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First students get their €200 energy relief payments in Germany

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The Local ([email protected])
First students get their €200 energy relief payments in Germany
Students at Heidelberg University sit in a lecture hall. Photo: picture alliance / Uwe Anspach/dpa | Uwe Anspach

A full half year after the relief measure was announced, the first bank transfers to students in Germany began on Friday.

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The Federal government’s one-off relief payments to students for rising energy bills and other costs of living increases are finally underway – with around 12,800 applicants having received the first approval notices in a test phase in Saxony-Anhalt.

Although originally promised six months ago, the payments were delayed because student bank details and other identifying information weren’t available centrally, unlike with employee relief payments of €300 paid out last autumn.

Saxony Anhalt's digital ministry enrolled the first students from universities and technical institutes in the state in the test phase, which the federal Education Ministry is using as a model for the German-wide system.

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With Saxony-Anhalt now having reported that their test was successful, the payments will now be rolled out nationwide.

Federal Education Minister Bettina Stark-Watzinger says the pilot phase demonstrated that the payment is easy to apply for online – with the average application taking around three minutes to complete.

The application portal is set to open nationwide on March 15th. Anyone who was enrolled as a student in a university or technical institute in Germany on December 1st, 2022 – whether full or part-time – is eligible, provided they were habitually resident in Germany at the time. Government projections indicate that probably covers around 3.5 million people.

The €200 fee is supposed to be exempt from tax and cannot be calculated as offsetting any other social benefits someone might be entitled to.

READ ALSO: How students can apply for the €200 energy payment in Germany

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