Parents are entitled to family allowance for their studying children if they are Austrian citizens residing in Austria or if they are foreign citizens legally residing in Austria according to the Niederlassungs- und Aufenthaltsgesetz (§ 8 and § 9 NAG). The office at the place of residence of the entitled parents or legal guardians is responsible for the payment of the allowance. The legal basis for the family allowance can be found in the Familienlastenausgleichsgesetz (FLAG).
Anyone who receives a similar foreign allowance is not entitled to family allowance. Austrian citizens receive a compensation payment if the foreign allowance is lower than the family allowance.
Furthermore, entitlement to family allowance exists only if the child also belongs to the household of the person entitled to bring up the child who is claiming family allowance. If the child does not belong to the household of this person, he/she is only entitled to family allowance if he/she mainly provides child support for the child and no other person is entitled to family allowance for the child. If the child lives in secondary accommodation at the place of study, the household affiliation shall not be deemed cancelled.
The age limit for receiving family allowance is generally the 24th birthday. However, this limit can be extended by one year if:
- military service, training or civilian service has been completed.
- a voluntary social year has been completed (continuously for at least 8 months with a non-profit organization of independent welfare with an assignment in Austria).
- a physical/psychological disability exists (at least 50%).
- pregnancy/birth of a child (before or on the 24th birthday).
- the legal duration of studies is 10 semesters (or more) and the studies were started in the calendar year in which the 19th birthday was reached.
However, the prerequisite for receiving family allowance is always that you continue to study (i.e. complete vocational training).
Tip: If you no longer receive the family allowance due to your age, we recommend that you apply for a study aid. Since the family allowance is deducted when calculating the study allowance, you may be entitled to a study allowance. Provided that you also meet all the other criteria for receiving the study grant.
Bachelor studies: minimum period of study + 2 tolerance semesters (6 + 2 semesters).
Master studies: minimum period of study + 2 tolerance semesters (4 + 2 semesters)
Diploma studies: minimum period of study + 1 tolerance semester per section.
This entitlement period can be extended in the case of unforeseen reasons (such as accident, serious illness). Furthermore, there is a possibility of extension if semesters abroad (at least 3 months) have been completed. Maternity leave, care and upbringing of one's own child inhibit the course of studies until the second birthday of the child, if an admission or continuation registration for studies is available. Periods as a student representative also inhibit the study period. Due to an unavoidable reason in the field of study, which leads to an individual delay in studies, an extension semester can also be claimed in individual cases.
Please note: These reasons can only lead to an extension of the entitlement period if they occurred before the expiry of the "regular" entitlement period. The age limit (24 or 25) applies absolutely!
Proof of achievement:
In order not to lose the entitlement to family allowance, the office must be notified after the first year of study (i.e. after the first two semesters) of
- a study achievement of at least 16 ECTS credits (or 8 semester hours per week) from compulsory and elective subjects or
- a partial examination of the first diploma examination (the first rigorosum examination) or
- a performance record of at least 14 ECTS credits from examinations of the Study Induction and Orientation Phase (STEOP)
must be proven.
Please note: You must also be able to prove to the office that you are seriously and purposefully studying throughout the entire duration of your studies.
Due to the new UG-Novelle, you may have to prove 16 ECTS or 8 Swst to the office every year.
If you are unable to provide the required proof of studies, the family allowance will not be granted again until you have provided the proof of studies again. In this case, the hours from the previous academic year can no longer be used.
In the case of impaired students, the serious and purposeful pursuit of studies must be assessed on an individual basis. The eight-semester credit requirement and compliance with the statutory minimum period of study do not apply in this case.
If you are pursuing several studies, you must commit to one study that will become your main study. In the future, your family allowance will only depend on the progress and performance of this study program. Changing to one of the other studies is generally considered a change of studies and is subject to the following rules:
Change of studies:
You may change your studies a total of two times during your period of study. Please note that the change of study must take place at the latest during the admission period of the third semester, so that you do not lose your entitlement to family allowance! If you change your studies later, you will not receive family allowance for as many semesters as you received family allowance in the studies you pursued before the change. This waiting period can be shortened by crediting exams from the old studies in the new studies. It is not considered a change of studies if the entire previous study periods are credited for the studies now pursued. However, this shortens the permissible duration of study in the new degree program.
After completion of a degree program:
If you have already completed a course of study, you can receive family allowance for a second course of study - in contrast to the study allowance - as long as you meet all other requirements regarding age limit and performance.
Additional earnings limit:
The income limit for receiving family allowance is EUR 15,000 per year for students (= annual gross income minus social security amounts, income-related expenses, special expenses and extraordinary burdens). If you exceed the EUR 15,000 limit, the difference between your actual income and the earnings limit must be paid back to the office. Apprenticeship compensation, orphans' pensions and orphans' allowances do not increase your income.
Application for family allowance:
The applicant's tax office of residence is responsible. This is usually your parents or legal guardians.
Attention: All information that may affect the receipt of family allowance (e.g. change of studies, exceeding the earnings limit, etc.), as well as changes of name or address must be reported to the responsible office within one month.
Since September 2013 the family allowance can also be paid directly to you - as a student. However, this requires the consent of the eligible parent or guardian and an application for direct payment to the competent tax office. The office decides on the application with an official notice, therefore, in the case of a refusal, an appeal is also possible.
But beware: parents lose their entitlement to the child deduction if the child applies for family allowance itself!Contact: The office of the parents' or beneficiary's place of residence is responsible.
Status: October 2022