when you only have 4 months left you will NOT be able to get the same benefits as if you have had been (free) student member for one year.
This means you must use the "normal" rule for graduates, this means that you get unemployment benefits from 1 month after you finish education.
If you have had been member for one year before finish study you would get benefits from day 1 after finish study.
At this point you can decide to apply for membership now.
Although you can NOT sign up for the normal free student-membership, your membership will be free until you graduate.
We will advise you to sign up now, but regarding benefits it will be the same if you wait until AT LATEST 14 DAYS after finish study.
About our recommendations at our site: If you have less than 6 months left the most A-kasser will consider your membership/status as graduate (not student).
But if you apply now you must be sure to check what status you get in your A-kasse. If you have NOT status as graduate then you must remember to change your
status when finish study. It is important regarding your rights to get benefits as an graduate.