Can affect a single parent

Single mother: Everything about rights, grants & support

In the last 15 years, the number of single parents in Germany has risen by 50 percent: around 1.5 million mothers are now raising their children without a partner. So every fifth family consists of just one parent.

For a single mother, everyday life is no picnic, as most mums will probably agree. The stressful balancing act between child and job, the decisions regarding upbringing that have to be made alone. The attempt to give the youngsters a stable framework with the right orientation aids, and also the financial needs that need to be met. These challenges determine the life of the power mothers.

But there are a few things that can make life a little easier for single mothers, at least financially. What rights single mothers have, where they can get financial help and which grants they can apply for - we will explain to you!

Single mother: what are my rights?

The rights of a single mother depend on whether she has sole or shared custody. In Germany, 91% of all single parents are women. But in 9 out of 10 divorces, custody remains with both parents.

A single mother who has sole custody can make all decisions regarding the child alone. It's different with shared custody. A distinction is made between matters of daily life that affect the person with whom the child lives and matters of 'considerable importance' that must be dealt with by both parents.

Matters of daily life are those that relate to everyday life - taking care of the child, length of care time, apology in the event of illness or leisure time activities, i.e. those matters that, and this is considered a small memory aid, can easily be picked up again.

If, however, it is a matter of fundamental decisions that have more far-reaching effects, these have 'considerable significance' and require consultation with the other parent. This applies, for example, to the choice of care facility, health decisions such as vaccinations or operations, the right to a name or the question of the style of upbringing.

Financial aid and grants for single parents

Single parent: who pays what maintenance?

If the parents live separately, the child is entitled to maintenance. If the child lives with the mother, she "pays" the maintenance with the care, upbringing and care of the child. The father is therefore obliged to provide maintenance in the form of money, the so-called Cash maintenance, to pay. The amount of cash maintenance depends on the income of the father, the age of the child and the number of dependent persons.

Single parents have the right to Maintenance advanceif the other parent does not pay child support or does not pay enough child support. The maintenance advance for children up to 6 years of age is 152 euros per month, children aged 6 to 12 receive 201 euros per month and children up to 18 years of age receive 268 euros per month. The maintenance allowance must be applied for at the responsible youth welfare office.

Single parent: Who pays special costs such as school trips or tutoring?

In principle, additional costs, the so-called special needs, must be borne by both parents on a pro-rata basis. School trips, treatment costs with the doctor that are not covered by the health insurance, tutoring or all other costs relating to the child that go beyond everyday needs must be paid by the mother and father.

If the parent with whom the child lives earns less than 840 euros net per month, there are no costs for the carer.

Single mother or father: who is entitled to child benefit?

The person with whom the child lives is entitled to child benefit. This means that if the child lives with the mother after the separation, she receives the full amount of child benefit. However, if the father reliably fulfills his maintenance obligations, he can deduct 50% of the child benefit from his maintenance payments.

Who is entitled to the child allowance?

Single parents with a low income (minimum income of 600 euros per month) who do not want to apply for Hartz IV are entitled to child allowance. The child allowance is calculated individually, but is tied to certain income limits and assets.

Who can apply for housing benefit?

Housing benefit is also aimed at single parents with a low income who pay their rent themselves. This means that they are not allowed to receive any other social benefits such as Hartz IV or social assistance in order to apply for housing benefit. The amount of the housing benefit depends, among other things, on the number of people living in the household, the income and the amount of rent and is calculated by the housing benefit authorities.

Single mother: the right tax bracket

Single parents have the right to tax class II, in which the tax relief amount of 1908 euros is taken into account annually. For each additional child, the amount increases by 240 euros. The parent with whom the child lives can apply to the tax office to change to tax class II.

Tip: So far, there have been few tax advantages for single parents. Nevertheless, a single mother can reduce her taxes and, for example, deduct the care costs for her child. This is even possible until the child is 14 years old.

Where do you get support as a single mom?

After a separation, it is often difficult for single mothers to find their way around. It can therefore be of great help to exchange ideas with like-minded people. You get the best advice from people who have experienced and been through something similar. There are often self-help groups in your own town or help on the Internet. Forums are a good platform to exchange ideas with others.

If you don't know what to do first as a single parent, you should contact the youth welfare office, the mothers' convalescence organization or the welfare association. Because at these points you know what offers of help or funding are available in your place of residence.

Being a single parent does not mean that you have to do everything on your own from now on. But on the contrary. It is important to be able to accept the help offered. From childcare to financial support. Only then will you have enough energy to be able to enjoy the time with the children.

Also on

Blended family: These tips make family life more harmonious

Strong Personality: 7 Tips on How to Build Your Child's Confidence

Discover our newsletter!
We have so much to tell you: news, trends, tips and much more.
I register

"How do you not breastfeed?" 5 responses to unwanted parenting tips

420 shared