Financial Benefits for Families

(Symbolbild) Eine silberne Gerldkassette steht auf der Straße. Unter ihr liegt Kleingeld und je ein 500€-Schein und ein 200€-Schein.
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Child Benefit

Parents can apply for child benefit for their children up to the age of at least 18. Under certain circumstances, foreign parents are also eligible for this benefit.

Child support can be applied for by:

  • citizens of EU-member states as well as of Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland who reside permanently in Germany;
  • non-EU or non-EEA Citizens residing permanently in Germany in possession of a settlement permit or a residence permit that allows gainful employment;
  • citizens of Algeria, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Kosovo, Morocco, Montenegro, Serbia, Tunisia and Turkey in conformity with bilateral agreements, as long as citizens of these countries are employed or receive unemployment compensation. 

Labour-contract workers or employees who have been temporarily transferred to work in Germany by their employers based abroad have no claim to child support payments.

The monthly amount of child benefit is currently 204 euros for the first and second child, 210 euros for the third child and 235 euros for the fourth and each additional child.

Application for Child Benefit

The application must be submitted in writing to the respective Family or Child Benefit Office. The forms are available online (click on "in anderen Sprachen" to obtain the forms in other languages).

Generally, we recommend you to submit an application and familiarise yourself in detail with the responsibilities of the Family Offices as well as your own rights. Currently, a residence permit for the purpose of (doctoral) study does not constitute eligibility for child benefit. Therefore, if you hold this kind of residence permit, you should verify whether your partner is eligible.

On the website of the Bundesargentur für Arbeit you can read more about the application for child benefit. If you have an employment contract at the University you can apply for child benefit at the VBL (website of VBL).

Maternity Protection and Parental Leave

Employees are entitled to take parental leave before their child's third birthday. Parental Leave enables you to care for your child. You can find more information on parental leave on this website and in the family portal.

Pregnant employees are given maternity rights. This includes maternity protection leave which begins 6 weeks before the birth and ends 8 weeks after the birth. This protection is regulated by law in Germany and the mother is not allowed to work during this time. Your position will be held open for you so that you can return to your work after the end of the maternity protection leave. For further information on maternity rights and parental leave, please contact the Personnel Department of the university.

More information on maternity rights can be found in the family portal and in this brochure.

Parental Benefit (Plus)

Parental allowance and parental allowance plus are designed to compensate for loss of income after the birth of a child. The allowance and eligibility requirements vary according to the parents' employment situation after the birth of the child, but can be combined. Also a partnership bonus exists that will allow the eligibility period for parental allowance to be extended yet further.

Eligibility requirements:

Mothers and fathers are eligible for parental alllowance and parental allowance plus if they

  • are entitled to pursue gainful employment
  • care for and raise their children themselves after birth
  • pursue gainful employment for no more than 30 hours a week
  • live in the same household with their children
  • are resident in or habitually reside in Germany.

On the following websites you can find more information on applications and eligibility for parental allowance:

Child Benefit Offices

Family Benefit Office Krefeld (responsible for Duisburg)
Krefeld Philadelphiastr. 2
47799 Krefeld

Family Benefit Office Essen
Berliner Platz 10
45127 Essen

Information hotline: 0800 4 5555 30

Tip: Tax allowance for children

In Germany taxpayers are entitled to a tax allowance for each child. This entitlement starts with the month in which the child is born. If you have children, you can register these child allowances with the local tax authority. In most cases, this will translate into a lower tax burden. Child benefit will be offset against these tax allowances.