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Germany: Legally compliant use of generative AI (ChatGPT) for employees - what employers need to consider

30 May 2023


The use of ChatGPT offers many opportunities to increase efficiency in text creation and design as well as in numerous other areas of the company. On the other hand, there are also legal risks, depending on the application scenario.

Each use case should be carefully examined and defined. From a legal point of view, it can be problematic if employees decide for themselves which AI systems they use and for what purposes. This can not only entail privacy risks, but also lead to copyright claims against the company.

In the future, the European Union's planned AI Act and liability issues will also have to be taken into account. It therefore pays off for companies to develop suitable guidelines now to protect employees and the company from legal risks or at least to reduce them.

A usage guideline for generative AI should cover the following aspects:


  1. Definition of permissible areas of application: Which purposes should be permitted, which undesirable application scenarios should be prohibited?
  2. Restriction to business purposes: The use of ChatGPT should be explicitly restricted to business purposes in the company.
  3. No entry of personal data: Personal data should not be processed via AI systems, unless there is a legal basis under the GDPR.
  4. Maintain confidentiality: Confidential company information, including trade and business secrets, should not be entered through ChatGPT.
  5. Review of expenses: Employees should check the generated expenses for accuracy and completeness before further use.
  6. Compliance with Terms of Service and Policies: The terms and conditions and policies of the provider (OpenAI) should be followed.
  7. Avoidance of infringements: Measures should be taken to minimize possible infringements of third-party rights, such as copyright or trademark rights.
  8. Transparency: Employees should always identify AI products as such


For further information, please contact:

Lena Reich, Lawyer,

Matthias Gleich, Lawyer,



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