Notfall KiZ: Kinderzuschlag: what is it and who could be eligible for it?
If you ask me, you can learn a lot about a country from the way it handles its crisises. Germany had known several crisises in the past 100 years, the Corona-crisis is definately a challanging one for everyone.
In the attempt to create stability and avoid a chain of non-payments and poverty, Germany had created (or, more accurately to say, is creating) a big umbrella of emergency-regulations which are supposed to financially support its residents. I have already written about other parts of this support- umbrella, such as Soforthilfe2 for freelancers and self-employed people (there are also some videos about this on my FB page) and short-time work benefits.
(This is a nice bike shop in Prenzlauer Berg that I went past last week, they took all the bikes out. This is not really relevant to our topic, but I wanted to post a photo).
Today, I would like to write about children-related assistance. Many families who live in Germany receive child benetifs (Kindergeld). Not everyone have heard about the addition to Kindergeld: Kinderzuschlag, which some families could apply for. This addition (Kinderzuschlag) has always existed in Germany: with an additional support of up to 185 Euros per month, the German government is assisting "families with little income", who already receive children-benefits (Kindergeld), who have unmarried dependent children who live with them and, who earn enough for themselves - but not for their children. In order to receive this additional benefit, one needs to apply for it, and prove that they are meeting the requirements. The government reviews the applicant´s income and assets, calculates their costs of living and decides about their eligibility and amount of aid they receive accordingly.
Since the corona-crisis had severely damaged our economy, many families find themselves in situaitons in which they now meet the requirements for Kinderzuschlag, for example through short-time work (which decreases ones salary), or through loss of contracts and projects as freelancers or self-employed people. Short-time work benefits could be ok for you, if you do not have children, but once children are living in your household - it could get tight. In order to allow those people to also receive Kinderzuschlag, the requirements were adjusted to the emergency (nick-name: Notfall KiZ).
As of now, you can apply for Kinderzuschlag if your income had decreased, providing the government with a proof of income for the last month before your application. So, for example, if you are applying in April 2020, you will need to prove your income only for March 2020 only (so, for the month in which your income decreased). Additionally, your assets will not be reviewed by the government throughout the time of the crisis (excluding exceptions). This way, this benefit was made more accessable to more people. Those emergency regulations are limited until September 30th, 2020.
As you could see, this benefit is supposed to help families get by through the crisis. Please think in a solidary manner and apply for it only if you need it in order to survive throughout this challanging time.