Debate about Spahn statements : What Hartz IV recipients really get
Duesseldorf CDU politician Jens Spahn says that as a Hartz IV recipient you are not poor in Germany. Is he right? And how much money do you get from the state?? Here are all the facts about unemployment benefit II.
By Hendrik Gaasterland
How much is Hartz IV 2018?
Hartz IV is the basic support for people who are capable of working and is the colloquial term for unemployment benefit II (Alg II). Responsible in the cities are either the job centers of the Federal Employment Agency or the social welfare offices.
The standard requirement is increased every year to 1. The allowance was adjusted on January 1 and is intended to cover the costs of food, clothing, personal hygiene, household goods and the needs of daily life.
The rate for single persons is 416 euros per month. The amount for couples is 374 euros per partner. For children, 240 euros are paid until their sixth birthday. The rate for children aged 7 to 14 is 296 euros, and young people under 18 get 316 euros.
Adults under the age of 25 who live in their parents’ household and do not work receive 327 euros. This rate also applies to adult disabled persons in inpatient facilities.
Who can apply for Hartz IV?
Alg II can be received by people who can work at least three hours a day, are at least 15 years old and have not yet reached the statutory retirement age. In addition, they must live in Germany, their livelihood (and that of their family) can not or not sufficiently secure themselves.
Those who are unable to work three hours a day, for example, due to illness are not entitled to Alg II. However, they can apply for social benefits. The same applies if the statutory retirement age has already been reached.
Who pays the rent with Hartz IV?
If the cost of rent is "reasonable they are covered. What is reasonable depends on the respective local benchmarks. Example: In large cities such as Cologne or Dusseldorf, where rents are higher, higher costs are also covered than in rural areas.
For single people, an adequate apartment should not be larger than 45 to 50 square meters. For two persons 60 square meters are considered adequate. For each additional person 15 square meters are to be included additionally.
Who gets support for the apartment, may use the money only for the rent. If the expenses are unreasonably high, either the costs for the accommodation must be reduced, for example the ancillary costs, or one must move to a cheaper apartment.
What one-time assistance is available?
On application, the authorities can approve assistance – for the initial furnishing of an apartment (including household appliances), for an initial supply of clothing or for the initial furnishing in the event of pregnancy and birth of a child. Application and travel expenses as well as the costs of moving to a new job can also be covered.
What benefits are there for education of the children?
For children, adolescents and young adults, an additional subsidy can be applied for with the so-called education package, in order to enable school trips and school excursions. As a rule, students receive 100 euros per year for personal school supplies.
Tutoring can be granted if the school confirms the need and no comparable school offers exist. If schools, after-school care centers or daycare centers offer lunch, a subsidy for lunch can be approved. The parents’ own contribution is one euro per day.
Children and young people under the age of 18 also receive a budget of ten euros per month for club, cultural or leisure activities. Pupils who cannot reach the nearest secondary school on foot or by bicycle usually receive a subsidy for their travel costs.
What about health insurance?
Who receives Alg II, is in principle health insured. The authorities pay the contributions directly to the health insurance fund. Spouses or registered partners and children are also insured.
Who pays for the renovation or larger purchases?
The assumption of renovation costs is handled differently. The job center decides whether renovation is necessary at all. Here it also depends on the regulations in the rental contract.
If you need a new washing machine or a new refrigerator, you should pay for it yourself if possible. In an emergency, the job center can grant a loan that must be repaid. In addition, monthly instalments of ten percent are withheld in the following months.
How high is the asset allowance with Hartz IV?
Money in savings books, daily or fixed deposit accounts is counted towards unemployment benefit II. You have to live on your assets until they have shrunk to the tax-free amount. The allowance is 150 euros per age of the adult in need of assistance (minimum 3100 euros, maximum 9750 euros). For a 30 year old it would be 4500 Euro.
How many Hartz IV recipients there are in Germany?
In 2017, an average of 4.363.102 people Unemployment benefit II. But: According to the Federal Employment Agency, only 41 percent of employable recipients of unemployment benefit II were included in the unemployment statistics in 2016. The rest were missing in the statistics for various reasons, for example, participants in support measures or Aufstocker. Aufstocker work at least 15 hours a week, but get in addition Alg II, because the income for living is not enough. You are not considered unemployed.
When is Hartz IV transferred?
Basic security benefits are paid monthly in advance, usually one day before the month of entitlement.