Other sources of funds

Here you will find information on other state benefits such as housing allowance, child benefit or unemployment benefit, as some of these can also play a role for students.

Housing benefit

Housing benefit is a government subsidy for housing costs for households with little money.

Students who are entitled to BAföG "on the merits" cannot receive a housing allowance. This also applies if your BAföG application was rejected, for example, because your parents earn too much.

However, students can be entitled to housing allowance if they receive

  • receive BAföG as a full loan, or
  • are not entitled to BAföG for the same reason, for example, because they have exceeded the maximum period of eligibility, have not provided the required certificates of achievement, have changed their field of study, are over the age limit, or are pursuing a second course of education, or
  • live together with persons who are not entitled to BAföG (e.g. child, partner, spouse, parents).

If this applies to you, it is worth taking a look at the following flyer, which we have published together with the Wohngeldstelle der Landeshauptstadt Hannover.

Foreign students who are staying in Germany for the purpose of studying can also receive housing allowance under certain conditions. However, if you have a declaration of commitment , please get advice from our social counseling service!

Housing allowance for students

Child benefit for students

Your parents are entitled to child benefit if you have your residence or habitual abode in Germany.

Your parents will receive child benefit until you turn 25.

In the past, child benefit was paid beyond the age of 25 if your education was delayed due to basic military or civilian service (or correspondingly recognized service, for example in development aid). In this case, child benefit was extended by a maximum of the duration of the basic military or civilian service performed. Federal voluntary service does not result in child benefit being paid for longer because, as the name suggests, it is voluntary.

The monthly child benefit is:

  • 219 euros for the first and second child
  • 225 Euro for the third child
  • 250 euros for each additional child

If you regularly work more than 20 hours a week, you will no longer be entitled to child benefit. This means that your parents will no longer receive child benefit for you.

If you work more than 20 hours a week temporarily - for a maximum of two months - it doesn't matter if your average weekly working time for the entire calendar year is no more than 20 hours.

No, your income is not counted towards your parents' child benefit entitlement.

If you take a semester off, you must declare this to the Employment Agency. During this period, child benefits are only paid under very specific circumstances. Reasons for continued payment can be, for example, illness or mandatory internships. This is decided on a case-by-case basis.

The periods of study for which child benefit is granted also include interruptions due to illness and maternity (maternity leave).

A student can therefore continue to receive child benefit for this period. Even if she takes parental leave from a part-time job but continues her studies, she can still receive child benefit during this time, because the basis for her own child benefit entitlement is that she is still in education.

However, if she takes a semester off herself, she is only entitled to child benefit for herself during this time as long as she is on maternity leave. However, she can also receive child benefit for her child during the semester of leave.

International students only receive child benefits if they also have a residence permit for the purpose of permanent residence.

Unfortunately, those who only have a residence permit for the purpose of studying cannot claim child benefits.

Detailed information on child benefit, age limits and training periods can be found in the leaflet on child benefit from the Federal Central Tax Office (Bundeszentralamt für Steuern).

If you have further questions about child benefit, please contact our social counseling service!

Unemployment benefit

Unemployment benefit I is only available under certain conditions, which only apply to very few students. Therefore, here is only the most important information.

Unemployment benefit can only be received by those who

  • are registered as unemployed,
  • is available to the employment agency,
  • meets the eligibility criteria.

The entitlement to unemployment benefit I is based, among other things, on employment subject to contributions for at least 12 months within two years prior to registration as unemployed.

The following applies until December 31, 2022: For persons with predominantly short temporary employment, there is a shortened entitlement under certain conditions. For this to be the case, they must have worked predominantly on a temporary basis subject to social insurance contributions in the two years prior to becoming unemployed. The employment relationship must not have been limited to more than ten weeks. In addition, the salary in the last twelve months before unemployment must not exceed certain amounts. If this is the case and all other requirements for receiving unemployment benefits are met, the qualifying period is reduced to six months.

Regarding availability: The legislator assumes that unemployed persons who study at a university can only perform jobs that are exempt from social insurance in addition to their education and are thus not available to the employment agency. However, this presumption can be rebutted in individual cases. The standard for the extent of the claim due to the studies are the objective requirements of proper studies, as they result from the examination regulations.

Further information on unemployment benefit I can be obtained from the Agentur für Arbeit Hannover.

If you have further questions, please contact the Social Counseling Service of the Studentenwerk Hannover.

Since unemployment benefit I is an insurance benefit and not a social benefit, foreign students can also claim it if they have previously worked in a job that is fully subject to social insurance and have acquired entitlements in the process. However, this is usually not the case in the context of normal student employment. In cases of doubt, our social counseling service at the Studentenwerk will be happy to help.

In principle, students cannot receive standard benefits according to citizen's benefit or social assistance, since BAföG applies to them.

However, there is an exception with regard to citizen's benefit (but not with regard to social assistance): This applies to all students who are basically entitled to BAföG and still live in the parental home and, under certain conditions, to preparatory course students who do not live in the parental home. In this case, standard benefits and accommodation costs can also be paid in addition if there is a need. This also includes health insurance through the job center.

For all other students, they can only receive additional needs from the Job Center or the Social Welfare Office if they are pregnant or if they are a single parent. However, their children or partners may have their own entitlement to benefits if their income is low.

Important to know for all unemployment benefit II recipients who also receive BAföG: When taking BAföG income into account, study-related costs (for example, the semester contribution) can, if necessary, be claimed as a deduction for income-related expenses from BAföG and thus have a favorable effect on the amount of unemployment benefit II paid out.

Since education is suspended during a semester of leave, full benefit claims for unemployment benefit II or social assistance may exist.

As a rule, foreign students cannot receive unemployment benefit II, as they are not allowed to claim social benefits. However, our social counseling service will be happy to advise you on this if you are in doubt.

Whether you are entitled to unemployment benefit II or social assistance depends on your ability to work for health reasons. This means that anyone who could work at least three hours a day for health reasons, as well as their dependents, receive unemployment benefit II if they are eligible. Those who are incapable of working and their dependents receive corresponding assistance for subsistence from social welfare.

Whether a person is entitled to unemployment benefit II or social assistance depends on the individual case.

Further information on unemployment benefit II can be obtained from the JobCenter Region Hannover.

Questions on the subject of social assistance can be answered by the City of Hanover, Department of Social Affairs.

If you have any further questions on the subject of Alg II / social assistance, you are welcome to contact our social counseling service!

You still have questions? We are happy to help!

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