Health Care


Since 1 January 2009, health insurance is mandatory for everyone planning to reside in Germany. Even those who wish to reside in Germany for a short time, otherwise requests for visas will be denied.


The dual system [public health insurance (GKV) and private health insurance (PKV)] characterizes the German health insurance system. While almost every applicant is eligible for public health insurance, different conditions apply for private health insurance.

Membership in the public insurance scheme is mandatory for some groups such as:  

  • Employees (gross income below the income threshold for statutory insurance)
  • Pensioners
  • Recipients of social welfare benefits


The following groups of people typically have private health insurance: 

  • Civil service workers
  • The self-employed and freelancers
  • Employees (gross income above the income threshold for statutory insurance / For 2014 = 48.600€)


Public health insurance is based on the principle of solidarity meaning that everyone insured pays 15.5 per cent of the respective gross income. Premiums are calculated up to the so-called “social security contribution celling” and will be deducted from the salary and transferred to the health insurance company. Every publicly insured person receives medical care services, the scope of which is determined by the state. Moreover, insuring children and spouses free within a family insurance plan is only possible with statutory health insurance.


Private health insurance is not available for everyone and is taken out by those who are not insured by or free from statutory health insurance.

Fees are based on personal health situation, age and the selected coverage.
The scope of services from private insurance companies is not regulated by the state and is often more extensive than statutory insurance. Services can also be adapted for each policyholder individually.


Supplemental insurance policies serve to close gaps in health insurance. Conclusion of supplemental insurance occurs with a private insurance company – independent of income. Important types of supplemental insurance include for instance nursing care insurance, dental insurance, vision insurance and alternative practitioner insurance.

IMPORTANT: For applicatants planning to reside in Germany, please contact us as early as possible to make sure all necessary paper work is dealth with before arrival.

 Apply for German health caverage here