Number of fathers receiving Elterngeld in Germany continues to rise

Number of fathers receiving Elterngeld in Germany continues to rise

An increasing number of fathers in Germany are choosing to take parental allowance, a social security benefit designed to encourage new parents to take time off work after the birth of a child.

More new fathers are taking parental allowance in Germany

According to Destatis, the number of men who received parental allowance (Elterngeld) in 2022 was up by 10.000, a 2,1 percent increase compared to the previous year.

In 2022 1,4 million women and 482.000 men in Germany took parental allowance. But compared to increases among men, the number of women taking Elterngeld fell by 32.800 (-2,3 percent). This discrepancy between mothers and fathers means that the trend of an increasing number of fathers taking Elterngeld is continuing. 

Though more men are taking Elterngeld, on average women in Germany still receive the benefit for a significantly longer period than men; 14,6 months in comparison to just 3,6 months.

Men in Saxony most likely to receive Elterngeld

Across the federal states, it is fathers in Saxony who are most likely to receive parental allowance, with 30,2 percent of fathers taking the funds compared to a nationwide average of 26,1 percent. Thuringia and Bavaria followed, where, respectively  28,4 and 38,3 percent of fathers made use of the benefit. Saarland is the state where the lowest percentage of fathers applied for the money, just 20,8 percent.

More new fathers are also taking advantage of Elterngeld Plus. Elterngeld Plus allows any parent eligible for parental allowance to spread the benefit payments over a longer period of time, by receiving half of the regular parental allowance over a maximum period of 24 months. When the scheme was introduced in 2016, just 8,2 percent of new dads received it. By 2022, this figure had risen to 16,1 percent.

Thumb image credit: Kvitka Nastroyu /

Olivia Logan


Olivia Logan

Editor for Germany at IamExpat Media. Olivia first came to Germany in 2013 to work as an Au Pair. Since studying English Literature and German in Scotland, Freiburg and Berlin...

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