In principle, foreigners have the same livelihood entitlement to benefits as Germans do.

You are entitled to Arbeitslosengeld II if you are an eligible person between the age of 15 and the statutory retirement age defined by law, have your permanent residence in Germany and are in need of assistance.

You are in need assistance if you can not, or can not adequately ensure, your livelihood and the livelihood of the people who may be with you in a community of needs from the income or property to be taken into account and the necessary assistance is not provided by other people.

You can only obtain benefits for life support if:

  • You are permanently staying in Germany for the long-term. (If you are a citizen of the country, please indicate this by submitting your rental agreement, your registration document and an identification document);
  • You are lawfully staying in Germany. Please submit your residence permit to the Jobcenter (this does not apply if you are a citizen of the Union);
  • You are already allowed to lawfully work; This is basically the result of your residence permit;
  • You are not entitled to benefits under the Asylum Seekers’ Benefits Act; and
  • Either as an employee or as a self – employed person in Germany, and who are independent, with seriousness and a desire to win, and have not merely registered a business or
  • You have been in Germany for more than three months and you are not solemnly in Germany for work purposes; This also applies to your family members or
  • You have a residence permit for humanitarian reasons.

Foreigners who are excluded from Alg II may claim social welfare.

Staying abroad for up to three weeks a year is permitted by law – with the consent of the jobcenter. In the case of a longer stay abroad, the need for the benefits can be questioned and the claim sanctioned.