Excess income statement: Energy price flat rate for pensioners

December 30, 2022

The energy price flat rate (EPP) of €300 for pensioners and recipients of federal pensions has now also been implemented:

  • This lump sum is paid to anyone who is entitled to an old-age, reduced earning capacity or surviving dependents’ pension under the statutory pension insurance scheme or to pension benefits under the Civil Servants’ Pension Act (Federal Government) or the first and second parts of the Soldiers’ Pension Act on the reference date of December 1, 2022. The entitlement only applies if the person is domiciled in Germany; in this respect, too, the reference date is December 1, 2022.
  • Persons who receive several pensions in parallel will only receive the EPP once.
  • Recipients of comparable benefits from other member states of the European Union receive an EPP if they are resident in Germany and have unlimited tax liability here. In these cases, however, an application must be submitted to the German Pension Insurance Knappschaft-Bahn-See in the period from January 9, 2023 to June 30, 2023.
  • The EPP is to be subject to income tax. So far, this has not been regulated by law. For pensioners, this tax liability could only apply in the context of a tax assessment. In principle, a tax assessment for 2022 is only required if the pension - and possibly other income, such as rental income - exceeds the taxable income of the taxpayer in 2022 by the basic allowance (year 2022: €10,347). In the case of pension recipients, on the other hand, the income tax attributable to the EPP is withheld.
  • The vast majority of pension recipients are to receive the EPP as part of the first payment by Dec. 15, 2022. Individuals who receive a pension for the first time at the end of December will generally not receive the EPP until the second payment date at the beginning of 2023.
  • The EPP is not taken into account as income for social benefits. It is also not to be taken into account when calculating social security contributions.
  • The EPP for pensioners and pension recipients is not subject to garnishment.
  • Pensioners of occupational pension schemes are not eligible under this law. The occupational pension schemes are based on state law. In this respect, such a benefit would have to be decided at the state level for this group of persons.
  • Pensioners of the statutory accident insurance are also not eligible.

Recommendation for action: Double benefits may occur if, for example, pensioners have a mini-job or are in employment subject to social security contributions and have already received an EPP in this context in September. Also, persons whose retirement or pension started in the course of 2022 and who previously pursued an employee activity can receive the EPP twice. These cases are accepted by the legislator.

Retired civil servants of the federal states are not covered by this regulation. In this respect, however, the federal states have adopted comparable support schemes.