As an expat coming to Germany, you should know that registering for health insurance is one of the most important things you need to take care of before moving to the country. Health insurance is compulsory for everyone living in Germany. Therefore, if you’re planning to bring your relatives with you, we would like to offer you all the information on how to insure your family in Germany.
How does family insurance work in Germany?
First of all, you should know that there are two main types of health insurance in Germany: public health insurance (or statutory health insurance) and private health insurance (usually known as PKV in German). No matter what kind of insurance you’re registered at, all family members must also be insured.
The German health care system includes certain regulations for family insurance in order to make sure that everyone is equally covered. There is a so-called family co-insurance, in which dependent family members, such as spouses and children, are eligible to enrol for free with the health insurance provider in which the main family member is already insured. This is due to the fact that it is common for family members to remain unemployed for a while after they move to Germany.
Who can benefit from free family co-insurance?
Expats’ partners who receive no income or an income that does not exceed 470 euros per month (as of 2022) are eligible for this aid. In addition, partners who earn 450 euros with a part-time job or find themselves under marginal employment can also be covered at no cost.
Children are normally insured free of charge until they reach the age of 18. However, this age limit might be raised under certain conditions:
- If they are unemployed, they can be insured up to 23 years old.
- If they are still enrolled in school, vocational training or are doing voluntary programs, they can be insured up to 25 years old.
- If their education was interrupted by military or civilian service, they can be insured over 25 years old.
- Permanently disabled children do not have an age limit to be covered free of charge.
What are the steps to insure your family in Germany?
Regardless of your relatives’ situation, you will have to fill in and send a form to your health insurance provider to include them in your insurance coverage. In this form, you have to specify the members you want to include, their previous economic situation and their current incomes.
If the family members you are planning to bring to Germany will work in the country, you will have to pay additional costs to insure them. In order to calculate the premium you will pay as a family, your health insurance will evaluate your partner’s gross salary as an employee, including regular annual bonuses; their income as freelancers (if applicable) and their income from investments, rentals or similar, as well as those coming from retirement insurance.
However, this is something your health insurance provider will take care of. You don’t need to worry about anything!
What kinds of insurance should families have?
As a rule of thumb, you should insure everything that could put you in an existential risk as a family. There is a list of different insurances that are not compulsory in Germany, but highly recommended for families.
- Liability insurance. If you cause damage to someone else, you will be liable for it. In the worst case, this could lead to financial problems. The price you pay for this insurance is usually around 40-60 euros a year, which is why most families opt for it.
- Disability insurance. Occupational disability insurance covers you if you lose your income due to occupational disability.
- Term life insurance. Term life insurance secures the family income if one parent dies.
- Homeowners insurance. Homeowners insurance offers homeowners protection in the event of damage that could threaten their property or assets (e.g. storm, lightning, explosion, etc.). We only recommend this type of insurance if you own a house.
- Objects insurance. Household objects insurance covers damage to the contents of your flat or house.
We hope that this article helped you understand how to insure your family in Germany. If you want to find out more information, do not hesitate to schedule a call with our insurance experts at MW Expat.