Jobcenter has to pay electronic dictionary

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For Hartz IV recipients there is money for school books. © Jan Woitas / dpa-Zentralbild / dpa-tmn

School books can be expensive. There is money for this for Hartz IV recipients. According to one court, this is not always enough. Therefore, a right to additional needs can arise.

Oldenburg – The job center has to pay a student the cost of an electronic dictionary as an additional requirement. If such dictionaries are prescribed, they are to be treated like school books. The rate at Hartz-IV of 2.55 euros per month for school books is not realistic, ruled the Oldenburg Social Court (Az .: S 37 AS 1268/19).

In the case reported by the Social Law Working Group of the German Lawyers’ Association (DAV), the plaintiff, born in 2003, received supplementary benefits under SGB II (Hartz IV) together with her mother and her siblings. She was a student at a vocational school. The school asked them to purchase an electronic dictionary for language lessons at a price of around 138 euros.

Job center refused to assume the costs

The plaintiff then applied to the job center for reimbursement of the costs. The job center said that the dictionary was part of personal school needs and rejected the application. These costs are already covered by the approved benefits for education and participation.

The social court obliged the job center to assume the costs. The expenses are neither covered by the services provided by the job center for equipping pupils with personal school needs, nor are they covered by the standard needs.

Rules must not be realistic

The standard requirement also includes the cost of purchasing school books. However, the court did not consider the determination of the standard requirement to be realistic. According to the court, the need for the procurement of school books has not been correctly recorded in a structurally realistic manner.

When determining the standard requirements, costs for the purchase of school books are only taken into account in the amount of 2.55 euros per month. Not enough for the judges: This does not cover the need for the procurement of school books, at least in countries that do not guarantee the freedom of teaching materials. dpa

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