointments are still available with Stadt Leipzig?
- What happens with my visa and dealings with the Foreigners’ Office?
- How do I reach the Jobcenter at Stadt Leipzig?
- What medical services are still available?
- Is it still possible to move?
How do I access the most up-to-date information?
Since the corona crisis hit the country, the national and regional governments have been trying to find a way to prevent the disease from spreading. Since it is difficult to think of every possible scenario, the rules on the national and regional levels are being changed every few weeks or days (on the city level). The German political system complicates things further: Even though there is one common catalogue of rules on the national level, the regions (Landesregierungen) as well as city governments are allowed to make those rules more rigorous.
This is why you’ll find different answers to a few questions regarding everyday life. It’s helpful to follow the national news, but you may find more detailed information on the situation in Leipzig in numerous regional media like MDR, LVZ, Radio Leipzig or Leipzig Fernsehen, as well as on the Stadt Leipzig website.
For those with difficulties understanding German, Stadt Leipzig provides the information translated into the languages of the biggest groups (English, Arabic, Spanish, Vietnamese, Russian, Romanian). Since the translation of topics that change dynamically takes a lot of resources, the selection of languages is limited. The Department of Migration and Integration will reevaluate this selection in the future.
Some basic information and practical advice in 15 languages can be also be found via the MiMi portal. In addition, the Government of Saxony has translated the newest documents into Arabic, Chinese, Czech, English, Farsi, French, Polish, Russian, Spanish, and Vietnamese. These can be found via their coronavirus crisis portal.
Where can I call when I have vital questions about Covid-19?
Since the regulations are not easy to understand and some rules are formulated vaguely, it is possible to pose detailed questions to experts. Due to high interest in the subject, some patience might be necessary to reach them.
- 0341 123-0: Telephone service for the public and Corona Hotline (Monday-Sunday, 8-18h, plus general information on coronavirus daily from 18-24h). The Corona Hotline is meant for people who had close contact with someone who tested positive for Corona virus and are showing symptoms of the disease.
- 0800 1000-214: Hotline of the Government of Saxony. Experts from different ministries answer questions about the current regulations, like moving, visiting other people, etc. The Ministry of Health provides a videocall service for people who are deaf and unable to speak.
- 0341 123-5885: Entrepreneurs can call this number especially with questions on law and finances. A lot of answers in German can be also found on this Stadt Leipzig page.
What kinds of appointments are still available with Stadt Leipzig?
All public offices are minimizing direct contact with other people. That is why it’s only possible to visit them if you make an appointment beforehand. If you’re not sure the office is open, always try to contact the official in charge via e-mail or phone. To make a new appointment, use the Stadt Leipzig online platform or, if needed, the 0341 123-0 telephone service for the public. Only certain necessary services are being provided for now.
Appointments are currently possible in case of:
- Registrations when changing residence;
- Issuing of identification documents;
- Application for and collection of IDs;
- Management of the online identification function.
Some of the services that are no longer available through the usual channels can be requested elsewhere. These include applying for:
- Certificates of good conduct and extracts, from the central business register online;
- Resident parking permit, by email (email@example.com);
- Registration certificates and tax identification number certificates, by email (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Extensions: The Federal Ministry of the Interior, Construction and Home Affairs has determined that no fine proceedings will be initiated for the violation of the ID requirement as long as the submitted document has not been expired for more than three months. In addition, for a period of initially six weeks after moving in or out, no fines will be imposed for violating the obligation to register or de-register.
The list of open offices and their new opening hours, as well as contact information, can be found via this Stadt Leipzig directory.
What happens with my visa and dealings with the Foreigners’ Office?
The restrictions also apply to the work of the Foreigners’ Office (Ausländerbehörde). In order to prevent the spread of the coronavirus as much as possible and to protect both visitors and employees, the office hours in the service areas of the regulatory office are suspended until further notice. Personal talks are currently only possible with an appointment.
With the general-decree enforcement of Residence Act (AufenthG) and Asylum Act (AsylG) measures – on the occasion of the Corona pandemic – all visas for foreigners residing in the city of Leipzig are being extended until April 19, 2020. This excludes those residing in their initial reception facility and those not entitled to take up residence in the City of Leipzig.
Those with expiring residence permits are granted a temporary permit (Fiktionsbescheinigung) for the period. An application is possible by email or post, and is validated via the receipt of a confirmation rather than a formal certificate. Many questions in this context are answered on the page of the Government of Saxony in German.
How do I reach the Jobcenter at Stadt Leipzig?
Appointments at the Jobcenter have automatically been cancelled. All questions should be asked via phone or e-mail. The Jobcenter is still available for customers and payments are guaranteed.
You can still reach the Jobcenter by phone at 0341 91310540 or 0341 91310705. Also here you might need some patience. Their online portal can be used for the further approval of applications, notifications of changes, or to submit other documents. After registration with your email address, the access data will be sent to you by post.
Applications for Arbeitslosengeld II unemployment benefits and all other documents can either be sent by letter – to Jobcenter Leipzig, Postfach 100831, 04008 Leipzig – or placed in the “house mailboxes” in front of the buildings. Personal appointments are only possible in emergencies. Emergencies are limited to the specific payment of cash benefits. Also in this case you should make an appointment by phone.
The Agentur für Arbeit’s main Corona FAQ will give you the most important questions and answers regarding these employment matters.
Tips and shortcuts:
- Application documents are available for download via the Stadt Leipzig Jobcenter platform or the Agentur’s document database;
- Information on short-time allowance (Kurzarbeitergeld) can be found via the Agentur’s FAQ pages (for employees and employers);
- There’s a special hotline for self-employed people, freelancers and all those affected, for questions on basic security: 0800 4555523.
Stadt Leipzig reports: The federal cabinet has passed a draft law to facilitate access to the social safety net and the use and protection of social service providers due to the coronavirus pandemic. The draft for the so-called “Social Safety Net” package entered into force on March 27, 2020. It should help provide citizens a cushion for the social and economic consequences of the pandemic. You can find more details on the city’s website.
What medical services are still available?
Hospitals are still working as usual. If you feel sick and need to visit a doctor, it’s best if you contact them via phone first.
Also open are pharmacies, outpatient care services, occupational therapy/ergotherapy, speech therapy, opticians, hearing aid acousticians, podiatrists, physiotherapists, psychotherapists, and medical supply stores.
Pregnancies (UPDATED APRIL 9, 2020): Fathers or any other people (family, friends) are not allowed into local maternity wards for the time being. In making this difficult decision, the healthcare facilities point out the importance of keeping the virus at bay. The regulations for Saxony do allow visitors to enter the wards, but ultimately it is up to the healthcare facilities to take measures to protect their employees from infection.
Is it still possible to move?
It is still possible to move, but since the detailed rules on this topic were not standardized until now, you might find different information on this issue on social media. The Government of Saxony writes the following: A moving company may carry out the move since professional activities are permitted. Aid from moving helpers who are not part of the household is not permitted. However, life partners and spouses may support you. If the moving person is pregnant, severely disabled, sick or otherwise in need of support, or has underage children to take care of, up to two people not living in the household may help with the move.
By Dorota Kusiak
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