‘Community of needs’  is a concept of social assistance. It was laid down in the German law in the reform of the basic insurance for jobseekers in 2005 in the newly regulated Second Social Code.

A so-called demand community can consist of one or more people. At least one member of a community of needs must be able to work and be eligible for benefits under the SGB II.

To the community of needs belong:

  • A person eligible to work;
  • As a partner of non-permanently separated spouses or registered partners;
  • A partner in a marriage-like life cohabitation. The prerequisite is that the partners live in the common household (housing and economic community) and there is a reciprocal desire between the partners to take responsibility and stand for each other. In certain constellations, this will is suspected, e.g. If partners have already lived together for more than a year;
  • Household unmarried children under the age of 25 (unless the child has sufficient income or assets of his own);
  • The parents or the parent of an unmarried, active, under 25-year-old child, when living together in a household. The partner of the parent living in the same household also belongs to the community of needs.

To the community of needs do not belong:

  • Children who are able to support their livelihood from their own income or wealth,
  • Married children and children who are already 25 years old, even if they live with their parents,
  • Permanently separated (living) partners.

However, these individuals can form needs groups with others, so that several needs’ communities can exist in one household.

A so-called temporary ‘community of needs’ exists when children of separated parents are regularly, but not permanently, members of the other parent’s household. The child can then claim a tag-like claim.

If there is a community of needs between several people, this can have an effect on the individual performance requirements of the individual persons. Several impacts can take place as a result of that:

  • The relevant rule requirement of the individual person,
  • The appropriate (reasonable) needs of the accommodation and heating and
  • The recognition of income and assets of other members of the community of needs.

The income and assets of individual members of the community of needs are also taken into account within a community of needs among the other members of the community of needs. In other words, if an adult member has income or assets, he must stand for the others. Excluded from this rule is the income and wealth of children. As a rule, the income and wealth of the child is to cover only the child’s own needs.

In the case of the needy community, it is assumed that the eligible recipient of benefits may also apply and receive benefits for the other members of the community of needs.