What does "TV-L (E14, 100% position)" mean in terms of gross and net pay? What lifestyle does this buy you in Berlin?

This is in the context of a postdoc at a research institute.

  • 2
    Have you seen this similar question: What is a “TV-L 13” position?. It looks like the answer should still be helpful. Commented Mar 30, 2015 at 23:02
  • That other page tells me that there is a civil servant payscale, but all of the links are to pages in German, which don't translate well using google
    – user32014
    Commented Mar 30, 2015 at 23:15
  • Again not a direct answer, but one of the best ways to find out would be to contact the university and ask. Commented Mar 30, 2015 at 23:17
  • This would be straightforward advice to someone mulling an offer, but is less useful to those in earlier stages of the application process.
    – user32014
    Commented Mar 30, 2015 at 23:21
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    Some time ago I answered a similar question about TV-L E13 positions, where I tried to explain how to navigate the civil servant payscale linked in the previously mentioned answer. Mutatis mutandis, the information should be applicable to E14 positions as well. Commented Dec 20, 2015 at 19:10

2 Answers 2


You are right that TV-L is a civil servant payscale. Postdocs commonly are placed in the E-13 or E-14 scale, where the latter is higher (but usually comes with more responsibilities). The gross pay starts at just under 3579.34 EUR per month for Berlin. Very recently the pay scales have been renegotiated, so I believe it might have gone up a bit. This amount is the first step in the scale, depending on your experience you might start at a higher step.

The net amount depends on your specific circumstances, for example if you are married and if you are a member of a church. For single persons that are not registered with a church the net amount is around 2100 EUR a month. This includes health insurance. You should be able to live decently in Berlin for this money.

The details can be found on the Öffentlicher Dienst website (in German, but you would want the table at the bottom).

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    Two additions: E14 is usually applied when you have responsibility for people, meaning you are a group leader but not yet a professor (supervising a PhD student although your professor is the official supervisor does not count here). Besides health insurance also unemployment insurance is included and contributions to a pension fund is made.
    – Heike R
    Commented Mar 31, 2015 at 12:38

(This is maybe more suited to be a comment than an answer, but I don't have enough reputation to leave comments.)

About the phrase "100% position" in your question: This means that once you have followed the instructions in other answers and comments to identify the amount of money which corresponds to E14 on the TV-L payscale, then your gross pay is 100% of the amount labelled Brutto, and your net pay is 100% of the amount labelled Netto.

The reason this is explicitly stated is because other types of positions, such as 50% position or 65% position, also exist. I don't believe this is ever the case for postdocs, but it's the norm for PhD students. For example, a PhD student might have a "TV-L (El3, 50% position)", meaning that after one identifies the amount in the TV-L table corresponding to E13, the gross pay is only 50% of that amount.

A tip for reading these German payscale tables: the levels E1 to E15 are related to what sort of job it is and how qualified you are. PhDs and postdocs are at the E13 and E14 levels. For each of these levels, there are sub-levels 1 to 5 or 6, relating to how long you have occupied a position at this level. Over the years, you progress automatically up these levels 1 to 5 or 6

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