Main elements of the Prostitute Protection Act

The German „Prostitute Protection Act“ (Prostituiertenschutzgesetz) came into effect on 1 July 2017 and regulates the following essential issues: mandatory registration as sex worker including a prior health consultation, obligation to obtain a permit as sex service business operator, mandatory use of condoms and prohibition of advertising sex without condoms.

  1. Before starting to work as a sex worker, the person intending to do sex work must personally register at the authority located in the area where this person plans to primarily offer sex services. Prior to the registration the person must undergo a health consultation at a public health office mandated by the competent German federal state. The registration takes place at an authority also determined by the German federal state and includes an informational and advisory talk before the registration certificate is issued.
  2. Operating a sex service business requires a permit of the competent German authority. In this context the competent authority will assess whether the person is sufficiently reliable to run a prostitution business. The authority must also approve the operator’s business concept. In terms of content, a permit may be restricted and can contain certain conditions. Pursuant to the German Prostitute Protection Act (ProstSchG) sex service businesses must meet various minimum requirements.
  3. Customers of sex workers must ensure that condoms are used when having sexual intercourse. The operators of sex service businesses are obligated to inform about the mandatory use of condoms in brothels and similar establishments by posting a notice affixed at a clearly visible location.
  4. It is prohibited to advertise for sex without condoms or sex with pregnant women even if the wording of this rule is linguistically ambiguous.