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Free €500 Support For International Students By The German Government

The Federal Government of Germany and KfW are offering support to students. The students will not have to pay any interest on the KfW student Loan. This is also applicable for international students to apply for the KfW student loan under new conditions, which are valid until 1 April 2021.

What Is Kfw Student Loan?

The KfW Student Loan is a low-interest loan (Interest @ 0% until 1 April 2021, if your loan is in disbursement phase) provided to cover the cost of living. Under this scheme, You can receive monthly disbursements of up to EUR 650 inn the Disbursement phase. After this phase ends, the loan enters a grace period in which you only pay interest, i.e., the Interest-only phase. After this, the Repayment phase begins. 

Who Can Apply For The Support?

The KfW student loan is available to students of all the state-recognized universities in Germany (i.e., students studying in either private universities which are accredited by the German states or the public universities) between the ages of 18 and 44, who meet one of the following requirements:

  • German citizens with a registered domestic address.
  • A family member of a German citizen, who has a registered local address.
  • EU citizens have been legally residing in Germany for at least three years and are also registered in Germany.
  • Family members of EU citizens who have been legally living in Germany for at least three years and are also registered in Germany.
  • Bildungsinländer and registered in Germany.

The KfW student loan is extended for a limited period. This also enables the international students (i.e., EU citizens who have been living in Germany for less than three years and students of other countries) to avail themselves of the loan if they have their primary residence in Germany. 

What Courses Are Supported?

A student may be studying full-time, part-time, or even while working can apply for the support. Programs at distance learning universities are also allowed. The only criteria are that your university must be located in Germany and be a state or state-accredited university.

The following courses of study can be financed with the KfW Student Loan: First Undergraduate degree

  • Second degree (further undergraduate studies)
  • Additional, supplementary or postgraduate studies
  • Master’s (postgraduate studies)
  • Doctorate

Let us see, how is the amount to be disbursed decided.

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Case 1:

AgeNo Of Semesters Of Support  (upto)Maximum Total Amount of Support
<2414EUR 650 * 14 * 6 months per semester = EUR 54,600
<3410EUR 650 * 10 * 6 months per semester = EUR 39,000
<446EUR 650 * 6 * 6 months per semester = EUR 23,400
>44EUR 650 * 0 * 6 months per semester = EUR 0
In Case Of First Or Second Degree

Case 2:

No Of Semesters Of Support (upto)Maximum Total Amount of Support
6EUR 650 * 6 * 6 months per semester = EUR 23,400
In Case Of Post Graduate Studies Or Doctorate

Lump-sum disbursement of the total amount or a one -time payments are not possible.

Can the Student Loan be combined with other promotional programs? 

The KfW Student Loan can be combined with other promotional programs like the Education Loan or with funds under other government support schemes for students.

Documents Required For Application?

If you find that the student’s loan is suitable for you, and you have met the prerequisites of application, then you can apply for the loan and submit your documents to a distribution partner ( bank and student services )

The following signed documents are required to be submitted with the application:

  • Print out of Contract offer.
  • Valid and official ID document (e.g., identity card, personal ID, passport).
  • Certificate of Study, which is valid on the day the financing begins.
  • Proof of current account (e.g., bank statement or bank card)
  • For a non-EU citizen, a valid student visa and/or resident permit.

About two weeks is required for the review of the above application, along with the documents. If everything is OK, then a reply by post is sent.

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How Are Disbursements Made And What Needs To Be Done During The Disbursement Phase?

At the beginning of each semester (no later than 15 April and 15 October), you have to prove that you are still registered at a German University. Only then the disbursement will be released. The KfW deducts the interest( 0% until 1 April 2021) on your current loan amount from the monthly payment. 

A proof of your academic record is also required to be provided not later than at the end of the 6th semester. If the same is not provided, the disbursements would be discontinued.

If you study for more than ten semesters, a certificate from your university showing when you are expected to complete the degree is also required at the end of the 10th semester.

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What Happens After The Disbursements Phase?

After you have received your last disbursement, the interest-only period begins. This lasts 18 – 23 months and can be shortened to 6 months on request. During this grace period, you only pay interest, and you don’t repay the loan. This will be debited from your account on the first of each month. In this phase, you can also apply for your interest to be capitalized. This means that the interest is initially not paid and is added to the loan amount at the end of the phase.

Repayment always starts on 01 April or 01 October.

Five months before the repayment, a repayment schedule is provided on the applicant’s online loan portal.

Is it is Possible To Make Changes During The Term Of Loan?

Yes. It is possible to make the following changes during the term of the loan:

  • The amount of disbursements can be changed between EUR 100 to EUR 650 on 15 March and 15 September.

· It is possible to stop disbursements on the 15th of each month, after which the loan enters the interest-only period.

  • After the receipt of the repayment schedule, it can be adjusted by 15 March and 15 September.

What Are The Rules For Repayment Of The Student Loan?

There usually is a waiting period of 6 to 23 months in which the loan generally pays interest(which is the interest-only phase). No repayment is required in this period. In the subsequent phase, which is the repayment phase, a minimum repayment of EUR 20 per month is required. There is a maximum repayment period of 25 years, and the loan must be repaid before attainment of age 67 at the latest. 

On request, the repayment schedule can also be altered. There is an option to choose the regular repayment period of ten years with steady interest level or generate a different period by choosing another monthly installment amount.

In some cases, a deferral of repayment is also possible. In such a case, the financial situation and income need to be disclosed, and necessary documents and proofs need to be uploaded in the online portal. In such cases, the contractual deferral interest needs to be paid.

However, there is a maximum repayment period of 25 years, and the loan must be repaid before attainment of age 67 at the latest. 

For any further queries regarding this topic, you can comment on the comment box below, and we will be glad to resolve it.

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