The German government has recently approved the extension of simplified access to the basic social security (Grundsicherungssystemen) and the extension of the law on the implementation of social service providers (Sozialdienstleister-Einsatzgesetz -SodEG) until 31 March 2021.
The Federal Minister of Labour and Social Affairs, Hubertus Heil, explained that: this decision was taken to protect and support citizens in the best possible way. The extension of SodEG for social service providers was necessary in order to help them in case of new work restrictions because of the Covid-19. In this way the German government intends to safeguard its social infrastructure.
The exemplified access to basic security systems came into force in March 2020. After completing the application, for example, the Asset Audit is suspended for approximately 6 months from the date of approval of the request and the costs of accommodation and heating are fully recognized. Self-employed workers can also receive these benefits following the exemplified procedure.
In the event of school closures, however, the special rules for the students lunch as part of the educational package will also be extended. You will continue to work even if you cannot have lunch together and in this case also the delivery costs will be reimbursed.
Ensuring the social infrastructure through the law on the implementation of social service providers (Sozialdienstleister-Einsatzgesetz -SodEG)
Social service providers receive financial subsidies through SodEG if they are no longer able to do their work due to the current situation. In return, if necessary, they will have to provide support (in terms of labour and material resources) to cope with the effects of the pandemic on the territory. This law applies to all companies that provide their services on the basis of the Social Code (with the exception of SGB V and SGB XI) such as: rehabilitation clinics, rehabilitation centers, care for the disabled or early intervention centers (Frühförderstellen), and so on.
It is true that now almost all social service providers have started their work again and continue to do it in accordance with hygiene standards. However, current federal and local decisions show that local and national isolation can no longer be ruled out. Without SodEG, the social infrastructure would again be threatened in its existence if the facilities were to remain closed for a longer period.
The extension until March 2021 introduced further changes whereby only those who are actually affected by measures under Article 5 of the Infection Protection Act are eligible for subsidies. In future, the calculation of the subsidy will be designed in such a way that the months with income deficits due to the pandemic are not taken into account. Previous subsidies will be settled in a separate reimbursement procedure.
Adjustment of control requirement levels from 2021 onwards
In accordance with the legal requirements of Book Twelfth of the Social Code, the Federal Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs has recalculated the levels of standard requirements. According to this, these requirements must be recalculated when the results of a new sample of income and consumption (EVS) are available.
Therefore, as of 1 January 2021, the monthly standard levels for subsistence requirements (Lebensunterhalt), for basic old-age and reduced earning capacity in accordance with SGB XII and for standard requirements in basic pension provision for jobseekers in accordance with SGB II will be changed. As a result of the adjustment from 2021 onwards, an increase of 1.4 billion Euros in the basic security budget is planned.