South Korea has an increasing amount of support available for single mothers. It’s not only available to Koreans, but also to foreigners whose children are South Korean citizens. So, if you find yourself raising a child in Korea without a partner, here are the basics on how to get government assistance.
How to Apply for Support
There are two ways that you can apply for government support for single mothers in Korea. First, you can apply online at 복지로(bokjiro.go.kr). Or, you can apply at your local community center (주민센터).
- Application for social services and salary provision (사회 복지서비스 및 급여 제공(변경) 신청서)
- Consent to provide financial information (금융정보 등 제공 동의서)
- Certified Copy of Registration (제적등본)
- A Lease Agreement (임대차 계약서)
- Income and property verification documents (소득,재산 확인서류)
- Power of attorney and identification documents (위임장 및 신분확인서류)
- Copy of the application for confirmation of birth registration of a biological child (친생자 출생신고 확인신청 소장 사본(해당가구에 한함))
- ( If male) Genetic test results (유전자 검사결과(해당가구에 한함))
- (If applies) Evidence of independence activities of single-parent youth (청소년한부모 자립활동 증빙서류(필요시))
- (If under 25) Application for the Promotion of Support for the Independence of Single Parents for Juveniles (청소년한부모 자립지원 촉진 신청서)
Additional Documents for Education Benefits
These documents are for school expenses support ONLY:
(Before selection: Attach a final certificate of academic background or a certificate of enrollment)
*선정 후 : 청소년한부모 검정고시 등 학습지원 신청서
(After selection: Application for learning support such as the youth single parent qualification examination)
고교 재학증명서 (a high school certificate)
Starting this year, the income standard for “temporary emergency support for child support” paid to single-parent families who are not receiving child support has been eased.
Income standards have been eased to ease the burden of raising single parents who are struggling financially because they do not receive the child support they need to receive.
Currently, those receiving 52% or less of the national median income are eligible to receive assistance. In 2022, the amount was 2,069,600 Won per month. However, for parents under 24 years of age, those receiving 60% or less of the national median income are eligible to receive assistance, aka 238,800,000 Won per month.
Classifications of Single-Parent Households
There are three types of households eligible for single-parent family support, and the following are as follows.
Types of Single-parent Home Support recipients:
① Single Parent Family (mother and child family & father and child family) 한부모가족(모자가족 및 부자가족)
* In the case where an unmarried, single father, the father must submit genetic test results before the birth registration of the child.
② Grandparent Family
*Grandparent families are when children are raised by a grandparent due to circumstances in which the child’s parents cannot support their children. Circumstances include: divorce, abandonment, incarceration, disappearance, death, economic reasons, etc.
*Property, land, and housing are excluded from income calculation
③ Single Youth Parent Family
* A single-parent family in which the guardian is under 24 years of age
Available Benefits for Single Mothers & Fathers in Korea
- Child support expenses ( 아동 양육비 ): 200,000 Won per month, per child until 18.
- Additional 50,000 Won per month for children whose guardians are over 35, while the children are under 5 years of age.
- Additional 50,000 to 100,000 Won per month for children whose guardians are 25 to 34 years old
- School expenses: 83,000 Korean Won per year for children enrolled in middle school and high school.
- Living Subsidy: 50,000 Won per month
Available Benefits for Young Single Parents
There are additional benefits for single-family households in which the guardian is under 25 years old. These benefits are also based on income.
- Instead of 200,000 Won, guardians under 25 are eligible to receive 350,000 Won per month.
- Learning Support (검정고시 등 학습지원): Up to 1.54 million per year. This money is meant to help prepare for qualification exams.
- High School Education Fee (고교생 교육비): Where the guardian in a single-parent household are juveniles in high school, they can receive a subsidy of up to 5 million Won for tuition and admission fees.
- Self Reliance Allowance ( 자립촉진수당): 100,000 Won for those who are employed or engaged in self-reliance activities.
My conclusion is that those benefits are very goodbecause, and I am glad foreigners also have access. When I first came to Korea in 2018 they did not have any of these benefits for single parents, but in 2021 may they started with the benefits for single parents. I’m glad that women’s voices are being heard and that single parents are going to be helped in Korea.
I have many friends who are single mothers, but they ended up returning to their home countries because they weren’t able to access these benefits. It is very sad as their children will grow up with little connection to the Korean culture as a result of it. It is better for both the children and their families that they are able to remain here and get assistance.
Want to learn more about maternity benefits in South Korea? Click Here to learn about birthing subsidies and medical fee benefits!