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Applying for child benefit


The payment of child benefit does not depend on your income. This amounts to 250.00 euros for each child.

In principle, you are entitled to child benefit from the birth of your child until the child's 18th birthday. You may also be entitled to child benefit after that, but no later than your 25th birthday:

  • Children between 18 and 21 years of age: You will receive child benefit if:
    • your child is not gainfully employed, and
    • registered as a jobseeker.
  • Children between 18 and 25 years of age: You will receive child benefit if:
    • your child is in training (school/job/university),
    • your child is in a transition period of no more than four months, for example between leaving school and vocational training or a recognised voluntary service,
    • your child is unable to start or continue his or her education because he or she has not been able to find a training place,
    • your child is completing a recognised voluntary service,
    • Your child has already completed initial vocational training, but is still in training, for example, and works a maximum of up to 20 hours per week on the side.

If your child has a disability and is unable to provide for themselves financially, you will still be entitled to child benefit after your child's 25th birthday. However, the disability must have occurred before the child's 25th birthday and must be the cause of your child's inability to provide for themselves financially.

Child benefit is paid to you if your child lives in your sole household. If the child lives with both parents, you can jointly determine which of you should receive child benefit.

Process flow

You can apply for child benefit in writing using the form provided. You also have the option of filling out the applications for child benefit from birth and the application for child benefit when you reach the age of majority online. You can upload proof directly. The data is then transmitted directly to the family benefits office.

For an electronic application with an electronic proof of identity:

  • Go to the website of the Family Benefit Office of the Federal Employment Agency and call up the online application. To authenticate, you need either
    • the new identity card with online ID function or
    • the eID card for EU citizens and nationals of the European Economic Area, or
    • an electronic residence permit, or
    • an ELSTER certificate.
  • Fill out the online application. The completed online application will be sent to the Family Benefits Office.
  • When applying for child benefit from birth and for children upon reaching the age of majority, additional evidence can be uploaded and sent to the family benefits office.

For an analogue application:

If you do not wish to apply electronically, you must apply for child benefit in writing. To do this, you can have the application completed online sent to you for signature or print out the form yourself. Please send the signed application by post to your local family benefits office.

  • Go to the website of the Family Benefit Office of the Federal Employment Agency, call up the online application and fill it out accordingly.
  • Print out the completed application form or have it printed out and sent to you via the Family Benefits Office.
  • You can also print the application form directly and fill it out by hand.
  • Please use the forms for your application, which you can obtain from your responsible family benefits office or on the website of the Federal Employment Agency.
  • Send the signed application by post to the family benefits office responsible for you.
  • The Family Benefits Office will inform you by post whether you are entitled to child benefit.
  • If your application has been approved, the Family Benefits Office will pay you child benefit on a monthly basis.
  • If you work in the public sector or receive a pension, you may receive child benefit from your employer or employer, unless the employer has waived its special jurisdiction. In this case, you must also submit the application to your employer or employer.

You must inform your family benefits office immediately if there is a change in your family benefit that could affect your child benefit (e.g. child drops out of school, you or another parent takes up gainful employment abroad).

Who should I contact?

You can find the family benefits office responsible for you via the service finder on the website of the Family Benefits Office of the Federal Employment Agency.

If you work in the public sector and your employer or employer has not yet waived its special responsibilities, please contact the department of your employer or employer responsible for your child benefit.

Competent authority

You can find the family benefits office responsible for you via the service finder on the website of the Family Benefits Office of the Federal Employment Agency.

If you work in the public sector and your employer or employer has not yet waived its special responsibilities, please contact the department of your employer or employer responsible for your child benefit.

Requirements

Requirements that apply to you as a parent:

  • You are subject to unlimited income tax liability in Germany or are assessed as such. This also applies to nationals of the EU, the EEA or Switzerland. Residence in Germany is not mandatory.
  • For EU or EEA nationals who move to Germany from August 2019 onwards, further requirements apply. From the 4th month of entry, the requirements of the Freedom of Movement Act must be met. EU citizens have the right to free movement if they:
    • are self-employed or employed
    • are unemployed or involuntarily unemployed
    • derive their right to freedom of movement from a family member
    • have sufficient resources and adequate health insurance coverage, or
    • have acquired a right of permanent residence.
  • Although you are not a citizen of the EU, the EEA or Switzerland, you have a valid permanent residence permit or a certain other residence permit that entitles you to pursue gainful employment or
  • You are a legally recognised refugee or entitled to asylum.

Requirements that apply to your child:

  • Your child must have his/her domicile or habitual residence in Germany or in another EU or EEA state or Switzerland.
  • You may also be entitled to child benefit if your child lives in a household in the EU, the EEA or Switzerland, but for example you or the other parent is subject to unlimited income tax liability in Germany or is assessed as such.

Which documents are required?

  • The tax identification number of the child(ren),
  • the tax identification number of the parent applying for child benefit, and
  • possibly additional documents (e.g. proof of the child's school/vocational training, severely disabled person's pass).

What are the fees?

None

What deadlines do I have to pay attention to?

There is no deadline. Note: Once the application has been received, child benefit will be paid retroactively for a maximum of the last six months.

Applications / forms

Forms available: Yes
Written form required: Yes
Informal application possible: Yes
Personal appearance required: No
Online services available: Yes

Appeal

  • Objection

What else should I know?

The responsible family benefits office will check at certain intervals whether you still meet the requirements for entitlement to child benefit.

Technically approved by

Family benefits office of the Federal Employment Agency

Professionally released on

28.11.2022

Author

The text was automatically translated based on the German content.

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