Apply for BAföG for a course of study

BAföG is the abbreviation for Federal Training Assistance Act. BAföG is the colloquial term for the funding that you can receive under this law. You receive the funding for financing your studies, under certain conditions of a mandatory internship as...

BAföG is the abbreviation for Federal Training Assistance Act. BAföG is the colloquial term for the funding that you can receive under this law.
You receive the funding for financing

  • your studies,
  • under certain conditions of a mandatory internship as part of your studies

In order to receive the monthly grant, you must meet a number of requirements. The most important are:
  • Your parents and/or your spouse or partner have little or no income.
  • You yourself have little or no income, for example from a mini-job.
  • Your assets are below the exempt amount of EUR 8,200 or only slightly above
  • You have German citizenship or an eligible residence permit
  • The university and the course are eligible for BAföG
  • You study full-time
  • age limit: 30 years; in the Master 35 years (exceptions are possible)

The amount of your BAföG is based on a fixed monthly requirement. Money is deducted from this need if your parents, your spouse or partner or you earn a little more.

If you are studying, you will receive half of the funding as a loan and half as a grant. This means that you only have to pay back half of the money after your studies. In principle, you do not pay any interest on the loan (“interest-free loan”). The maximum repayment amount is usually EUR 10,010, regardless of how high the total funding was. This corresponds to 77 monthly installments of EUR 130.00 each from the start of the repayment.

The Federal Office of Administration is responsible for collecting the loan. You only start repaying 5 years after the end of the maximum funding period, which usually corresponds to your standard period of study. If you do not earn enough to absorb the repayment of your loan, you can apply to the Federal Administration Office for a payment extension.

When you study, your monthly needs are made up of different parts:
  • basic needs:
    • EUR 427.00 if you complete your training at a higher technical college, academy or college (e.g. at a university).
  • Accommodation requirements:
    • EUR 56.00 if you live with your parents or
    • EUR 325.00 if you do not live with your parents.
  • If you are unable to obtain health/care insurance through your parents, you will receive an additional EUR 84.00 or EUR 25.00. From the age of 30 a maximum of EUR 155.00 or EUR 34.00.
  • If you have a child who is younger than 14 and lives in your household, you will also receive a childcare allowance: EUR 150.00 for each child.
If you complete a semester or year abroad, you can apply for supplements to travel expenses, tuition fees and international health insurance; for study stays in the EU, stays shorter than six months are also eligible; you can also receive BAföG if you complete your entire degree abroad in the EU; in the case of stays abroad outside the EU/Switzerland, a purchasing power compensation is also granted.

Only internships that you complete while you are in an apprenticeship that is eligible under BAföG can be funded with BAföG.
Compulsory internships are usually funded. These are internships that are prescribed by your study regulations or the training plan, which you must do in order to complete or carry out your studies or training. Mandatory internships completed outside the EU are only eligible if they last at least 12 weeks. Mandatory internships within the EU member states can also be funded if they are shorter than 12 weeks.

A voluntary internship requires a case-by-case assessment.
You can also receive BAföG if you complete your entire degree abroad in the EU.

Important notes


You can receive BAföG if

  • You attend a university, an academy or a higher technical college.
  • If it is a private training facility, it must be state-recognized.
  • you study full-time,
  • You are either German or German or
  • You are a foreigner and for example:
    • have a right of permanent residence or a settlement permit,
    • are Union citizens and are entitled to freedom of movement under Union law as employees or self-employed persons or are entitled to freedom of movement themselves as a child or spouse of such a Union citizen,
    • have the prospect of staying in Germany, for example a corresponding residence permit for family, humanitarian or political reasons, or
    • have already resided in Germany for 5 years or longer before starting the training and have worked during this time.
  • you are younger than at the beginning of your studies
    • 30 years (bachelor's degree) or
    • 35 years (master's degree)
    • Exceptions:
      • You have acquired the higher education entrance qualification on the second educational path,
      • You have enrolled at a university solely on the basis of professional qualifications,
      • You were prevented from starting the training phase on time (and did not work more than 30 hours per week) for personal or family reasons, in particular because of the uninterrupted bringing up of a child under the age of 14, or
      • They have become needy due to drastic changes in their personal circumstances. You were therefore not able to complete an apprenticeship eligible for BAföG funding with a professional qualification.

You will receive BAföG for your studies and the internship if this is according to the
Training regulations is required and for internships outside the EU
lasts at least 12 weeks. For stays abroad within the EU
shorter mandatory internships are also funded.

Documents required

  • Enrollment certificate with the imprint "according to § 9 BAföG" in the original or certificate from the training institution
  • If you are not a German citizen, copy of the
    • identity card,
    • current passport and/or
    • current residence permit
  • If you do not live with your parents: copy
    • of the rental agreement or
    • the registration certificate
  • If you do not have family insurance: Proof of health and long-term care insurance with legal basis and contribution amount
  • If applicable, proof of your own income during the approval period, for example:
    • Pay slip, employment contract, tax assessment
    • orphan's pension notice,
    • grant notice,
    • Riester pension certificate
  • Proof of assets or debts on the day of application, e.g. bank statement
  • If you have a car:
    • Estimation of the value, for example a printout from a website with a comparable offer, and
    • vehicle registration.
  • From the 5th semester: Proof of performance from your university.

Depending on the case, additional documents may be required. Please follow the instructions in the application forms. The BAföG office responsible for you will request any missing documents.

Please note

Since the legal regulation is very complex, you should contact your responsible office for educational support at an early stage.

Further information on a possible contribution reduction:

The following amounts are taken into account, i.e. they reduce your BAföG requirements:

  • The income of your parents and/or your spouse or partner in the penultimate year before the start of the approval period if it is above the tax-free allowance. The allowance is:
    • EUR 2,000 if your parents live together,
    • EUR 1,330 per parent if your parents are separated and
    • EUR 1,330 for a potential spouse or life partner.
    • Note: If your parents, spouse or partner currently earn significantly less than in the year before the approval, you can submit an update application.
    • Parent-independent BAföG: The income of your parents is not used,
      • if you were employed for five years after you turned 18,
      • if you have completed a three-year apprenticeship and then worked for at least three years (in the case of a shorter apprenticeship, correspondingly longer employment),
      • in certain exceptional cases if you are over 30 years old when you start your training.
  • Your own income, insofar as it is more than EUR 450.00 from non-self-employed work per month. From self-employment insofar as it does not exceed EUR 366.66.
  • Your own assets, insofar as they exceed EUR 8,200.
Note: The starting point for calculating income is always the sum of positive income. In education grant law, this is the gross income minus the
  • Advertising expenses (not in the case of self-employment),
  • Social allowance and the
  • taxes actually paid, including church tax and solidarity surcharge.
You can receive BAföG up to the end of the standard period of study. Your BAföG can only be extended afterwards in exceptional cases, for example if you
  • failed the final exam for the first time,
  • have or had a disability or illness,
  • are or were pregnant
  • raised a child up to 14 years of age,
  • are or were active in statutory or statutory committees and bodies of the university, student self-government, student unions or the federal states or
  • have cared for close relatives classified at least in care level 3.
If you break off a degree and start another degree ("change of degree"), your new degree can only be funded if
  • the change took place in the 2nd semester at the latest or
  • the change took place in the 3rd semester and there is an important reason for the change or
  • the change takes place from the 4th semester and there is an irrefutable reason for the change, for example:
    • a disability or allergy to certain substances that occurred after starting the training, which makes it impossible to continue the training or to practice the profession you have been aiming for.


There is no deadline, but BAföG is only granted from the start of training, but at the earliest from the month in which you submit the application. If you submit your application as completely as possible, then a decision can usually be made quickly on your application.

Procedure & Fees


If you would like to apply for BAföG for your studies online:

  • Information video , also available at:
  • First activate the online identification function of your identity card, electronic residence permit or your European eID. You have to register for this.
  • The procedure depends on the federal state in which you complete your studies.
If you do not have an eID, you can still submit your application data electronically. For a legally valid application, however, you must print out the application, sign it and send it by post or upload it to the responsible Office for Educational Support.

If you want to submit the application in paper form:
  • Go to the BAföG website and download the application forms that apply to you. Alternatively, you can also collect the applications from your student union.
  • You can fill out the forms on your computer and print them out, or you can print them out and fill them in by hand.
  • The application must be signed.
  • Add the necessary evidence.
  • Send the completed application forms with the supporting documents directly to the Office for Educational Support that is responsible for you.
  • The Office for Educational Support checks the documents for completeness. If documents are missing, they will be requested from you. If the application is complete, it will be checked and you will be informed of the decision by notification.

Processing time

Up to 6 weeks if the complete documents are available (if no final decision can be made in this time, the offices are legally obliged to pay within 10 weeks with reservations).



Legal notes

Legal remedies

  • Usually contradiction

  • Administrative lawsuit

Legal basis

Federal law on individual support for training (BAföG)

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