There has been a significant increase in A1 certificates in 2019.

UM – 05/2021

In 2019, significantly more A1 certificates have been issued by social security institutions than ever before. Whereas in previous years the figure was around 1.7 million certificates per year, in 2019 the "PD (Portable Document) A1" form was issued around 4.6 million times. Germany recorded the highest increase. The German Social Insurance institutions issued 1.8 million PD A1s. Poland ranks second with around 650,000 cases. These figures are taken from the recent "Posting of workers" report by the HIVA - Research Institute for Work and Society at the University of Leuven.

The coordination law revision has been "stalled"

The figures do not necessarily reflect an increase in postings or employment in other EU countries. It is more likely that the forms are being requested more often these days. One reason is the ongoing discussion on the still unfinished revision of the Social Security Coordination Regulations 883/2004 and 987/2009. The discussion about the exemption definitions for the previous application for PD A1 has become the bone of contention here. The revision has so far failed on the question of in which cases should a PD A1 be applied for in advance, even if it is only for short business trips to other EU countries. And a solution is still not in sight.

This obligation to apply is to be taken seriously

Another reason is a change in legislation in some member states. France or Austria, for instance, have clarified their rules on combating illegal employment and threaten to impose fines if no A1 certificate can be presented. Both of these factors appear to have increased employers' awareness of their obligations in this regard. In the past, the approach to applying for A1 was much more casual, especially for short business and official trips.

Deployments account for the majority of A1

The lion's share of A1 certification is made up of deployment cases under Article 12 of Regulation 883/2004 (3.2 million cases). 1.3 million forms have been issued based on Article 13 ("pursuit of activities in two or more member states"). In most member states, more PD A1s are issued due to deployment cases. There are also countries where it is the other way round: In Poland, about 60 percent of all PD A1s issued are motivated by Article 13. The situation is similar in Cyprus or the Czech Republic.