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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 babies and small 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 at all before the birth.

There are three types of parental allowance:

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

The different variants are explained in more detail under "Frequently asked questions".

Parental Allowance Plus and the partnership bonus provide you with particular support if you share work and family responsibilities as partners after the birth. You can also apply for the different variants if you are a single parent. Parental allowance is also available for adopted children and children in foster care.

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

You can apply for parental allowance from the day the child is born until the child is 18 months old at the latest. Parental allowance is granted retroactively for a maximum of the last 3 months before the month of application. The application period is extended for children born particularly early.

Since 01.04.2024, a new legal regulation applies: The possibility for parents to receive basic parental allowance in parallel is restricted. Simultaneous receipt of basic parental allowance is only possible for births from 01.04.2024 for a maximum of one month and up to the child's 12th month of life.

There are exceptions for parallel receipt in the case of multiple births, children born particularly prematurely, children with disabilities or newborns with siblings with disabilities for whom the parents receive the sibling bonus.

Parallel receipt with Parental Allowance Plus months and Partnership Bonus months is still possible.

Parents of particularly premature children receive additional parental allowance months. Depending on how early the child is born, parents receive up to four months longer parental allowance:

  • Born at least 6 weeks before the expected due date = 1 additional month of basic parental allowance
  • Born at least 8 weeks before the expected date = 2 additional months of basic parental allowance
  • Born at least 12 weeks before the expected due date = 3 additional months of basic parental allowance
  • Born at least 16 weeks before the calculated due 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 parental allowance is calculated individually. The calculation is based on the loss of income after the birth. If you had no income before the birth or no income after the birth, you will receive a minimum amount. For basic parental allowance, this is at least EUR 300.00 per month.

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

Tip: You can use the parental allowance calculator from the Federal Ministry of Family Affairs to help you plan and calculate. You can find the link for the parental allowance calculator under "Further information" - "Where can I find out more".


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

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

  • You look after and bring up your child yourself.
  • You have a place of residence in Germany or usually stay here.
  • You live with your child in a shared household.
  • You do not work more than 32 hours a week.
  • There are several exceptions to the limit of 32 hours per week, for example if you are on vacation or if you are studying or training.
  • Your taxable income in the year before the birth did not exceed the statutory income limit. Due to a change in the law, the income limit will be reduced in the coming months. As a rule, the following income limits apply for the periods mentioned:
    • Births before 01.04.2024: 300,000 for parent couples and 250,000 euros for single parents
    • Births from 01.04.2024 - 31.03.2025: 200,000 euros for couples and single parents
    • Births from 01.04.2025: 175,000 euros for couples and single parents.

Exceptions for foreign employment relationships, in particular secondments, must be observed.

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

What documents do I need?

  • Application form
  • Birth certificate or birth certificate

    with the reference "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 from your employer if you earn income while receiving parental allowance.
  • Certificate of maternity benefits
    • with your declaration of consent on page 16 of the application form, this will be requested digitally from your health insurance fund and you do not need to submit it.
    • Statement from your employer to calculate the maternity allowance from the health insurance fund.
  • Payroll accounting
    • if the mother is not self-employed: from the 14 months prior to the birth
    • if the father is not self-employed: from the 12 months prior to the birth

    Copies of the statements can also be submitted. They will help us and the processing time if they are submitted without gaps and pre-sorted.

  • 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.