Germany: Students to Receive €200 Energy Relief Payout
The long-awaited €200 energy relief payout for students will begin on March 15th. The energy subsidy promised by the federal government is set to help students meet the high gas & energy prices in Germany. Around 3.5 million people will benefit from this one-off payment.
On the 15th of February, the status of the payment was updated in an official press release. It said that the €200 energy relief payout to students will start its application process a month from now. The exact given date is 15 March. The German Federal of Ministry Education & Research, BMBF, will finish setting up the online application system by then. However, the website is already operational.
Many students affected by inflation will benefit from the €200 energy relief payout. Correspondingly, their living circumstances will also improve. The anticipation is rising as the benefits promised in November, four months ago, are yet to be realized.
Who are qualified?
All students, including vocational students, enrolled in German higher education institutions on 1 December 2022 are qualified for the €200 energy relief payout. Further, students pursuing their doctorate, international students with a residence permit, part-timers & students in dual study programs are also qualified.
How to apply?
- Set up your BundID account. Other identity proofs of either the Online ID or the ELSTER certificate will also be required.
- Applicants will receive an automated access code.
- Fill out the application, which will be available from March 15th. It is advised to have the personal IBAN account details on hand.
- If the application is approved & the details are correct, the funds will be deposited into the applicant’s account. Applicants will also receive an email confirming the application’s approval.
Delays in the Payment
The law regarding the three relief packages to support the population of Germany had passed on 21 December 2022. The packages included a heating cost subsidy, a citizen’s allowance, and electricity & gas subsidies, among other things. However, students were not a part of the package initially. This will be changed on March 15th.
As of now, only the application date has been announced. The Deutsches Studierendenwerk, that is, the German Student Union, is therefore requesting more clarity from the federal & state governments. In light of the rising gas & electricity prices, CEO Matthias Anbuhl stressed that it is important for politicians to keep their promises. The other option is to lose the student’s trust. “The federal and state governments have to deliver now,” said Anbuhl to the daily newspaper, Stuttgarter Zeitung, on 3 February.
Problems with Implementation
Although the payments for other relief packages have started, this €200 energy relief payout has some complications. For starters, there is no comprehensive database that has the records of all of the students. Because of this, a website had to be set up as a joint effort of both the federal & state governments. Another problem is that the application is only available online. Since the General Data Protection Regulation requires an analogous method, activists are criticizing this.
To conclude, students are most certainly looking forward to this €200 energy relief payout. But it may take a few months yet.