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Child benefit

Further education and gainful employment – child benefit.For the payment of child benefit and the tax consideration of adult children under the age of 25, the amount of the child’s income has been irrelevant since 2012. After completion of a first training or study program, the child can still be taken into account if he or she does not work more than 20 hours per week in addition to the training.

Further training can also be qualified as part of the initial training (so-called multiple training); the criterion is whether this is closely related to the previous training (e.g. the same occupational field or technical area) and is carried out in close temporal connection.

In a recent ruling

the Federal Fiscal Court has clarified that job-integrated or job-accompanying practical training or further education, such as a subsequent master’s degree, does not automatically lead to the assumption of uniform initial training. In this regard, it is important to know whether the child’s main activity after obtaining his or her first degree continues to be education or whether the child has already taken up an occupation.

In the opinion of the court, the fact that the employment relationship is concluded for an indefinite period of time or for a period of more than 26 weeks and is aimed at full-time or almost full-time employment can speak in favor of merely in-service training and thus against uniform initial training.

The ruling is relevant for training or further education following a first vocational qualification, in which gainful employment is pursued in addition; whether a uniform initial training is still to be assumed or whether it is already a second training (“child benefit-damaging”) is to be assessed in principle according to the circumstances of the individual case.