Family and children

Higher child benefit: Federal Council gives the green light to families in the billions

Higher child benefit: Federal Council gives the green light for families in the billions.  Child benefit and the child tax allowance will be gradually increased in 2019.

Berlin (dpa) – Good news for many families in Germany: The way for a 9.8 billion euro relief package is finally free. After the Bundestag, the Bundesrat in Berlin also voted for the package, which can therefore come into force in 2019 as planned.

The child benefit will increase by ten euros per child per month from July. For the first and second child there are 204 euros, for the third 210 and for each additional child 235 euros per month.

The tax-free child allowance will also be adjusted – it is to be increased from 7428 to 7620 euros (2019) and then further to 7812 euros (2020). In addition, the basic taxpayer allowance is to increase from 9,000 to 9,168 euros (2019) and 9,408 euros (2020), and the maximum amount for the deduction of maintenance payments is also expected to increase slightly.

However, part of the planned relief is required by law anyway. The basis here is the subsistence level report – this is how, for example, the amount of tax exemptions depends. Part of it is also a repayment of the effects of the “cold progression”, which partially “eats up” income growth due to rising prices due to inflation.

Overall, the “cold progression” is to be reduced in the coming year by 2.2 billion euros, this sum is included in the total relief of 9.8 billion euros for 2019.

Baden-Württemberg’s Minister of Social Affairs Manfred Lucha (Greens) criticized the package: Ironically, the poorest did not benefit – because the increase in child benefit would be fully offset against the Hartz IV basic security. Child benefit and other benefits would have to be further developed towards a subsistence benefit such as a basic child benefit.

Around two million children in Germany are poor and at risk of poverty, said Lucha. “The trend is increasing.” There are children who go to school on an empty stomach and cannot celebrate their birthday or have to find excuses when they are invited because their parents have no money for a gift. “Those who are poor are often poorly nourished and more often ill”.