Child benefit and other benefits
The German State supports parents by providing a child benefit payment. Fathers and mothers on a low income are also entitled to receive other benefits.
Parents are entitled to child benefit until their child turns 18 if the child lives in Germany, in a Member State of the European Union, or in a signatory state to the Agreement on the European Economic Area. If the child takes up a place on a vocational training course or is studying, this entitlement continues until the child turns 25 as a maximum.
If they live or work in Germany, nationals of EU Member States, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland have the same entitlement to child benefit as German nationals.
The level of child benefit
You will receive a monthly payment of EUR 190 per child for the first two children, EUR 196 for the third child and EUR 221 for every subsequent child. You must apply for child benefit from the family benefits office at the employment agency. The child benefit application form can be obtained from the family benefits office (and also online from the link in the right-hand column). The monthly child benefit will increase by 2 Euro per child as per 1 January 2016.
display as attention: Important information
Supplementary child benefit
The German State supports families on a low income by means of the "supplementary child benefit", which is paid subject to the following conditions:
- The parents live in the same household as their unmarried children who are aged under 25.
- Their income and assets are sufficient to ensure the parents' minimum basic standard of living, but not that of their children.
- The parents are not entitled to social welfare benefits or unemployment benefit II.
The level of the supplementary child benefit depends on the parents’ income and assets, and is a maximum of EUR 140 per child per month (a maximum of EUR 160 per month 1 July 2016). The application form for supplementary child benefit can be obtained from the family benefits office (and also online from the link in the right-hand column).
Education and participation benefits
Furthermore, persons drawing supplementary child benefit or housing benefit for their children have also been able since 1 January 2011 to claim education and participation benefit (Teilhabeleistungen). These include:
- day trips from school or child day care centre,
- class trips of several days' duration from school or child day care centre,
- 100 EUR per annum for school materials,
- allowance for school children's travel costs,
- reasonable learning support,
- afternoon care at school, child day care centre or crèche,
- benefits for participating in the social or cultural life of the community.
The local authorities, i.e. the town, municipal or district authorities are responsible for the education and participation benefits (Teilhabeleistungen).