Federal aids for students

Students can submit applications until the end of the summer semester (30.09.21).

Since most of the application processors have returned to their departments, we have very few staff available. We therefore ask for your understanding that the processing of applications will take significantly longerin September.

The bridging assistance provided by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) is intended to help students who find themselves in a pandemic-related emergency situation, who require immediate assistance, and who are unable to overcome their individual, pandemic-related emergency situation by taking advantage of other assistance.

Domestic and foreign students who are enrolled at state and state-recognized universities in Germany can apply for bridging assistance.

Thousands of applications reach us every month and we process them as quickly as possible. We kindly ask you to refrain from inquiries regarding the processing time. You can see the current processing status of all our relief funds in the table. This is updated once a week.

last update 17 September Number of applicationsof which approvedof which rejectedstill in process
Grant for start an end of studies3.7761.6182.054104
technology fund9.0136.7142.186113
federal aids42.47324.79216.945736

Please note the following!

  • The access data (and master data) can still be used, but the certificate of study of the current semester must be uploaded.

  • Furthermore, it must be justified and proven that there is a pandemic-related emergency. For this purpose, documents or self-declarations must be submitted, which refer to the two previous months and also the current month. Please note that the self-declaration should not exceed ½ DIN A4 page. The proof of the emergency from the first round is not sufficient! The proof must refer to the previous two months.

  • Reasons can be e.g: Loss of job, unsuccessful applications from the two previous month before application. Everything must be documented accordingly.

  • If it cannot be proven that the termination from the two previous month was due to a pandemic, a self-declaration can be submitted instead, which will explain the reason and circumstances of the termination.

  • Anyone who unsuccessfully applied for a job in the two previous month must provide evidence of at least two applications including rejections. If these documents cannot be provided due to the pandemic, a self-declaration must be submitted with the applications and rejections.

  • As financial proof, the bank statements of the previous month and the current month must be provided. This applies to all accounts whose credit balances can be accessed at short notice.

    New since April 2021:
  • The identity document must be valid on the day of application. Expired identity documents that were accepted for previous applications (until March 2021) can no longer be accepted from April 2021. A valid identity document must be uploaded. You will be asked to upload an ID document that is valid at the time of application if your previously uploaded ID document has already expired.
    Update 1 June:
    Students who have entered Germany from abroad for the purpose of studying (§ 16b Residence Act) should now preferably enclose their electronic residence title as an identity document in the application form, which concerns initial applications or subsequent applications where the validity date of the identity documents has expired.
  • For the evidence of pandemic hardship, there is now also an upload field under "Non-self-employed activity" where the relevant evidence can be uploaded.

  • In the evidence on bank statements, there is now also a text field in which explanations on the bank statements can be given.

  • Applicants must have their residence and permanent abode in Germany.

  • It must be evident from the documents that the applicants must have a right of disposal (at least joint right of disposal) over the domestic account to which the subsidy is to be transferred.

  • According to the guidelines (point 5.4.), the receipt of short-time allowance is an exclusion criterion for the application of a bridging allowance for students.

  • Blackening of individual booking texts is possible under certain circumstances if they represent references to particularly sensitive data within the meaning of Article 9 of the GDPR. In this case, be sure to use the explanation function of the form. 

Please check your documents thoroughly before uploading them:

  • Are the account statements really complete and without gaps (account statements legible and without gaps up to the day before the application)?
  • Has the pandemic-related emergency situation been proven by supporting documents and do these documents refer to the last two months? Or is the self-declaration sufficiently and comprehensibly justified (please note the information below)?
  • Is the enrolment certificate the current semester?

Notes on submitting an application

If your account balance is over 500 euro at the time of application, you are not eligible for federal aids. Any application will be rejected. 

If you yourself receive unemployment benefits from the Jobcenter, you cannot get a bridging allowance.

Those who cannot demonstrate that the pandemic-related hardship occurred only in the past two months must provide evidence of at least two unsuccessful applications for a student job in the past two months.


The application can only be made individually for each month. Only if the pandemic-related emergency persists, a new application can be submitted for another month. The order in which the applications are processed generally depends on the time at which the complete documents are received. Incomplete applications will not be processed.

Please submit your applications in time before the end of the month. There can always be delays in submitting your application (e.g. because your internet connection is slow or because many students submit their application "at the last minute" and the system is overloaded). There have been some cases in the past where the application was only started shortly before midnight on the last day and then could not be sent in time. However, subsequent submissions are not possible! Therefore, please allow enough time for the application.

The application can only be made online. Please use the current version of the internet browser Chrome, Firefox or Opera – or the latest standard browser of mobile devices. If you use Edge as a browser, please upgrade to Edge Chromium from version 83.x. The online application is not supported by Internet Explorer.

Technical problems in submitting documents after request (need for action)?

Try the following quick guide:

  • Log in to the portal (see link in the email, simply click on it) with the generated token.
  • Now you can see that the application status has changed and that there is a "need for action".
  • Now it is important that you click on the upper orange button "edit application".
  • Documents/declarations that need to be corrected will now be displayed and you will find corresponding text notes.
  • Here you can look at the document you uploaded again, delete it and upload the correct document.
  • Important: Documents that you delete can no longer be viewed by the application processors.
    (For example, if you want to upload bank statements for another account, do not delete the other bank statements that you have already uploaded in full).
  • Make sure that all relevant documents are available as soon as you finally submit the application (via "finalise changes").

This film is only available in German.

Most common reasons for rejection

Thousands of applications were already received. We are processing everything under high pressure!
We therefore ask you to check your documents thoroughly for completeness before you send the application!
Any delay will not only cost us time, but also you and your fellow students.

Subsequent submission of documents is only possible after a corresponding request.
We ask for thoroughness here as well. We only ask once.
If not all documents are submitted after the first request, the application will be rejected.

We ask for your understanding that we cannot give individual reasons for every rejection.
In the following we will give an overview of the most common reasons for rejection.

  • Reasons/evidence of pandemic emergency are not up to date (they must not be older than two months). If this is not the case, it must be proven that you have unsuccessfully tried to find a job in the past 2 months (rejections or self-declaration).  Reason for refusal: pandemic-related emergency not proven.
  • Account statements do not end as requested on the day before the application, but earlier, for example at the beginning of the month. Reason for rejection: incomplete/ illegible documents.
  • Account statement shows transfers to or from a secondary account, but corresponding documents of the secondary account (also: Paypal) are not submitted. Reason for rejection: incomplete/ illegible documents.
  • There is no name and IBAN on the bank statement, so the account cannot be clearly assigned. Screenshots are not accepted. Reason for rejection: incomplete/ illegible documents
  • Inadequate self-declaration (max. ½ DIN A4 page) for alimony. It must be explained by whom and in what period maintenance was paid and why it was waived or reduced (the current amount of alimony must be indicated here). Reason for refusal: incomplete/ illegible documents.
  • Insufficient self-declaration (max. ½ DIN A4 page) for termination. It must be explained who the former employer was, how long the employee worked there, reasons for termination, time of termination (last working day), average income and why termination cannot be submitted. Reason for rejection: incomplete/ illegible documents.
  • Insufficient self-declaration (max. ½ DIN A4 page) of self-employment. It must be explained who former clients were, type and extent of activity, average income and extent of income loss/reduction. Reason for refusal: incomplete/ illegible documents.
  • Insufficient self-declaration (max. ½ DIN A4 page) of rejected applications. It must be explained to whom the applications were sent, the date of applications and rejections, the planned scope of the job and amount of income and why no applications and rejections can be proven. Reason for rejection: incomplete/ illegible documents.
  • Self-declaration indicates that parents can no longer provide support, but account statements still show payments from parents. Reason for refusal: pandemic-related emergency not proven.
  • Self-declaration indicates that parents have not been able to provide support since the spring. Student is unable to provide evidence of his/her own efforts to change the situation (e.g. application initiatives). Reason for refusal: An acute emergency due to the pandemic has not been proven.
  • Reasons/evidence for the pandemic-related emergency are not current (they must not be older than two months). A dormant employment relationship, especially in the catering and cultural sector, is no longer sufficient. Proof must be provided that one has tried in vain to find a job in the past 2 months (refusals or self-declaration). Reason for refusal: pandemic-related emergency not proven.
  • Reasons/evidence for the pandemic-related hardship are not current (they must not be older than two months). Lost orders from a self-employed activity are no longer sufficient. Proof must be provided that one has tried in vain to find a job in the past 2 months (refusals or self-declaration). Reason for refusal: pandemic-related emergency not proven.

A note from studierendenWERK BERLIN ...

Further financial aid from studierendenWERK BERLIN that students can apply for:

Fund "participation in the online campus"

As well as the grant for the start or completion of studies