Apply for child benefit
The payment of child benefit does not depend on your income. It amounts to 250.00 euros for each child.
In principle, you are entitled to child benefit from the birth of your child until the 18th birthday. Even after that, you may be entitled to child benefit, but at most until your child's 25th birthday:
- Children between 18 and 21: You will get child benefit if
- your child is not gainfully employed and
- is registered as a job seeker.
- Children between 18 and 25: You will get child benefit if
- Your child is in training (school/job/study),
- Your child is in a transitional period lasting a maximum of four months, for example, between graduation from school and vocational training or a recognized voluntary service,
- your child cannot start or continue his/her training because he/she has not found a training place,
- your child is doing a recognized voluntary service,
- your child has already completed initial vocational training but is still in training, for example, and works no more than 20 hours per week on the side.
If your child has a disability and cannot support himself or herself financially, you are still 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 reason why your child cannot support himself or herself financially.
Child benefit will be 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 the child benefit.
You can find the family benefits office responsible for you using the office 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 responsibility, please contact the department of your employer or employer responsible for your child benefit.
Requirements that apply to you as parents:
- 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. A domestic residence is not mandatory.
- For EU or EEA nationals moving to Germany as of August 2019, additional requirements apply. From the 4th month from entry, the requirements of the Freedom of Movement Act must be met. Citizens of the Union are entitled to freedom of movement if they
- are self-employed or employed
- are job-seeking or involuntarily unemployed
- can derive their right to freedom of movement from a family member
- have sufficient means of subsistence and adequate health insurance coverage, or
- have acquired a permanent right of residence.
- You are not a citizen of the EU, the EEA or Switzerland, but hold a valid settlement permit or a specific other residence title that entitles you to pursue gainful employment, or
- You are a legally recognized refugee or entitled to asylum.
Requirements that apply to your child:
- Your child must be resident or ordinarily resident in Germany or in another EU or EEA country or Switzerland.
- You may also be entitled to child benefit if your child lives in a household in the EU, EEA or Switzerland, but, for example, you or the other parent is subject to unlimited income tax liability in Germany or is so assessed.
You apply for child benefit in writing using the form provided. You also have the option of completing the applications for child benefit from birth and the application for child benefit for children upon reaching the age of majority online. You can upload supporting documents directly. The data will then be transmitted directly to the family benefits office.
For an electronic application with an electronic proof of identity:
- Go to the website of the Family Benefits Office of the Federal Employment Agency and access the online application. For authentication you need either
- the new ID 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.
- For the application for child benefit from birth and for children upon reaching the age of majority, you can additionally upload supporting documents and transmit them to the Family Fund.
For analog application submission:
If you do not wish to use electronic application, you must apply for child benefit in writing. To do this, you can have the completed online application sent to you for signature or print out the form yourself. Please send the signed application by mail to your responsible family benefits office.
- Go to the website of the family benefits office of the Federal Employment Agency, call up the online application and fill it out accordingly.
- Print out the completed application or have it printed out and sent via the family benefits office.
- You can also print out the application form directly and fill it out by hand.
- Please use the forms for your application that you can obtain from your responsible family benefits office or on the website of the Federal Employment Agency.
- Send the signed application by mail to the family benefits office responsible for you.
- The family benefits office will inform you by mail whether you are entitled to child benefits.
- If your application is approved, the Familienkasse will pay you the child benefit each month.
- If you work in the public sector or receive pension benefits, you may receive the child benefit from your employer or employer's employer, unless the employer has waived its special responsibility. In this case, you must also submit the application to your employer.
You must notify your family benefits office immediately if there is any change in your circumstances that could affect child benefits (for example, your child drops out of school, you or another parent take up employment abroad).
There is no time limit. Note: After receipt of the application, the child benefit will be paid retroactively for the last six months at the most.
- The tax identification number of the child or children,
- the tax identification number of the parent claiming the child benefit, and
- any additional documents (for example, proof of the child's school/vocational training, severely disabled ID).
The responsible family benefits office checks at certain intervals whether you still meet the requirements for child benefit entitlement.
Family Fund of the Federal Employment Agency