What happens with too much money in the P account? (your options now)

At a garnishment protection account or P account, the monthly receipt of money is limited to the allowance. The common opinion is that money on the P account above the attachment exemption amount is immediately attached. But that's not true. The money will namely only on a disbursement account rebooked. The payment account is a sub-account of the garnishment protection account. In this article you will find out what happens with too much money in the P account and when there is no longer protection against seizure. In addition, we also deal with the topic of unused transfer credit on the P account to the following month. From December 2021 there will be changed case law, which will be advantageous for debtors. In addition, the two topics are often confused.

There are 2 similar cases with different jurisprudence when asking the question "What happens with too much money in the P account?" can easily be confused:

If the P-account allowance is exceeded, things usually get tricky and quick but careful action is required. If you want to know What options do you have to get your money, you will find out in the article P-account allowance exceeded: "How do I get my money?". There you will receive recommendations for action as well as assessments of the risks for the question "How do I get my money?" if the P account allowance is exceeded. There you will find out which switches you can flip and how to get your money.

What happens with too much money in the P account?

If you have exceeded the allowance on the P account, the bank will not send the money directly to the creditor. Instead, the money above the exempt amount goes into a separate pot - the disbursement account. Here the money is still protected from access by creditors. However, as a debtor, you cannot access it either. The balance of the payment account is paid out as income to the P account in the next month. If the income in the following month is again above the tax-free amount, the bank keeps the difference via the payment account. If your income does not decrease, the payout account will eventually exceed the allowance. Legally, this is considered "too much money on the P account" and therefore the bank then pays out the excess to the creditors.

Was genau passiert mit zuviel Geld auf dem P-Konto?

Wenn du in einem Monat mehr Geld erhältst als den P-Konto Freibetrag, wird das Geld im Folgemonat zunächst für beide Parteien auf dem Auskehrungskonto gesperrt. Erst wenn der Betrag auf dem Auskehrungskonto den Freibetrag überschreitet geht das Geld an den Gläubiger.

What happens with too much money in the P account?
What happens with too much money in the P account? If the P account incoming money is higher than the exempt amount, the money will only be paid out to the creditor if the payment account exceeds the exempt amount - not the P account itself. The money remains protected on this account for the time being.

Fließt das überschüssige Geld direkt an die Gläubiger ab?

In order to avoid the outflow of excess money, you can apply for a higher allowance (P account form), reduce your income or a Open a new account despite seizure, that serves for your non-essential expenses.

There is only too much money in the P-account and the bank seizes the excess if the payout account has more credit than the exempt amount. Since the garnishment is postponed by moving the money to an additional sub-account, it is also called a Payment Moratorium or deferred payment. The paragraphs provide the legal basis for the point in time when “too much money is in the P account”. 835 Code of Civil Procedure and 850k ZPO, which describe what has just been explained in the finest legal German.

A simple example of what happens with too much money on the P account

For example, if you have an allowance of €1,252.64 and a net income of €1,900, €647.36 (€1,900 – €1,252.64) will flow into the payout account in the first month. The bank then only pays out the exempt amount of €1252.64 to your P account.

In the second month, with the same earnings, another €647.36 flows into the payout account. You will again receive €1252.64 on the P account to cover your living expenses. However, there is now a total of €1294.72 (2 x €647.36) on the payment account, which is above the allowance of €1252.64. Therefore, the bank pays the difference of €42.08 (€1294.72 – €1252.64) to the creditor.

in the post Open a P account: information, tips and tricks you can find a current one garnishment table. Here you can read which amounts can be protected on the seizure protection account.


What happens if the P account cash receipt higher as the allowance is?

If the P account cash receipt higher than the exempt amount, the money initially flows into a separately managed money pot. this is that disbursement account. The bank does not seize the excess money immediately. Instead, the bank first accumulates the money in the separate money pot. Only when this pot of money exceeds the allowance does the bank seize the money.

The money on the payout account is initially from creditor access protected. However you can don't even have access to it. Instead, it is "paid out" to you as income the following month. If you are below the allowance in the following month, your income will be offset by the money from the payout account increased up to the exempt amount. The rest remains in the withdrawal account.

Neither debtors nor creditors can access the separate payment account. It only serves to protect the debtor if his income falls in the coming months.

If, in the following month, you again have an incoming payment above the garnishment exemption amount on the P account, the sum on the payment account increases until the amount of money exceeds the exemption amount. The bank pays this surplus to the creditor. This means that twice the allowance (on the P account as a monthly protected incoming payment + the buffer on the payment account) is protected from access by creditors. However, you can only dispose of the simple tax-free amount yourself, since neither the debtor nor the creditor can withdraw money from the payment account.

The following graphic - which was already shown above - illustrates what happens when the Incoming money on the P account higher as the allowance is.

What happens with too much money in the P account?
If the P account incoming money is higher than the exemption amount, the money will only be paid out to the creditor if the payment account exceeds the exemption amount.

Balance on the P account below the garnishment exemption carried over to the next month

You can transfer unused credit on the P account to the next month. this is that second topic of this post, which you should not confuse with the former. In a way, this is also “too much money in the P account” – because you have more money in the P account than you need to live in one month. The difference to the first case is that when moving balances to the next month below the allowance stay So you only use protected money. Shouldn't that be a problem since the money is protected by the allowance? Unfortunately, things are not that simple. If you Credit on the P account below the garnishment exemption amount want to transfer to the next month, it works like this:

Unverbrauchtes Guthaben auf dem P-Konto in den nächsten Monat hinübernehmen - Ohne Abführung an Schuldner bis 3 Monate
Too much money in the P account? Since December 2021, the legislator has allowed a carryover to 3 subsequent months.

You can only transfer money on the P account amount to the following month a maximum of 3 times. The transferred money is then available at the beginning of the following month. This limit also applies to credit balances below the garnishment exemption amount. If you transfer the money to the following month for the fourth time, it will be attached - even though your income was below the attachment allowance. When the money is available if you have exceeded the P account allowance, you can find out in the linked article.

Unverbrauchtes Guthaben auf dem P-Konto in den nächsten Monat hinübernehmen - Mit Abführung an Schuldner wenn öfter als 3x über Monatsgrenze transferiert wird
From the fourth month, the money transferred is seized. Although it is a protected balance, the legislator perceives it as "too much money in the P account"

New regulation since December 1st, 2021

If you receive two salary payments in one month (e.g. due to late payment) the money above the exempt amount is initially blocked. However, you can still use the money in the following 3 months if you stay below the allowance.

This regulation has been in effect since December 1st, 2021 and is in im § 899 paragraph 2 sentence 1 ZPO to find. With the old regulation (before 1.12.2021) after § 850k paragraph 1 sentence 3 ZPO it was only possible to save for the following month. The new regulation makes it easier for debtors to save up a reserve. In addition, as a debtor, you are better protected if you receive double salary in one month (e.g. due to late payment). You can now transfer twice the salary for 3 months instead of just one month. Nevertheless, it is advisable to withdraw the money, as the bank has often made mistakes when transferring it to the following months.

In this post you will find easy-to-understand explanations of what happens when you double your salary in one month. This can happen due to a late wage payment from your employer in the following month. You should know the general conditions, since a double salary payment can lead to the seizure of actually protected assets.
Achtung beim übertragen von unverbrauchtes Guthaben auf dem P-Konto in den nächsten Monat.
Be careful when transferring credit across monthly boundaries in the P account!

Attention: When transferring unused credit on the P account to the next month. From the fourth money transfer into the following month, the bank will also seize protected credit! In our example, the transfer from month 1 to month 2 in the amount of €50 is seized at the change of month from month 4 to month 5, as it has already been transferred three times before.

Example of transferring credit on the P account below the garnishment exemption in the next month

Petra Keller is single and has no other maintenance obligations. She has a P account and would like to save money for a new washing machine because the old one is already making strange noises when spinning. According to garnishment table standing Petra 1252,64 € to allowance. Petra works at a building cleaning. Your monthly income is €1,100. Petra is thus below the garnishment exemption and does not have to cede any income to creditors.

Guthaben für eine Anschaffung eine Waschmaschine mit dem P-Konto ansparen? Ein heikles Unterfangen, bei dem schnell gepfändet werden kann.
Save credit for purchasing a washing machine with the P account? A tricky undertaking that can quickly be seized

If Petra now wants to buy a washing machine, she can put some money aside for it every month. However, Petra should not wait too long with the purchase. Because if the money is taken over more than three times in the next month, the bank seizes it. The table below shows that with a monthly saving of €50, Petra can save a maximum of €200 in washing machine credits. Because everything about it is seized by the bank. However, according to both the old and the new regulation, it is advisable to withdraw the money immediately at the end of the month in order to avoid problems with the accumulation of credit on the P account.

Be careful when accumulating credit on the P account

It is legally possible to accumulate credit on the garnishment protection account and, according to the new regulation, to transfer it to the following month for three months from December 1st, 2021. You can see this in the table below. However, it also comes after the new regulation at the fourth transfer in the following month to transfer the money to the creditors. Provided the bank is honest with you and knows the rules. But more on that later.

The table compares the transfer of credit on the P account to the following month according to the new and old rules.

 New regulation from 1.12. 2021Old regulation until 1.12. 2021

month 1

New regulation from 1.12. 2021
Credit transferred to the following month:
50 €
Thereof seized:

0 €

Total saved credit at the end of the month:

50 €

______________________________________________________
Old regulation until 1.12. 2021
Credit transferred to the following month:
50 €
Thereof seized:

0 €

Total saved credit at the end of the month:

50 €

month 2

New regulation from 1.12. 2021
Credit transferred to the following month:
50 €
Thereof seized:

0 €

Total saved credit at the end of the month:

100 €

______________________________________________________
Old regulation until 1.12. 2021
Credit transferred to the following month:
50 €
Thereof seized:

0 €

Total saved credit at the end of the month:

100 €

month 3

New regulation from 1.12. 2021
Credit transferred to the following month:
50 €
Thereof seized:

0 €

Total saved credit at the end of the month:

150 €

______________________________________________________
Old regulation until 1.12. 2021
Credit transferred to the following month:
50 €
Thereof seized:

50 €

Total saved credit at the end of the month:

100 €

month 4

New regulation from 1.12. 2021
Credit transferred to the following month:
50 €
Thereof seized:

0 €

Total saved credit at the end of the month:

200 €

______________________________________________________
Old regulation until 1.12. 2021
Credit transferred to the following month:
50 €
Thereof seized:

50 €


100 € (total)

Total saved credit at the end of the month:

100 €

month 5

New regulation from 1.12. 2021
Credit transferred to the following month:
50 €
Thereof seized:

50 €

Total saved credit at the end of the month:

200 €

______________________________________________________
Old regulation until 1.12. 2021
Credit transferred to the following month:
50 €
Thereof seized:

50 €


150 € (total)

Total saved credit at the end of the month:

100 €

month 6

New regulation from 1.12. 2021
Credit transferred to the following month:
50 €
Thereof seized:

50 €


100 € (total)

Total saved credit at the end of the month:

200 €

______________________________________________________
Old regulation until 1.12. 2021
Credit transferred to the following month:
50 €
Thereof seized:

50 €


200 € (total)

Total saved credit at the end of the month:

100 €

However, if you want to transfer €50 in the first month and then transfer €50 again to the following month in the following 3 months, there may be confusion as to whether the €50 is from the first, second, third or fourth month. Technically, the bank can easily determine the origin of the money using the FIFO principle (first in first out), but there was Commerzbank P account problems in this regard in the past. The Commerzbank paid the money to the creditors too early. As already described, the new regulation also applies:

It is advisable to withdraw the money before the end of the month in order to avoid problems when transferring funds to the P account in the following month.

In the past, the bank often paid money to creditors too early. Once the deferral was over, some banks returned the entire surplus to creditors. Although the amounts actually came from the second month (the old rule still applied).

Die rechtliche Lage ist eindeutig. Dennoch halten sich nicht alle Banken an die Regelungen beim P-Konto. Wenn du dich jetzt also fragst bei welcher Bank du ein für ein P-Konto ohne Bedenken eröffnen kannst, findest du in einem anderen Artikel unsere P-Konto Bestenliste.

If you have too much money in the P account, you can protect your money despite seizure

Wenn du zu viel Geld auf deinem P-Konto hast, solltest du dir Gedanken darüber machen, wie du es vor dem Zugriff der Gläubiger schützen kannst. Dadurch gerätst du selbst nicht in finanzeille Not.

In the article "Open an account against garnishment: Open a new account despite garnishment?“ you will learn an alternative way of proceeding to keep your money safe from creditors. In the linked article you will also find instructions on how to use P-accounts from pay center* or N26* can open a P-account despite debts. You can find the advantages and disadvantages of banks that offer P accounts without a Schufa check in the article "Open a P account – which bank?"

In particular, if your house bank has already rejected the application to open a P account, you will find in the two articles "Open a new account despite seizure?" and "Open a P account – which bank?" alternative options with checking accounts without a Schufa connection.

When does the money in the P account go to the creditor?

In order to answer the question "When does the money in the P account go to the creditor?" the following cases must be distinguished:

  1. Your receipt of money on the garnishment protection account is higher than the exemption amount. For example, you have an income of €1,900 and an exempt amount of €1,252.64 (exempt amount 2021 for singles without maintenance obligations). The surplus above the exempt amount first goes to the payout account, where it is temporarily parked. The money only goes to the creditor if the payment account exceeds the exempt amount. These are moratorium amounts according to Section 900 Paragraphs 1 and 2 ZPO.
  2. But even if you have unused credit on the P account below the garnishment exemption you want to carry over to the following month, you have to be careful. Because with the fourth transfer into the following month, the money in the P account goes to the creditor. An example of this is a person with an income of €1,100 who saves €50 a month. If this person starts leaving €50 in the P account in January, the amount will not be attached in February, March and April. However, if she takes the €50 with her to May, the money goes to the creditor. From a legal point of view, these are takeover amounts according to Section 899 (2) ZPO.
In the embedded post you will find an answer when the money goes to the creditor. We consider the different boundary conditions of the cash outflow to the creditor moratorium amounts and transfer amounts.

P-account receipt of money higher than the allowance: what to do?

If the incoming money on the P account is higher than the exempt amount, the money will flow to the creditor in 2 months at the latest. To avoid this, you could:

  • Reduce your income and work less, because the excess money is not available to you anyway
  • Deinen Freibetrag erhöhen. Hierzu fragst du bei deiner Bank nach dem P-Konto Formular und füllst es am Besten gemeinsam mit einer debt advice out of.
  • Also, you could have one Open a new account despite seizure. If it is an account without Schufa, other creditors will not be informed. You use this account for all non-essential expenses, or to be able to quickly pay money for a later settlement with the creditors in court. You should discuss the procedure with a debt counselor beforehand.
  • You can find more tips and more backgrounds and graphics in the post P-account allowance exceeded: "How do I get my money"?

Quickly answered: Related questions on the topic "What happens with too much money in the P account"

What happens to money in excess of the exempt amount in the P account?

If, in the following month, you again have an incoming payment above the garnishment exemption amount on the P account, the sum on the payment account increases until the amount of money exceeds the exemption amount. Only this surplus is paid out to the creditor. In this way, the double allowance is protected from access by creditors. However, you can only dispose of the simple tax-free allowance yourself.

P account allowance exceeded: How do I get my money?

If the exempt amount for the P account is exceeded, the money goes to the payout account. Neither you nor the creditor has access to it. You can only dispose of the money from this pot of money if your monthly income is below the allowance. Alternatively, you can apply for an increase in the exempt amount in order to get your money from the payment account in the following month.

How much money can you have in a P account?

You can only have the free amount of money on a P account. Higher cash receipts go to the payout account. You can find the current allowances in this garnishment table on the page “Open a P account: information, tips and tricks”

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