Public Broadcasting License Fees (Rundfunkbeitrag)

The public broadcasting license fees from ARD, ZDF and Deutschlandradio (former GEZ) is compulsory and need to be paid by everyone living in Germany. A flatrate contribution is charged to every apartment so that, in principle, every household has to pay it. TV/radio taxes must be paid for each apartment, even if this apartment is inhabited by foreign students exclusively and you do not own tv/radio. The monthly fee amounts to approx. 18 €.

On the right side of this website you will find links and documents about public broadcasting fees. We also prepared most important FAQs for you - please read this document carefully.

How do you know that you have to pay the fee? ↓

After your registration in the city you will receive a letter with a request for the registration and the information about the payment. you must answer to that letter using the attached form from the broadcasting services or you can do it with the special online form.
Usually there is a form which is sent to you via post and you can just fill it in and send it back to the stated address.

Where can you find information about the payment amount, payment possibilities and bank account data? ↓

You will find all of the information on the letter. However you can also check it online on the website of the public broadcasting services (German only).

Is there any possibility to get exemption for the payment? ↓

Generally there are almost no possibilities to get an exemption - also exchange students and scholars must pay the fee.

There is the possibility to apply for exemption and reduction if you BAföG. also due to certain health reasons (disabilities) you can get exemption. Please inform yourself about the websites of the public broadcasting fees (German only).

Should you move to a person who already pays the broadcast licence fees or you would like to de-register your appartment for example when you go back to your home country - please use this form (German only).

You live in a shared apartment? Good for you! ↓

If you share an apartment with others (which is 1 household) only one adult person needs to be registered and pay the fee. The other flatmates need to inform the authority that they live in a shared apartment with a person who is already registered any pays the fees. You can do it online or via letter - both ways you need to name the paying person an her/his id-number. You can do it using this online form (German only).
Please note that there is an obligation to pay compensation among each other to the person who pays the fee - so you split the fee for all home mates and pay your part back to the registered person.

What can happen if you do not register or do not pay the fee after receiving the letter? ↓

If you do not react to that request and the later on to the payment, you will first receive a reminder from the contribution service (Beitragsservice). Afterwards the outstanding broadcasting license fees are assessed by the regional broadcasting corporation and an assessment is issued. This assessment is enforceable at law and can be enforced by the regional enforcement authority or the court bailiff if there is no payment to the stated deadline. You can get in serious difficulties if that happens.

In case you have already debts, you can repay them in installments.

It is of the utmost importance to pay the public broadcasting license fees regularly and on time since you can expect much higher fees otherwise!

What should you do in case you change your address, your name or your bank account data? ↓

Should you change your name, address, bank details or the method of payment, you can use this form (German only) to change your contribution account details.

Should you move to a person who already pays the broadcast license fees or you would like to de-register your appartment for example when you go back to your home country - please use this form (German only).

What should you do in case you move back to your home country? ↓

Should you move back to your home country or any other countries in the world please use this form (German only)to de-register from public broadcasting fees.

On the right side you will find a PDF document with many FAQs and answers - please ready it carefully for more information on that topic.

Should you have any questions regarding the public broadcasting license fees do not hesitate to contact us at the International Office.