Meal allowances

Meal allowances are designed to compensate for the additional costs that a person incurs because they are away from their home and first place of work for professional reasons and therefore have higher catering costs compared to meals at home.

Practical tip

Although meal allowances can be freely agreed in the contract, meal allowances paid should not exceed the respective tax allowances. Otherwise there is a risk that tax and social security exemption for meal allowances may be withdrawn. If the temporary employment agency wishes to reimburse the employee for higher amounts, payments exceeding the tax allowance should be shown separately and taxed as income.

Tax-exempt flat costs

Tax-exempt flat costs are business trips as follows:

Absence time Flat amount
24 hours EUR 24.00
Minimum of 8 up to 24 hours EUR 12.00
Flat overnight costs EUR 20.00

Reimbursement of costs

Pursuant to sec. 670 of the German Civil Code (BGB, Bürgerliches Gesetzbuch), the employee is entitled to reimbursements of additional expenses actually incurred if

  • the entitlement was not waived by a contract,
  • the additional expenses exceed the customary amount and
  • the employee proves that such additional expenses were incurred.