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15 changes taking place in Germany in July 2022

German news. Guides for living in Germany. Changes in Germany July 2022: Here are the changes you should look forward to that will affect everyday life for people in Germany in July 2022:

1. Minimum wage rises

The statutory minimum wage in Germany is expected to make a 6 percent rise again on 1st July 2022, to 10.45 euros per hour. It’s due to make one more rise in October to 12 euros per hour.

READ ALSO: Minimum wages in Germany 2022: guide in English

2. Employers should reimburse overpaid tax

In March the federal government increased the tax-free allowance for 2022. This means the first 10.347 euros of your income will remain free from income tax this year.

According to the Federal Taxpayers’ Association, after overpaying at the beginning of the year, you might be due back some income tax that is to be paid back by employers in July.

Germany: Permanent residence for minors and children

3. Parents to receive one-off child bonus

Families in Germany can look forward to a one-off child bonus (Kinderbonus) of 100 euros, as part of the government’s package of energy relief measures. The bonus shall be paid automatically to everyone registered for child benefits.

READ MORE HERE: Germany: Changes to the child bonus and child benefit in 2022

4. Significant pension rise

From July 2022, pensioners in Germany will see their monthly pension benefits increase significantly. Pension will increase in the western federal states will be by 5.35 percent, and 6.12 percent in the east.

5. EEG-Surcharge scrapped

After more than 20 years the EEG-Surchagre Surcharge (EEG-Umlage) will no longer be applied to the price of electricity in Germany after July 2022.

This doesn’t mean that people in Germany will experience a massive difference in prices but electricity bills could end up being cheaper.

Tax currently sits at 3.72 cents per kilowatt-hour.

COVID-19 in Germany

6. No further free COVID tests 

The government decided to put an end to the free testing scheme on July 1st.

Children under the age of 6 will still require to be tested togetehr with women in the early stages of pregnancy, visitors to hospitals and nursing homes, and people living in the same household with someone who tests positive.

All who are not within the risk group, will be required to make a payment of 3 euros per test.

7. Ease of contract termination

From the 1st of July 2022, providers will be required to offer a “termination button” on their websites that will allow customers to easily end their contracts.

8. Supermarkets obligated to take old electrical goods

Retailers in Germany will now be required to take back broken or old electrical goods, for purpose of recycling or disposing of them appropriately.

Customers will be able to return small electrical goods like Kettles and toothbrushes to discounters and supermarkets, irrespective of where the items were originally bought.

9. More bottles subject to Pfand

Germany’s Pfand deposit scheme is also being extended in July, so that in future the 25-cent charge will also be applied to disposable plastic bottles containing fruit juice and alcoholic mixed drinks, as well as cans.

Only plastic bottles for milk remain exempt, as well as tetra paks. 

10. E-cigarette prices rising

From July 2022, customers will notice a price increase on e-cigarettes as they will be subjected to tobacco taxation in Germany for the first time.

E-cigarettes are considered an alternative to smoking, but has raised concerns about their addictiveness and attractiveness to the young generation.

11. Rise in cost of sending packages

After DHL adjusted its prices, sending a package in Germany is about to be more expensive. There shall be no difference for domestic shipment between prices paid online or in-store.

With international shipment significantly more expensive and in some circumstances costs being twice as high.

12. Germany changes July 2022: End to Hartz-IV sanctions

Individuals receiving Hartz-IV unemployment benefits in Germany will no longer be bound by certain obligations, such as attending appointments, making demonstrable efforts to find a job and accepting offers of employment given to them.

In the past, failure to do this, the job centre would be able to cut their social security by up to 30 percent. After being panned as unfair, this practice has been suspended temporarily until next year.

Coronavirus in Germany: masks

13. Paper driving licenses exchange deadline

First deadlines for older drivers is approaching, with all driving licenses in Germany expected to be exchanged for new EU-standard ones by 2033. Holders of old driving licenses who were born between 1953 and 1958, are required to hand over their paper licenses to their local driving authority to get it swapped for a new EU driving license valid for 15 years.

READ ALSO: Exchange of driving license in Germany 2022: When and where you can replace the document

14.  New transparency laws on rent

Extension of rent index to more cities in Germany, to help tenants and landlords compare rental prices and decide upon fair amounts. Both parties are required to give information about their rents if asked by authorities, anyone refusing to comply could face a fine of up to 5,000 euros.

15. First stage of property tax reform

Germany is currently revamping its property tax system. The first stage is recalculating the value of millions of houses and apartments across the country for purpose of property tax.

Between the months of July and October 2022, homeowners and landowners will be asked to submit a kind of tax return via ELSTER, outlining various details about their properties. New tax rates are expected to be announced at end of 2024.