Parental allowance

This benefit – called “Elterngeld” in German – is paid to the parent who is on parental leave – called “Elternzeit” in German – at the moment. That means the person is not working or works only in part time currently. There are other forms of parental allowance if the parents working half-time or the parental leave is split up.

The parental allowance supports parents in case of loss of earnings due to upbringing. The amount of the benefit depends on the duration of the payment – so on the parental leave – and on the income earned within 12 months before the child was born.

Parents without employment receive parental allowance independent of their income. The period is either one or two years. If it is one year, 300,- € will be paid by month, if it is two years it will be 150,- €.


You can apply successfully if you fulfil following pre-conditions:

  • you as a mother or father care for your child and raise it on your own,

  • your place of residence is in Germany or you stay here “usually”,

  • you live with your child together in one household,

  • you are ether not working at all or not more than 32 hours per week,
    attention: there are some specials concerning the limit of 32 hours of work per week. For instance, if you are studying or doing another qualification. Also, days off and holyday are relevant. Get yourself some advice on this if you are working.

  • If you have more taxable profit than 250.000,- € you can not get parental allowance. If you are a parent’s couple the limit is normally 300.000,- €.

You can submit the application directly after giving birth, as soon as you get the birth certificate of the infant.

There is an online calculator, called “Elterngeld-Schnellrechner” and you can get an idea on how much parental allowance you will approximately get.

>> Elterngeldrechner

You can find the blank form to print and fill out >> here.

If you need help and support, your local parental allowance office, in German “Elterngeldstelle”, can advise you.

We created a Checklist and more information especially for your region. You can find the checklist and the spot to apply for parental allowence in the adress box.