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Parental allowance and parental leave

Parental leave

Parental leave is a leave of absence from work for parents who are caring for and raising their child themselves. You do not have to apply for parental allowance to take parental leave.However, no salary is paid out during this leave due to parental leave (unless you also work part-time), which is why parental allowance is usually applied for.

Who can take parental leave?

  • Parental leave (in contrast to parental allowance) is only possible for employees (e. g. not for doctoral students without an employment relationship or scholarship holders). Civil servants can also take parental leave. Parental leave is also available to temporary employees and auxiliary staff.

    Further requirements:

    • The child is being cared for and raised by yourself
    • The child lives in the same household
    • You work between 0 and 32 hours per week

How can I register my parental leave and what deadlines must be observed?

  • Parental leave must be notified informally in writing to the responsible personnel officer in the Human Resources department. Up to the child's third birthday, parental leave must be registered at least seven weeks before it begins. Between the child's third and eighth birthday, parental leave must be registered at least 13 weeks before it begins. An informal notification can be downloaded via the service portal (to be found under Settings/ Academic staff or non-academic staff/ Application forms)

What regulations apply to civil servants?

Civil servants can take parental leave in the same way as employees covered by collective agreements. Further information for civil servants on maternity protection and parental leave can be found on this page of the state of North Rhine-Westphalia summarized. The Human Resources Department is also happy to advise employees individually here.

Further detailed information on the topic of parental leave can be found on the website of the Ministry for Children, Youth, Family, Equality, Refuge and Integration of the State of North Rhine-Westphalia. We also recommend the website of the Federal Ministry for Family Affairs.

Parental allowance

Parental allowance is a compensation benefit for families and is aimed at all parents who care for and raise their child themselves. It compensates for loss of income or loss of earnings if parents work less or not at all after the birth of a child. There are three types of parental allowance: Basic Parental Allowance, Parental Allowance Plus and Partnership Bonus.

Please note: If your child was born before September 1, 2021, different rules may apply to you. Please contact your parental allowance office.

Who receives parental allowance?

Fathers and mothers can receive parental allowance under the following conditions:

  • You look after and bring up your child yourself.
  • You live with your child in the same household.
  • You live (primarily) in Germany.
  • You do not work at all or not more than 32 hours per week.

Foreign parents can also receive parental allowance: If you come from another European Union (EU) country or from Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway or Switzerland, then you can generally receive parental allowance in Germany if you live or work here.

How do I apply for parental allowance?

You can apply for parental allowance at the parental allowance office in your city. In Dortmund, please contact the Supply office.

Please note:

  • You can only apply for parental allowance after the birth of your child.
  • You should submit the application within the first 3 months of your child's life. This is because parental allowance is paid retroactively for a maximum of 3 months.
  • You will need your child's birth certificate and proof of your previous income.

How much parental allowance will I receive?

If you were not employed before the birth of your child, you will receive the minimum amount of parental allowance (€300 per month). However, if you can provide proof of regular net income from the last 12 months, the replacement rate will be paid. This is 65 - 67% of the net income. The basic parental allowance can be drawn for up to 14 months. The Federal Ministry's parental allowance calculator will help you to get a first impression.

Parental AllowancePlus: Parental Allowance Plus can be split over 28 months and is usually around half of the basic parental allowance.

Further information

You can find comprehensive information and explanatory films on the pages of the Family Portal of the Federal Ministry for Family Affairs, Senior Citizens, Women and Youth. You are welcome to make use of this offer. The family benefits information tool also gives you an overview of the benefits to which you are entitled.