Normally the Elterngeld (parental allowance) corresponds to 67% of the net salary of the average income received by the parent in the last 12 months before parental leave and is usually paid in addition to Kindergeld. The amount of parental allowance is at least €300 monthly up to a maximum of € 1800 per month (€ 150 to € 900 per month maximum for Elterngeld Plus). The parent receiving this allowance cannot work more than 30 hours per week. Elterngeld can be paid for a maximum of 14 months, but only if both parents are actively involved in the child’s upbringing and there is a reduction in family income as a result.

As a result of changes, from 2021, parents with an income of more than € 1240 will no longer receive 67%, but 65%.


Compensation percentage
Parents who earn less than 1000€ per month receive a supplement, i.e. a kind of compensation percentage applied to the Elterngeld ranging from 67% up to 100%. In practice: for every €2 of income below €1,000, the Elterngeld percentage rises by 0.1%.

If, for example, a parent earns only 700€ per month, this means that he earns 300€ less than the downward salary limit for Elterngeld, i.e. 1000€. To calculate the compensation percentage we would then use this scheme: 300€/2€ = 150€ à150€ x 0,1% = 15%. The 15% compensation percentage will then be added to the 67%, giving the parent a total amount of Elterngeld equal to 82% of the net salary previously received.


Families with more than one child are entitled to an additional bonus called Geschwisterbonus, which amounts to 10% of the Elterngeld percentage the family receives ( it is never less than 75€ per month for Elterngeld, 37.50€ in case of Elterngeld Plus). Families with twins receive an extra € 300 per newborn child (€ 150 in case of Elterngeld Plus).


Elterngeld for social aid recipients
Parents who receive the parental allowance and at the same time receive ALG II, Sozialhilfe and Kinderzuschlag must be aware that the Elterngeld, even the minimum amount of € 300, will be taken into account as income and will compensate the above-mentioned social benefits.

Parents who receive ALG II, Sozialhilfe and Kinderzuschlag, but who in the 12 months before the birth of the child received a salary from employment, are given an exemption of up to €300. In practice, the Elterngeld up to the amount of € 300 is not counted as income during the calculation of their social benefit amount.


Maximum income threshold
Single parents with an annual income of more than 250,000€ cannot receive Elterngeld, nor can married couples earning more than 500,000€ per year.