Coalition concludes basic pension: A new social package


BTo 1.5 million long-term pension-insured seniors should receive more pension in the future. The leaders of the grand coalition have agreed on a compromise on Sunday for months disputed land rent on Sunday. This provides for an increase in the statutory pensions for insured persons with at least 35 contribution years, as proposed by Labor Minister Hubertus Heil (SPD) in the spring with his bill on basic pension. However, the access should be limited by a so-called income test, which should make the pension insurance together with the tax offices. Single persons with a monthly total income of more than 1250 Euro (couples: 1950 Euro) receive no ground rent.

Dietrich Creutzburg

At the same time, the coalition leaders decided on a comprehensive package of additional new regulations, which include a reduction in the number of employees in statutory health insurance and a reduction in the contribution rate to unemployment insurance to 2.4 percent of the gross salary. The jobless contribution had been reduced from 3 to 2.5 per cent on January 1; As of 1 January 2023, he would then rise to 2.6 percent according to the current legal situation. Now it is planned that the rate should be 2.4 percent up to and including 2022. This means a mathematical burden on employers and employees by a total of 1.2 billion euros per year.

A central difference

For recipients of occupational pensions, instead of the current fixed exemption of EUR 155.75 per month for cash contributions, an exempt amount will apply in the future, which will gradually increase with the income trend over the next few years. The main difference to the previous regulation is that all employees, regardless of the amount of their remuneration, benefit from the allowance. You only have to pay contributions on the part of your occupational pension that is above the threshold. The previous exemption limit spared, however, only occupational pensions, whose total monthly amount was at most 155 euros, who has one more euro, has to pay the full cash contributions so far. The contribution defaults of the health insurance are estimated on yearly 1.2 billion euro.

Further components of the overall package are an increase in the tax-free subsidy amount for employer-financed occupational pensions to low-wage earners; the monthly subsidy should double to 288 euros. In addition, the tax-exempt amount for employee equity investments is set to increase from 360 to 720 euros; So it should be more attractive that companies turn their employees into shareholders. Finally, it was agreed to set up an investment fund for future technologies at the promotional bank KfW, which in particular will promote young companies in the fields of digitization and climate protection.

The planned new Grundrente follows in its design technically the proposals of SPD Social Minister Heil. Deviating from the original regulation in the coalition agreement, the claimant should not receive a supplement to the basic security, but a higher statutory pension, which should save them – according to the SPD concept – from the outset the transition to social services. Specifically, it provides that those insured persons may receive an increase whose annual contributory wage over working life was less than 80 per cent of the general average wage. Thus, calculations by the Ministry of Social Affairs, for example, for a long-standing hairdressing force with 513 euros regular pension, an increase to 961 euros possible. Exact details of the expected costs did not make the coalition tops. The CSU chairman Markus SOder spoke of a magnitude up to 1.5 billion euros a year.

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