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Apply for start-up money

The introductory allowance is intended to provide you with a financial incentive if your income is initially little or no higher than your previous basic income support benefits.

The introductory allowance is granted to you as a non-recognizable subsidy.

The amount of the grant can be determined by each job center on the basis of the statutory criteria and amounts to a maximum of 50% of the standard rate of the basic income support. When calculating the amount, the duration of your unemployment and the size of your benefit community are taken into account. The amount of the introductory allowance therefore varies depending on the individual case.

Your Jobcenter can also make a flat-rate assessment for special groups of people. This makes it easier to make the same decisions in similar cases and applies in particular to

  • The long-term unemployed,
  • single parents,
  • migrants,
  • older people,
  • people with health impairments,
  • Women in partner benefit communities.

You can receive an introductory allowance for a maximum of 24 months.

Your Jobcenter alone decides whether and how much you can receive. This means that you have no legal entitlement to it.

Process flow

To receive the introductory allowance, you should first arrange a consultation at your local Jobcenter:

  • Contact the relevant job center and arrange an appointment.
  • In the case of employment subject to social insurance contributions, you can also apply for an introductory allowance online.
  • The integration specialist will record your data and check whether you meet the eligibility requirements.
  • The advisor will make a discretionary decision on this basis.
  • You will receive a notification by post or online with the approval or rejection of your application.
  • If your application is approved, the Jobcenter will transfer the amount to your account monthly in advance.


  • You will receive a citizen's allowance before starting your new job. Unemployment is not a prerequisite.
  • You must submit the application to your Jobcenter before actually taking up employment.
  • Your new self-employment or your new job is suitable for overcoming your need for assistance in the long term.
  • The introductory allowance is necessary for your integration into the general labor market.
  • You must work at least 15 hours per week.
  • Additional requirements for self-employment/starting up a business:
  • Positive assessment by the Jobcenter of
    • your personal suitability,
  • the economic viability of your self-employed activity

Which documents are required?

For self-employment/start-up:

  • Application for funding
  • Curriculum vitae, including any necessary proof of qualifications
  • Meaningful description of the business start-up project to explain the business idea (business concept/business plan)
  • Capital requirement and financing plan
  • Turnover and profitability forecast (expected turnover and costs) for the next 3 years
  • If applicable, statement from an external third party or an expert body on the viability of your company
    • Expert bodies are: Chambers, trade associations, credit institutions, start-up initiatives
  • Proof that you are self-employed, for example through your business registration, notification to the tax office or confirmation of the change from a secondary trade to a main trade
  • If necessary, further proof, for example of your
    • accident insurance or
    • business liability insurance or
    • entry in the register of craftsmen

For employment subject to social security contributions:

  • Application for funding
  • Copy of your employment contract

What deadlines do I have to pay attention to?

You must not have started your gainful employment yet when you apply for an introductory allowance. This applies both to taking up employment subject to social insurance contributions and to self-employment.


  • objection
  • Administrative court action

Technically approved by

Federal Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs (BMAS)

Professionally released on



The text was automatically translated based on the German content.

Source: Serviceportal Niedersachsen (Portalverbund des Bundes und der Länder)