Relief package: How citizens get their money in concrete terms

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Family allowance, cold progression, climate bonus: The government is handing billions to the population. How do the benefits reach the population?

Relief package: How citizens get their money in concrete terms
Higher family allowances, deductions, indexed social benefits, one-time payments for the needy: The Federal government is bringing billions to the people because of high inflation. Specifically, five billion will be paid out this year; 22 billion will follow in the coming years. But how exactly will the money reach the people?

Many details are still open, explains Silvia Rocha-Akis, an expert from the Economic Research Institute (Wifo) in Vienna. It has not yet been determined how exactly the unique payment of 300 euros to unemployed persons, social welfare recipients, and other needy. According to the government, the assistance is paid out starting in September 2022.

Application via tax equalization
All benefits that have to do with tax deductibility must be applied via the employee assessment, better known as tax equalization. This is done, for example, digitally via the tax office portal Finanz Online. In concrete terms: for example, the increased family bonus (2000 instead of 1500 euros), the increased additional amount for children (550 instead of 450 euros), and the one-time cost-of-living deduction (up to 500 euros) will be implemented. Most taxpayers will probably not see these funds until February of next year because the associated employee tax assessment must refer to the whole year 2022. Alternatively, benefits such as the family bonus can be paid out directly by the employer via payroll accounting; this would be possible several months earlier.

Transfer to the account
The climate bonus and the so-called “cost-of-living bonus” – 250 euros each – will be transferred to Austrians’ accounts from October. Sender: the climate protection ministry of the Greens Leonore Gewessler. “If no account data is available, people will receive a voucher by RSa letter. This can be redeemed in stores or exchanged for cash at a bank,” the ministry’s website says.

The one-time increase in family allowance for all by 180 euros from August 2022 will simply be added to the current payment, says Wifo expert Rocha-Akis. This means that all those who receive family allowance will receive a one-time increase. The same applies to the inflation adjustment of the family allowance and other social benefits starting from next year. From then on, family allowances will be about 20 euros higher per month.

The relief package will also have an impact on paychecks. The abolition of cold progression from next year will mean that employees will see a higher net salary on their pay slips.

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