Mini jobs and short-term employment

//Mini jobs and short-term employment

Idea in short

  • As a student with BAföG, a side job is generally allowed.
  • The BAföG claim depends on the income of the student.
  • The amount received from BAföG can be reduced with a side job.

If the student takes on a mini-job at a company, he must be registered by the employer at the mini-job centre. He then has the same rights as all employees; this includes vacation and continued sick pay. And, the minimum wage of € 8.84t per hour is binding. As a student, no special regulations for the mini-job apply. Accordingly, it is either a:

  • 450-euro mini-job, if the regular monthly salary does not exceed the € 450 limit, or
  • Short-term mini-job, if your employment is limited to three months or 70 working days from the outset.

Characteristic of a mini-job is the maximum monthly earnings of € 450 euros per month. You do not have to pay taxes and you can choose not to pay contributions towards the state pension.
The employer, however, does pay pension contributions for mini-jobbers so that their claim to a state pension is secured. Students can supplement the employer’s contribution with their own voluntary contributions.

As a rule, the employer is responsible for the payment of income tax, church tax and solidarity surcharge. For the mini-job, either a monthly salary can be agreed – then the number of hours due to the minimum wage is of course limited – or a fixed hourly rate. Mini-jobs are also available in private households; legally, for the employee, they are hardly any different from mini-jobs in industry. Mini-jobs are advertised by the employer in the mini-job centre. If you do several mini-jobs at the same time the total income must remain below € 450 Euro, otherwise you have to pay taxes and social insurance contributions.

A short-term employment is when the student is not employed for more than 3 months or 70 calendar days at a time. If the student only works during the semester break, there is no limit to wages or weekly working hours. You are not subject to social insurance. However, the income is subject to tax liability. There are two options for taxation:

  1. Individual taxation based on the income tax bracket, or
  2. A lump-sum payroll tax of 25% (does not include church tax or solidarity surcharge).

Filing your income tax return may be worthwhile.

During term holidays the obligation to pay contributions towards the state pension may not be applicable: this applies if the employment is limited to a maximum of 2 months or 50 working days per year.


  • If you are a student and have income from a side job, your BAföG will be affected.
  • If you have several part-time jobs, your income will be added together.
  • Everything that is over the allowance is split over 12 months and deducted from the BAföG.
By |2018-09-21T22:36:52+00:00September 7th, 2018|Career|

About the Author:

Mithun Sridharan
I am Mithun Sridharan, Managing Partner & Co-founder of INTRVU, where I run the Career Services track. I'm also responsible for strategy and platforms at INTRVU. An Engineer by education and a Management Consultant by passion, I advise clients on strategic management, business and Digital initiatives. I hold an MBA from the European School of Management & Technology (ESMT) Berlin and a Master of Science in Digital Communications from Christian Albrechts University of Kiel. I also run Think Insights, a blog on Management Consulting and serve as the Frankfurt Chapter Lead for The Linux Foundation since 2016. I enjoy reading business books & magazines (Economist, Wired, Harvard Business Review, McKinsey Quarterly, BCG Insights, etc.), listening to podcasts (TED Talks, David Ramsey Show, a16z, Tim Ferriss Show, etc.), playing golf and watching history documentaries. I am based in Heidelberg, Germany.
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