Gas and district heating customers as well as pensioners can breathe a sigh of relief in December. They receive financial grants, which many people receive in December. We show what changes are coming in December, who benefits from the grants and by when the Christmas mail should actually be sent out.

There are a few changes for December and new laws that will come into force at the end of the year. Some bring financial relief, which is welcome in times of rising living costs and the energy crisis. Pensioners receive an energy flat rate and gas customers receive a one-time subsidy. We offer you an overview of all new laws, changes and deadlines for December 2022 here:

There has been a lot of discussion in the Bundestag in recent weeks about relieving gas customers. Ultimately, it was decided to provide emergency aid for private customers and small businesses that purchase gas or district heating.

In concrete terms, this regulation means that the state will pay the down payment once in December.

If the provider usually collects the discount, customers do not have to take over anything. The December deduction will not be withdrawn. If customers normally transfer the advance payment, they can cancel the order for December.

Unfortunately, tenants who bill their landlord for gas or district heating may have to be patient. They do not receive their emergency aid in December, but as a credit with the next utility bill

Various energy flat rates have been agreed as part of the relief packages, one of which is due in the last month of the year.

Almost 20 million people in Germany receive a statutory old-age, reduced earning capacity, orphan’s or widow’s pension or pension payments under the Civil Service and Soldiers’ Pensions Act. They can look forward to an energy flat rate of over 300 euros, which will be paid out by December 15th.

The money is transferred automatically and does not have to be requested. A German residence is required.

At 11 a.m. on December 8th, German mobile phone users get loud: A loud signal tone sounds on the smartphone and a warning SMS flashes. This is a disaster drill controlled by the Cell Broadcast system.

Mobile phone users in 294 administrative districts and 107 urban districts received the warning. The exercise is automatic, no app needs to be downloaded.

Deutsche Bahn will publish its new winter timetable on December 11th. The main change here is the number of journeys and trains.

Thanks to the new high-speed route between Wendlingen and Ulm, not only are more journeys offered, but connections between Cologne and Munich are around 15 minutes faster.

The new ICE 3neo will also be used on the route between Munich, Cologne and Dortmund.

60 percent more seats on the route from Munich to Frankfurt Airport via Ulm and Stuttgart and on the route from Bremen to Cologne via Osnabrück and Münster bring relief for rail customers.

Since March 2022, the institution-related vaccination obligation for clinics, practices and nursing services has been in force in paragraph 20a of the Infection Protection Act. Since then, all employees have had to provide proof of full corona vaccination. If they cannot do this, fines or even dismissal can be threatened.

This obligation will end automatically at the end of the year if Karl Lauterbach does not take action after all. Since the Minister of Health has been very reluctant so far, the obligation to vaccinate facilities could expire. This change is possible because the current corona variants trigger a comparatively mild course.

Deutsche Post and DHL have published their deadlines for the Christmas mail to arrive on time:

The Federal Office for Radiation Protection has decreed that from December 31, beauticians may only remove hair and tattoos by laser or IPL if they can present proof of specialist knowledge. This change also applies to all applications with light, ultrasound or high frequency.

The “Ordinance on the protection against harmful effects of non-ionizing radiation when used on humans” of the Federal Office for Radiation Protection also regulates that devices must be registered before they are used for the first time, as well as a documentation and notification obligation.

This year, the ban on firecrackers will be lifted almost everywhere. After both the sale and the firing of rockets were almost completely banned in the last two years, we can celebrate again this year.

But be careful: In some cities, communities and municipalities, ban zones are set up in which no fireworks may be lit. It is therefore advisable to inform yourself in advance in your municipality.

Anyone who submits a voluntary tax return has four years to do so. This can be submitted for 2018 by December 31, 2022. The tax office still accepts the declaration by post or online via “Elster”.

You can read about what has changed in the last few months here.