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In the past few days, a plethora of government aid measures have been approved to help smaller businesses and freelancers weather the COVID 19 crisis. We provide an overview here, with a focus on berlin (as of 30.03.2020, 12.30 p.M.)

Short-time worker money

If at least 10 percent of employees are forced into short-time work due to the crisis and have a loss of pay of more than 10 percent, then short-time allowance can be claimed for all employees who are on short-time work. Those affected then receive 60 percent of their usual net pay from the state (67% for employees who have at least one child). Accrued social security contributions for lost working hours are reimbursed 100 percent to the company. More information and the necessary documents can be found at arbeitsagentur.En/short work.

Subsidies from federal and state funds

The state of berlin and the federal government provide up to 15.000 for the self-employed, freelancers and micro-enterprises, including. Registered associations with up to ten employees (full-time equivalents) ready to suffer losses in sales that threaten their existence due to the crisis. The money must be used for current operating costs (rent, loans, etc.).) are used. For self-employed persons or companies with less than five employees, up to 5.000 euros also paid for living expenses.

State and federal funds can be applied for together by applying through corona zuschuss: soforthilfe. Because of the great demand (on the first weekend nearly 50.000 applications processed), waiting times are to be expected on the website. For the application itself, however, only a few pieces of information are then necessary: name, street, postal code, legal form of the company, identification document, tax ID and bank details of the company.

Interest-free loans

Both the state of berlin and the federal government have set up programs through which companies in need as a result of the corona crisis can obtain interest-free loans. The conditions of the berlin loan program can be viewed here: liquidity assistance berlin. Federal loans are granted via the kfw development bank in conjunction with the establishment's respective house bank. But the first point of contact is your bank. Before the interview with the house bank, the documents can be prepared using the following link: kfw corona aid.

Deferral of advance tax payments

The tax offices have been instructed to defer the obligation to pay income, corporation or sales tax in advance on request, or at least to assess a lower amount. Simply register for this with your tax office!

Government guarantees

Government guarantees are available to secure new or current loans. Further information can be found under guarantees.

Deferral of current costs

The bundestag has issued a so-called moratorium on contracts. Consumers, professionals and companies with fewer than ten employees and an annual turnover and balance sheet of less than 2 million euros, who can prove that they are unable to pay essential bills due to the COVID 19 pandemic and the policy measures, may refuse to pay. The moratorium will apply from 1. April and until 30. June.

This scheme applies to essential continuing obligations that are necessary for the provision of services of general interest. It does not apply to rental, lease and loan agreements (but see notes 1 and 2 under this paragraph)!) as well as in connection with employment contracts. However, affected are, for example, mandatory insurance, telecommunications services, advance payments for electricity, gas and water (unless included in the rent), license fees for TV or music subscriptions (eg. B. Sky), subscriptions to goods (z. B. Minimum purchase quantities of beverages) etc. Contracts must be signed before 8. March 2020 have been closed.

Important: when the moratorium expires, payments must be made in arrears. Talk to your contractors before invoking the moratorium – often an amicable solution can be found!

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Note 2: for commercial enterprises that have had to close due to general orders issued by the federal states under the infection protection act (z. B. Restaurants), the possibility of a rent reduction is currently being discussed. Affected persons should inform themselves about this and also about the option of only paying the rent conditionally in the future, z. B. Here: pay april rent with reservation.

Improved protection against termination in tenancy and lease agreements

Until 30. June, there is increased protection against dismissal: if the tenant is fired in the period between 1. April 2020 until 30. June 2020 cannot pay the rent or lease due to the COVID 19 pandemic, may not be terminated without notice for this reason. Important: after 30. June 2022, the payment must be made up!

Compensation for measures under the infection protection act

If a business suffers a loss of revenue because of an official ban on activities or a quarantine decision under the infection control act, compensation may be payable. The application documents and more detailed requirements can be found online at compensation under the infection protection act.

Special support for parents

Those who have to look after their own children because of school or daycare closures and cannot go to work receive compensation of 67 percent of their monthly net income (maximum 2.016 euros) for up to six weeks. Payment is made by the appointing authority, which can submit an application for reimbursement to the relevant state authority.

In addition: families with low income can receive a monthly child supplement of up to 185 euros in addition to the child allowance. The examination of the conditions and the request takes place on-line under request child supplement.

Easier access to basic benefits and housing subsidies

Who has few reserves and suffers heavy losses of turnover, should examine also whether a requirement for basic security or housing subsidy is present. Self-employed people (and employees) can now more easily receive these benefits, ensuring their livelihood and ability to remain in their own homes during a crisis despite a loss of earnings. Applicants do not have to disclose their financial circumstances or touch their assets, nor do they have to move into a smaller apartment for the next few months. All further information and the application documents can be found under FAQ on basic support.