The assessor has to issue a written reference certificate. In Germany, there are two types of certificates:

  • Simple References [Einfaches Zeugnis]
  • Qualified Certificate [Qualifiziertes Zeugnis]


A simple reference includes: …shall not include
Personal Details Date of Birth*
Academic Degree Address
Presentation of the nature of the employment (concrete, graphic and easy to understand) Interruptions due to sickness or days off
Job description Reasons for termination of the employment relationships*
Leadership authority, nature and duration [See: Reference contents]
Particular authorizations (for instance power of attorney etc.), duration
Attended training courses

* Exceptions are allowed if expressly requested by the employee


A qualified certificate additionally includes: … besides (optionally)
Additional information on the conduct at the workplace “willingness to work”
Leadership qualities Results
Job performance Expertise
Work organization (economy)
Quality of work (quality)
Scope of work
Expression assets
Negotiation Skills etc…


The employer must refer to the entire services/works of the employment relationship. It must not focus on individual positive or negative phases.

The employee is not entitled to any claims on concessions such as congratulations or condolences. It is at the discretion of the exhibitor whether to wish happiness to the employee or if he is sorry for the termination of this latter.

The exhibition of the “Qualifizierten Zeugnisses” is only upon request of the employee.

Please consider consulting an attorney in case your employer decides to issue a qualified certificate without your authorization.