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Have you become a mother or father? Then you are probably entitled to parental allowance. On this page you will find a lot of information and forms on the subject of parental allowance.

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Parental allowance is a benefit for parents of infants and young children. It replaces part of the lost income if you want to be there for your child after the birth and interrupt or limit your professional work. It is not paid for calendar months, but for months of the child's life. The first month of life begins on the day of birth. Parental allowance is also available for parents who had no income before the birth.

There are three types of parental allowance:

  1. Basic parental allowance
  2. Parental allowance plus
  3. Partnership bonus

Parental allowance plus and the partnership bonus provide special support if you share the work and family responsibilities after the birth. You can also apply for the various options if you are a single parent. Parental allowance is also available for adopted children and children in adoptive care.

As parents, you can decide for yourself who will claim the parental allowance and for which period. In the application, you must specify for which months of your child's life you would like to claim parental allowance and which parental allowance variant you choose.

Parental allowance can be claimed from the day of the child's birth until the child reaches 14 months of age.
Parents of particularly prematurely born children receive additional parental allowance months for births after 01.09.2021. Depending on how early the child is born, parents will receive parental allowance for up to four months longer:

  • Born at least 6 weeks before the calculated date = 1 additional month of basic parental allowance.
  • Born at least 8 weeks before the calculated date = 2 additional months of basic parental allowance
  • Born at least 12 weeks before the calculated date = 3 additional months of basic parental allowance
  • Born at least 16 weeks before the calculated date = 4 additional months of basic parental allowance

The additional basic parental allowance months can also be converted into parental allowance plus months. You can find more information on this under the heading "Frequently asked questions".

The amount of the parental allowance is calculated individually. The calculation is based on the income you had before the birth and which ceases after the birth. If you had no income at all before the birth or if no income ceases after the birth, you will receive a minimum amount. In the case of the basic parental allowance, this is at least 300.00 EUR per month.

If there are additional children living in the household, a sibling bonus is paid under certain conditions. In the case of a multiple birth, the entitlement increases by 300.00 EUR; the sibling bonus is no longer available in this case. You can find more information on the calculation of parental allowance under "Further information" - "Where can I find out more" - "Parental allowance - calculation".

Tip: As an aid to planning and calculation, you can use the parental allowance calculator of the Federal Ministry of Family Affairs. You can find the link for the parental allowance calculator under "Further information" - "Where can I find out more".


Parental allowance is claimed for months of the child's life. In principle, the eligibility requirements must be met in each of the months applied for from the beginning.

You can receive parental allowance if you meet the following requirements:

  • You care for and raise your child yourself.
  • You have a residence in Germany or usually stay here.
  • You live with your child in a joint household.
  • For births before 01.09.2021: You are not employed for more than 30 hours a week.
  • For births after 01.09.2021: You are not employed for more than 32 hours a week.
  • There are several peculiarities in the limit of 32 hours per week, for example, if you are on vacation or if you are studying or training.
  • Your taxable income did not exceed 250,000 euros. For parent couples, the limit is usually EUR 300,000.

Exceptions in the case of foreign employment, especially secondments, should be noted.

Spouses or partners who take care of the child after birth - even if it is not their own - can receive parental allowance under the same conditions.

What documents do I need?

  • Application form
  • Certificate of birth
    • with the purpose of use "to apply for parental allowance", in the case of multiple births for each child.
  • Copy of the residence permit
  • Evidence of the particularly early birth
    • by a medical certificate or a certificate from a midwife or maternity nurse.
  • Certificate of employment
  • Certificate of maternity pay, statement from the employer for the calculation of the maternity pay supplement from the health insurance company
  • Salary statements
    • if the mother is not self-employed: from the 14 months before the birth
    • in the case of the father's employment: from the 12 months preceding the birth

    The statements of account may also be submitted as copies.

  • Proof of income for self-employment
    • In the case of self-employment, the tax assessment notice for the year before the birth of the child serves as proof of income. In the case of loss of income in this assessment period (e.g. pregnancy-related illnesses), the previous assessment period will be taken as a basis upon application.
    • If compulsory social security contributions are paid, proof of this is also required. A declaration on the continuation of the activity in the reference period is also required. If the activity is shut down/restricted, a replacement is hired, existing staff takes on additional tasks, etc.. If necessary, an estimate of the expected income in the reference period is also necessary. After the end of the reference period, the final calculation of the amount of entitlement is made.
  • Proof of mixed income (income from self-employment and employment)
    • If there is income from non-self-employed and self-employed activities in the 12 months before birth or in the year before birth, the income from both activities from the calendar year before the year of birth is used.
  • Depending on your individual situation, further documents may be required. You will find further information in the application documents.