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A maintenance advance (Unterhaltsvorschuss) is provided if your child is not receiving maintenance payments. It is paid until the child’s 18th birthday at the latest. The monthly advance is 177 euros per month for children up to the age of 5 and 236 euros for children aged 6 to 11. The single parent’s income is irrelevant in this context.
Children aged 12 to 17 are entitled to a maintenance advance if they are not dependent on benefits under Book II of the Social Code, or you as a single parent have gross monthly earnings of at least 600 euros while receiving such benefits. If these conditions are met, you will receive a monthly maintenance advance of 314 euros.
Applications for a maintenance advance must be submitted in writing, normally to the local youth welfare office (Jugendamt). In certain circumstances, children who are foreign nationals can also receive a maintenance advance.
Further detailed information on the individual benefits and assistance available can be found on the website of the Federal Ministry for Family Affairs and the Familienportal. You can also use the online tool provided by the Federal Ministry for Family Affairs. This allows you to enter a few details and find out which family benefits you may be eligible to receive.