To ensure that single parents are able to provide for their children, the Maintenance Advance Act (Unterhaltsvorschussgesetz) stipulates that a minimum level of child maintenance, minus child benefit (Kindergeld) for the first child, will be paid from public funds where children receive no maintenance or irregular maintenance from the other parent.
Maintenance advance (Unterhaltsvorschuss) is available for children up to 12 years old, and is paid for a maximum of 72 months. The amount paid is the standard rate of maintenance (as stipulated in Section 1612a (1) of the German Civil Code (BGB) minus the child-benefit (Kindergeld) for the first child.
Accordingly, the monthly maintenance advance as of 1 January 2010 is as follows:
- For children aged under 6 years: €133
- For children aged 6 to 11 inclusive: €180
The monthly maintenance advance increased on January 2017 to:
- For children aged under 6 years: €150
- For children aged 6 to 11 inclusive: €201
From July 2017, children above 12 will also be allowed to apply for the monthly maintenance advance, which is set to start at €268 for children aged between 12 and 17.
Important: You are barred from claiming maintenance advance as a single parent if you fail to give information about the other parent, or fail to help identify the father or locate the other parent. This continues to apply if you still live with the other parent or if you remarry