Up to the age of majority of their child, parents are generally entitled to child benefit. However, under certain conditions, parents can still receive child benefit from their family benefits for their adult children, even after their child turns 18. The Entitlement to child benefit for adults but is subject to certain conditions. Below we explain to you the conditions under which the parents of an adult over 18 continue to be entitled to child benefit.
Child benefit entitlement for an unemployed child
Parents receive for an adult child over 18 years continue to receive child benefit from the family fund if the child is unemployed. Another prerequisite for the payment of child benefit is that the unemployed child is registered as a job seeker with the Federal Employment Agency. According to a recent ruling by the Cologne Financial Court (FG Köln, judgment of March 10, 2016, Az. 1 K 560/14), the registration as a job seeker with the Federal Employment Agency is also a mandatory requirement for children who are temporarily unable to work due to an illness for continued entitlement to child benefit. The child benefit for an unemployed child is paid up to the child’s 21st birthday.
Child benefit for studying and training
But even after the child’s 21st birthday, there can still be a child benefit. Because parents can continue to receive child benefit up to their 25th birthday if their adult child is studying or training. In the period in which the child is completing a first degree or initial training, parents have no additional Conditions for child benefit.
After the child has finished schooling, it often takes some time before an apprenticeship is started or a course of study begins. Even during this period, parents do not have to forego child benefit payments despite the child’s legal age. Because the child benefit is paid in the waiting period between two training phases, for example in the period between high school and the start of studies. However, it should be noted that the transition phase between two training phases may not last longer than four months. If the four-month period is exceeded, the parents retroactively lose the child benefit for the entire period.
Restrictions on second or second degree
In the case of a first degree or initial training, the child benefit entitlement applies without restriction until the child’s 25th birthday. With a second degree or a second course after completing initial training, the situation is somewhat different. Whether the parents continue to receive child benefit when their child reaches the age of majority while the child is pursuing a second degree or a second degree depends on whether and how much the child also works. Child benefit payments are stopped if the child works more than 20 hours a week in addition to training or studying. According to the new legal situation, however, the amount of income no longer plays a role in the continuation of the child benefit.
Looking for an apprenticeship or study place
Sometimes, however, the child may not get an apprenticeship or study place immediately after graduation and there may be a longer waiting period. But even while waiting for an apprenticeship or study place, parents of an adult child can continue to receive child benefit. Parents are also entitled to child benefit in accordance with section 32 (4) sentence 1 no. 2 letter c of the Income Tax Act if the adult child is unable to start an apprenticeship or study course due to the lack of a training place or study place. But be careful: During this time, the child must seriously try to find an apprenticeship or study place. Otherwise, the family fund may suspend child benefit payments in accordance with the current case law of the Federal Fiscal Court. This happened to a father in a recent trial before the Federal Fiscal Court (BFH, ruling of August 26, 2014, XI R 14/12), in which the court ruled that the family fund ceased paying child benefit after the daughter got a place at university had refused.
Child benefit payment for study abroad or semester abroad
Today there are many students who either want to spend a semester abroad during their studies or even want to study entirely abroad. Parents usually only receive child benefit for children who are domiciled or habitually resident in Germany. But what happens then? with the Child benefit if the child wants to spend a semester abroad or even complete a study abroad. A single semester abroad is generally not a problem for child benefit entitlement. Since temporary stays abroad of less than one year generally do not lead to the loss of residence in Germany, the child benefit is paid to the parents during a semester abroad.
Things look a little different when studying abroad. In order to continue to receive child benefit when studying abroad, the most important thing is whether the adult child stays in Germany while studying abroad. In a recent trial before the Federal Fiscal Court (BFH, judgment of June 23, 2015, Az.III R 38/14, published on October 28, 2015), the court ruled that the plaintiffs, whose son completed a four-year bachelor’s degree in China , are still entitled to child benefit during this period. It was sufficient for the court that the plaintiff’s son had spent at least half of his free time in Germany in order to remain in Germany.
Child benefit entitlement for a voluntary social year
Nowadays it happens more and more often that young people do not want to start an apprenticeship or study directly after reaching the age of majority, but instead start a voluntary social year. Then need parents nevertheless, do not forego child benefit payments. This is because the law provides that parents of an adult over the age of 18 continue to be entitled to child benefit if their child has a voluntary social year or a voluntary ecological year. In this case too, as with training and study, there is an upper limit of 25 years. If, for example, your child still has a voluntary social year at the age of 28, there is no longer any entitlement to child benefit.
Child benefit for children with disabilities
Normally, child benefit ends when the child turns 25. There is an exception that enables parents to continue receiving child benefit even if their child is already 25 years old. In the case of children with a physical, mental or psychological disability that leads to the child not being able to make a living on their own, the parents are also permanently entitled to child benefit beyond the age of 25 without any further time restrictions , The prerequisite for child benefit entitlement for disabled children is that the disability was determined before the child was 25 years old.
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