Childcare Relief for Parents

January 20th, 2021 | by

On January 18, the Federal Council of Germany approved the planned expansion of child sick leave. Thus, working parents will now receive some relief during the coronavirus pandemic in 2021.

Parents who have statutory health insurance will now be able to apply for 20 instead of 10 days of child sick leave (Kinderkrankengeld) per statutorily insured child and parent in 2021 and for a maximum total of 45 days if the parent has more than one child.

The entitlement for single parents increases by 20 days to 40 days per child, with up to a maximum of 90 days if the parent has more than one child. This new regulation applies retroactively from January 5 and applies to children under 12 (exception: children with disabilities).

The entitlement also applies if a child must be cared for at home because schools or daycare centers are closed, compulsory attendance at school has been lifted, or access to daycare services has been restricted. In this case, parents must submit a corresponding certificate from the school or daycare center to their statutory health insurance provider.

Parents can also apply for child sick leave if they could work from home.

If necessary, parents can also apply for wage replacement due to the closure or prohibited access to the daycare center or school in accordance with § 56 of the Infection Protection Act (IFSG). The provisions of Section 56 of the IFSG also apply if the attendance requirement at schools is lifted. Further information can be found here. You can apply for wage replacement due to daycare center and school closures in the document “Lohnersatz wegen Kita- und Schulschließung nach § 56 IfSG” in the Forms Center.

In principle, this option also applies to privately insured employees, but it does not apply to civil servants. For the duration of the receipt of child sick leave, entitlement to wage replacement according to the Infection Protection Act is suspended for both parents.

In addition, RWTH is also offering parents the opportunity to take three coronavirus special leave days in 2021. Employees may be granted these special leave days if they do not have any leave days left from 2020 nor have overtime they can compensate. These special leave days will be granted with the employee’s salary paid as usual. Special leave may be requested by parents of children under the age of 12, or, in the case of children with disabilities, also over 12. In order to take special leave, the employee must have used up their entitlement to child sick leave.

The following rules apply to civil servants:

We assume that comparable regulations on children’s sick pay will be included in the civil service regulations in the short term, so that comparable leave should be possible for civil servants whose income does not exceed the annual earnings limit (2021: €64,350).

Civil servants whose income exceeds the threshold above may only apply for special leave with payment of salary for up to 3 days. The above-mentioned requirements for taking special leave apply accordingly.

Employees and students of RWTH who are looking for a carer for their children in the private sector can continue to use the babysitting network. The requirements of the Corona-Schutzverordnung (Coronavirus Protection Ordinance) of the State of North Rhine-Westphalia must be observed. Students with child(ren) can also take advantage of the childcare allowance if applicable.

Feel free to contact the Family Services Center of the Equal Opportunity Office ( if you have any questions or need advice.

Comments are closed.