Apply for funding for continuing vocational training at the Federal Employment Agency
General support for continuing education with the education voucher:
With an education voucher, the Employment Agency can cover all or part of the costs of your professional training. Before you receive an education voucher, the responsible employment agency will check with you whether further training is necessary for you.
You can redeem the education voucher at an educational institution of your choice if it is approved for continuing education funding.
The continuing education measure itself must also be approved and fit in with the education voucher. Among other things, the education voucher specifies:
- the educational goal,
- the time it takes to achieve the educational goal,
- the content of the qualification,
- the regional scope, and
- the period of validity during which you must have redeemed the education voucher and started your participation.
In principle, the education voucher is valid at your place of residence and at places that you can reach daily from home.
The training costs that the Employment Agency will pay for you usually include:
- course costs and costs for the aptitude test,
- travel expenses,
- Costs for external accommodation and meals,
- Childcare costs.
Continuing education premiums:
Within the framework of further training funded by the Employment Agency and started before 31 December 2023, which leads to a qualification in a training occupation for which a training period of at least 2 years is stipulated in federal or state law, you will receive a continuing education premium of EUR 1,000 after passing an intermediate examination regulated in these regulations and EUR 1,500 after passing the final examination.
Subsequent acquisition of the lower secondary school leaving certificate:
Under certain conditions, funding is also available for the subsequent acquisition of the lower secondary school leaving certificate or an equivalent qualification.
Support for employees without a vocational qualification or with a vocational qualification that cannot be used (low-skilled workers):
If you do not yet have a vocational qualification or have not worked in your learned profession for more than 4 years and can no longer practice the profession you previously learned due to non-employment, you will be supported by taking part in further training measures for the subsequent acquisition of a vocational qualification by covering the costs of further training.
The following are included in these 4 years:
- Periods of employment in unskilled and semi-skilled work
- Time to care for relatives
- Child-rearing times
- Periods of marginal employment
If you are entitled to unemployment benefit before the start of your training, you will also be paid unemployment benefit for the period of further training.
Acquisition of basic skills:
If you still lack basic skills in the areas of reading, writing, mathematics or information and communication technologies, the Employment Agency can also support further training in these areas under certain conditions.
Funding for employed workers:
The Employment Agency can also promote the further training of employees, in particular if they work in occupations that can be replaced by technologies or are otherwise affected by structural change, or if they are seeking further training in a bottleneck occupation, i.e. in an occupation in which there is a shortage of skilled workers.
In principle, your employer must contribute to the costs of the course. He can also receive wage subsidies while you are doing further training. The size of the share depends on the size of the company:
- Allowances for wages:
- up to 75% for micro-enterprises (up to 9 employees).
- up to 50% for small and medium-sized enterprises (10 to 249 employees) and
- up to 25% for companies with 250 or more employees,
- Subsidies for the course costs:
- 100% in micro-enterprises with up to 9 employees,
- up to 50% in companies with up to 249 employees,
- up to 25% in companies with 250 or more employees,
- up to 15% for large companies with 2,500 or more employees,
- up to 100% in small and medium-sized enterprises (up to 249 employees) for older employees (aged 45 and over) or employees with a severe disability.
- In addition, up to 15% higher subsidies for the course costs and remuneration in the case of a collective agreement or a works agreement on vocational qualification (plus 5%) and in the case of special further training needs (plus 10%).
- Assumption of the full costs of the course and a wage subsidy of up to 100% in the case of low-skilled persons in employment in continuing training with the aim of obtaining a vocational qualification.
If you are unemployed or threatened with unemployment or want to catch up on a vocational qualification, you can only initiate your further training support together with your placement specialist:
- To do this, make an appointment at your employment agency responsible for your place of residence. Optionally, you can send an enquiry to your employment agency online.
- In a personal interview, it will be clarified whether you need additional qualifications in order to find a job as quickly as possible.
- Your placement specialist will then check whether you meet the requirements for funding.
- Under certain conditions, the Medical Service or the Occupational Psychological Service may also be involved in the assessment of aptitude.
- Education voucher:
- Your placement specialist will usually issue you with the education voucher directly during the consultation.
- You choose a suitable course yourself and register.
- Before the start of the measure, the educational institution confirms your acceptance into the course on the education voucher and informs the Employment Agency. The Employment Agency will then check whether the course matches the education voucher and whether you meet the admission requirements. If this is the case, funding for further training is possible and you can start continuing education.
- You should start applying for suitable vacancies during your training.
- If you fall ill during the course, you must inform both the Employment Agency and the educational institution.
- Even during the training, you will continue to be supervised by your responsible placement specialist and will discuss the further steps of your job search with him/her, especially before the end of the training measure.
If you are employed, discuss your training needs with your employer. You can then contact the Employment Agency and clarify the next steps.
As a rule, the costs for your further training can be covered if:
- you have taken part in counselling provided by the Employment Agency,
- the further training is necessary to end your unemployment, to make up for a missing vocational qualification or to avert imminent unemployment
- the acquisition of advanced vocational skills improves individual employability and makes training fit for purpose in the labour market, and
- the training measure and the educational institution are approved for the promotion of continuing education.
Funding is also possible for employees under certain conditions if:
- the continuing training goes beyond short-term adaptation training that is exclusively job-related,
- the vocational qualification was usually at least 4 years ago,
- you have not taken part in further vocational training funded by the Employment Agency in the last 4 years prior to the application,
- the training is carried out outside the company or by an approved institution in the company,
- lasts more than 120 hours,
- the institution and the measure are authorised, and
- You carry out activities that can be replaced by technologies or are otherwise affected by structural change, or you want to learn a bottleneck occupation (does not apply to older employees (aged 45 and over) or employees with a severe disability in small and medium-sized enterprises (up to 249 employees).
Which documents are required?
- Curriculum vitae
The education voucher is usually issued directly during the consultation.
Applications / forms
Forms available: No
Written form required: No
Informal application possible: Yes
Personal appearance required: Yes
Online services available: Yes
Technically approved by
Federal Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs (BMAS)
Professionally released on
The text was automatically translated based on the German content.