Checklist – Employment and financial matters after the birth of a child

Notification of maternity leave to the employer

Employees are entitled to parental leave during the first two years of the child’s life (up to and including the day before the second birthday) if they live with the child in the same household.

Parental leave following the protection period must be notified to the employer by the mother within that period (usually 8 weeks after the birth), and by the father no later than 8 weeks after the birth.

If the parent who initially takes care of the child is not entitled to parental leave (e.g. self-employed persons, students, homemakers), and if the employed parent takes parental leave at a later date, he or she must give notice of the parental leave at least three months before it begins.

The parental leave should be notified to the employer in a verifiable manner, for example by registered letter.

The employer must issue confirmation of the start and duration of the parental leave. The confirmation serves as proof that the other parent is not benefiting from parental leave at the same time. It must be signed by both the employer and the employee. Such confirmations are exempt from stamp fees and federal administrative levies.

More detailed information about "parental leave and partial parental leave"German text can also be found at oesterreich.gv.at.

Family allowances

Since 1 May 2015, family allowances for the birth of a child have been available without the need to apply for them. The data of the child born in Austria and the civil status data of the parents are recorded by the registry office in the Central Civil Status Register. The Federal Ministry of the Interior (responsible for keeping the Central Civil Status Register) then transmits this data to the tax authorities. On the basis of the electronic data available, the tax authorities will automatically check whether all the conditions for the granting and disbursement of family allowances are met and all the information required for that purpose is present.

If this is the case, the parents do not need to do anything else and do not need to fill out a family allowance application or contact their local tax office. You will receive an information letter from the tax authorities informing you of your entitlement to family allowances for your child. At the same time as this letter is sent, the family allowance amount will be transferred to your account.

If the tax authorities still require information, such as the account number (IBANBIC), the parents are asked to provide the missing data or to answer any questions that are still unanswered. There is also no need to apply for family allowances in this case. It is sufficient to return the information letter with the answers and any supporting documents.

In all other cases, it is still necessary to apply for the granting of family allowances. The application for family allowances can be submitted to the tax office of the place of residence electronically via FinanzOnline.

Advice

The child tax credits are automatically paid out together with the family allowances. They do not have to be applied for separately.

Detailed information about family allowances and cross-border family benefits in the EU can also be found at oesterreich.gv.at.

Applying for childcare allowance

The childcare allowance can be applied for at the earliest on the day of the birth. The amount of the childcare allowance is linked to the extent to which the first ten mother-child health passport examinations have been carried out correctly and documented (five for the mother during pregnancy and five for the child after the birth).

There are various disbursement variants. In contrast to the flat-rate childcare allowance, the earnings-related childcare allowance is granted only to those persons who have actually engaged in gainful employment subject to compulsory insurance under the social security scheme in Austria in the 182 calendar days preceding the birth of the child. The flat-rate childcare allowance is also granted to those groups of persons who are not/have not been gainfully employed or compulsorily insured. These include, for example, homemakers, students or those in minor employment.

Other conditions are that the child must live in the same household, and entitlement to or actual receipt of family allowances for the child.

An application for childcare allowance must be made to the competent authority. This is:

  • the sickness insurance institution from which the maternity benefit or operating aid is or was received;
  • otherwise, the sickness insurance institution with which one of the parents is (co-)insured or was last (co-)insured;
  • in all other cases: the location of the Austrian Health Insurance Fund (Österreichische Gesundheitskasse) to which the application for childcare allowance is submitted.

The application can be submitted in person, in writing or electronically (with a Citizen Card or mobile phone signature or via FinanzOnline).

In principle, recipients of maternity allowance should receive the forms automatically, but they can also be found at oesterreich.gv.at.

The original copy of the application form must be completed in full, signed and submitted to the competent authority or electronically signed and sent. The necessary documentation must be attached. Where applications are submitted electronically, they may subsequently have to be submitted in person or by post.

If you wish to take turns receiving the childcare allowance with the other parent, the second parent must submit a separate application. If this results in two applications for the same period, written notification of the termination and of the receiving parent’s consent to the change is required. As a check of the eligibility requirements can only be carried out towards the start of entitlement, however, it is recommended that the application not be submitted until around four to six weeks before the planned change. The other parent is bound to the variant already chosen and therefore cannot choose another variant.

Low-income recipients of one of the flat-rate variants of the childcare allowance can additionally apply for a supplement to the flat-rate childcare allowance. The supplement to the flat-rate childcare allowance can be applied for at the earliest at the same time as the childcare allowance.

Detailed information about the childcare allowance and the supplement to the flat-rate childcare allowance for newborn babies can also be found at oesterreich.gv.at.

Partnership bonus

If the parents have received the childcare allowance in approximately equal proportions (50:50 to 60:40) and for a period of at least 124 days each, they can apply for a partnership bonus of EUR 1 000.

Detailed information about the Partnership bonus can also be found at oesterreich.gv.at.

Family-time bonus for fathers

It is possible to obtain financial support for fathers who devote themselves to the family immediately after the birth (so-called ‘family-time bonus’). In order to receive it, all gainful employment must be ceased temporarily.

Detailed information about cross-border family benefits in the EU can also be found at oesterreich.gv.at.

Annual tax assessment/tax allowances and relief for families

  • Sole breadwinner’s allowance, single parent’s allowance
  • Tax credits for maintenance
  • Anyone who can demonstrate that he/she pays statutory maintenance for a child who does not live in the same household is entitled to monthly tax credits for maintenance.
  • Tax relief for children
  • Tax relief for children can be claimed up to and including the assessment for the 2018 calendar year.
  • Family Bonus Plus
  • As from 2019, the Family Bonus Plus replaces the tax deductibility of childcare costs and the tax relief for children. The Family Bonus Plus is a tax deduction of EUR 1 500 per child per year until the child reaches the age of 18. After the child’s 18th birthday, parents are entitled to a reduced Family Bonus Plus of EUR 500 per year, provided that they receive family allowances for that child.

The child tax credits are automatically paid out together with the family allowances. Detailed information about tax allowances and relief for families, annual tax assessments and income tax returns can also be found at oesterreich.gv.at.

Maintenance payments

Parents must pay child maintenance for their children in equal proportions until the point at which they are able to support themselves. Detailed information about maintenance can be found at oesterreich.gv.at. Further information (also in English) about Maintenance – Austria can also be found for EU citizens on the European e-Justice Portal.

Mother-child health passport examinations for the child

As a general rule, the first mother-child health passport examination for the child must be conducted in the first week of the child’s life. Five medical examinations of the child are scheduled for the first 14 months of the child’s life. It is recommended that a hip ultrasound examination be conducted in the first and in the sixth, seventh or eighth week of the child’s life. Four further medical examinations of the child are scheduled for the period running up to 62nd month of the child’s life.

In order to receive childcare allowance, the five examinations during pregnancy and the five examinations during the first 14 months of the child’s life must be correctly carried out and documented. Since failure to carry out an examination (or several examinations), late examinations and failure to provide proof of the examinations to the sickness insurance fund will lead to a reduction in the childcare allowance (from the age of 25, 17, 13 or ten months, depending on the type of benefit chosen), the examinations must be carried out within the prescribed periods. Only under certain circumstances is it possible to deviate from the prescribed examination dates.

Information about the examination programme can also be found at oesterreich.gv.at.

Extension of parental leave – Notifying the employer

Up until three months before the end of the notified parental leave at the latest, it is possible to inform the employer that the leave is to be extended and to specify the amount of time by which it is to be extended (the extension cannot go beyond the point at which the child reaches the age of two). If parental leave of less than three months was originally notified, the extension must be notified two months before the end of that period.

More detailed information about "parental leave and partial parental leave" can also be found at oesterreich.gv.at.

Translated by the European Commission
Last update: 21 April 2021

Responsible for the content: oesterreich.gv.at Editorial Staff