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Child Benefits for Unregistered Adult Child Looking for Work

Under certain conditions, parents of adult children are entitled to child benefits. In this case, the problem is when this child is looking for work and the Labor Office deletes this child from the list of persons searching vocational training. The Federal Tax Court gave some clarification on June 19, 2008 (re III R 66/05 and III R 68/05).


In the two virtually identically reported cases, the parents wanted to collect child benefits for their adult child, who had finished school, but were not yet 25, not yet started an apprenticeship, not registered at the Labor Agency as searching for training (§§62 I, 63 I cl. 2 ICW §32 IV cl. 2 no. 6 EStG). The child did not have legitimate reasons for not pursuing an offer. Therefore, this child was taken from the list of searching persons looking for training ("lehrstellensuchend gemeldet"). Due to procedural note, the family benefits office was informed of this change in status. Due to the status change, the office for distributing the child benefits cancelled the benefits. The child has the duty to participate in these proceedings (§38 SGB III). In spite of the parents contesting the decision, the office denied continue paying. Only after the son registered as seeking vocational education, did the office resume paying. Since the office did not change its opinion, the parents went to court.

The court dismissed the case. An adult employed child, not yet having turned 25, will meet the requirements for child benefits only when it is registered at the Labor Agency as seeking education (§38 IV cl. 2 SGB III). Even when no training job can be found, the Labor Agency may delete this person's entry from its list. Of course, as is expected, the child can reapply every three months in order for the Agency to seek a matching vocational job for him. Following ruling case law of the Federal Tax Court, reporting only once at the Agency does not suffice. Once the child is deregistered, it does not meet the requirements for child benefits again. Proof of a child being registered for a vocational training is the registration slip of the competent domestic Labor Agency. The family benefits office needs to show no more.