Proportion of fathers receiving Germany's parental allowance rises once again

Proportion of fathers receiving Germany's parental allowance rises once again

The proportion of fathers taking advantage of the parental allowance in Germany rose slightly last year, so that men made up just under a quarter of all recipients. Overall, however, the total number of people claiming the state benefit dipped slightly. 

Fathers now make up nearly a quarter of parental allowance recipients

More fathers are apparently taking time off work to look after their children. At least, that’s what is suggested by new figures from the Federal Statistical Office (Destatis), which show that the proportion of fathers among those receiving the parental allowance rose slightly in 2020. Back in 2015, fathers made up just 20,9 percent of all recipients. In 2020, this climbed from 24,4 percent to 24,8 percent. 

The figure indicates what proportion of parental allowance payments goes to male recipients. If both the mother and father of all children were to take the parental allowance, it would be exactly 50 percent. 

In 2020, a total of 1,4 million women and 462.000 men received the social security benefit - around 4.000 (0,2 percent) fewer than in 2019. However, the reduction was not equally spread: the number of men receiving the allowance actually rose by 6.500 (+1,4 percent), while the number of female recipients fell by 10.500 (-0,7 percent). In 2018, 433.000 fathers received the benefit

Saxony has the highest proportion of male recipients

Destatis found considerable regional differences in how likely men were to apply for the allowance. The frontrunner is Saxony, where 30 percent of fathers claimed it in 2020, followed by Bavaria and Berlin with 27,2 percent each. The lowest proportions of male recipients in 2020 were to be found in Saarland (19,1 percent) and Bremen (20,7 percent). 

The figures also show that little has changed in terms of the average length of time for which men and women receive the allowance. Women take an average of 14,5 months, while men take an average of 3,7 months. These figures have remained relatively static in recent years. 

However, the so-called Elterngeld Plus scheme - which allows parents to continue to receive the allowance over a longer period, while working part-time hours - is becoming increasingly popular. 34,7 percent of eligible women and 14,2 percent of men now make use of the Plus option, a total of 552.000 recipients. 



Abi Carter

Abi studied History & German at the University of Manchester. She has since worked as a writer, editor and content marketeer, but still has a soft spot for museums, castles...

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