Child maintenance in Germany to go up from 2020

Child maintenance in Germany to go up from 2020

The minimum rate of child maintenance for underage children will increase in Germany in the coming year, by up to 21 euros per month. Another increase is also planned for 2021. 

Alimony in Germany to go from 2020

Parents in Germany who are divorced or separated will have to pay more maintenance for their minor children from next year onwards. Depending on the age of the child, the rates for the lowest income group will increase by between 15 and 21 euros per month. 

From 2020 onwards, children under the age of six should receive at least 369 euros per month, and at least 378 euros per month from 2021. Children aged between six and 11 are entitled to 424 euros (434 euros from 2021). For older children aged 12 to 17, the minimum monthly living allowance will be 497 euros in 2020 and 508 euros in 2021. 

Child maintenance in Germany

Children in Germany are always entitled to child support. If the parents live together, the question of who pays maintenance does not arise. If the parents live separately, however, the parent with whom the child lives provides maintenance in the form of room and board. The other parent is required to pay cash - regardless of either parent’s income. 

Single-parent families in Germany have a right to child maintenance payments for as long as the child remains underage or in full-time education. In both cases, however, the child must remain unmarried, as after marriage the maintenance claim is primarily transferred over to the new spouse. 

Maintenance payments in Germany are regulated by law, meaning that child support is fixed from the outset, at a rate determined by both parents. The so-called Düsseldorf Table (Düsseldorfer Tabelle) serves as a guideline. The amount of child maintenance to be paid depends primarily on the salary of the maintenance debtor, as well as the age of the child. 

Note, however, that child benefits in Germany are also counted as part of the child’s “income”, so any parent paying maintenance can deduct half of the child benefit from their payment obligation. Child maintenance payments are also deductible in annual income tax returns, within certain limits. 



Abi Carter

Managing Editor at IamExpat Media. Abi studied German and History at the University of Manchester and has since lived in Berlin, Hamburg and Utrecht, working since 2017 as a writer,...

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