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  1. I can apply for my German pension soon, but I am not sure if I can be a pflichtmitglied in the health insurance (that should mean lower deductions). I am freiwillig versichert now. (That is not the same as privat versichert, fortunately).   You need to have been krankenversichert for 9/10 of the second half of your working life. Working life ends when you apply for a pension, but when does it begin? My Renteninfo shows contributions starting on my 17th birthday, is that the start?
  2. Hopefully my question makes sense! I'm an American and have only just realized it's nearly impossible to get health insurance coverage as a 30-year-old student with a pre-existing condition (although it's stabilized.) From what I'm reading, the Basistarif is an option, but I'm not 100% clear on if this is both very expensive and provides adequate coverage, or just expensive. To be honest, it is still cheaper than going to school in the US would be. I was wondering if a possible work around would be to work for 1-2 years (or more? Not sure if there's an established rule) first, which would allow me to get public coverage - but would that coverage be upheld if I decided to become a student? How easy is it for public insurance to be revoked? Would really appreciate any guidance. This is something I've been working towards for a long time and am very crushed to realize it might not come to fruition. Contacted a couple of brokers known on the forum so going that route, as well.
  3. Hello, My wife came to Germany about 4 years ago. Till October 2021 when she started a master degree, she was looking for a job and since I had (and still have) a private health insurance as a fulltime employee, we used Expatcare Classic from Mawista as her health insurance. She was with this health insurance for almost whole of last 4 years till the end of February 2022. In between just for 4 months, she used health insurance from AOK because she had a temporary job with a salary under the threshold. For March 2022, we didn't extend her insurance because she was in our home country from middle of Feb. till end of March 2022. Now we are looking for a new health insurance for her. Since she is student, over 30 years old and is in Germany for more than 4 years, which health insure do you suggest?   * Should we still use a cheap private health (travel) insurance like Care Expatriate from CareConcept for next couple of months (till almost end of the year when it will be 5 years from the time she came to Germany) and then looking for another health insurance at that time?   * Supposed we took Care Expatriate, if she could find a student job or internship in between, can she easily switch to a public health insurance with some contribution from her employer? Here maybe I should mention that she has a family reunion visa not student visa!   Thank you so much in advance for your help.
  4. Hi guys,   I've been officially registered in Berlin as my Hauptwohnsitz (main residence) since October 2015. I have no health insurance and have not been employed or earning any income.   N.B. Any quick responses are appreciated as I may need to tell my new employer today to hold off on getting me my first German social security number if indeed this will open Pandora's box. See below.   Questions:   -Is there a particular Krankenkasse I can sign up to not back-charge me for two years of no health insurance? - Or can I now sign up with a cheap foreign health insurance company (i.e. UK based) to either just count as my ongoing insurance or to present to my upcoming Krankenkasse so that they don't think I have been uninsured and maybe then don't back-charge me? - If I do end up having to pay back-charges, how much will that be based on no income? (I'm still actually registered in the UK as a freelancer but have submitted £0 tax returns for a couple of years) - Today I am signing up with Deliveroo as a freelance bike courier. I have to get a Gewerbeschien for that. If I cancel the Foodora job and just take the Deliveroo freelancer job, can I stay off the health insurance radar? - Whether I work for Foodora and Deliveroo or just Deliveroo, does the fact that I will probably be only earning under €1500 mean my health insurance premiums will be only circa €150 per month from now on? (Presuming I don't just take some kind of cheap foreign health insurance?   Useful background info:   I am from the UK where the NHS just happens automatically, so obligatory health insurance is unfamiliar to me. I have not been employed or earning any money while I have been in Germany. I have just been using savings to renovate a mixed use Gewerbeeinheit property where I have been living, with the aim of setting up a business in the property, maybe.   Money is nearly out, so, yesterday, I signed an employment contract with Foodora for circa €850 per month as a bike courier to keep me afloat financially while I renovate. Today I will also sign up with Deliveroo on a freelance basis to earn roughly €15 per hour for a number of hours of my choosing on top of Foodora.   I wasn't sure if I would be in Germany for long at all at first and don't plan to be here for more than the next 3-4 years, so health insurance into old age is not an issue for me. I have just attended to any health queries on my visits to the UK for the moment, but that seems untenable for the next few years, so heath insurance would be a plus, but not if it is just asking for trouble.   Toytown research:   N.B. I have read a few similar posts and feel a new post is worthwhile as the useful posts I found were old and things change. I'm particularly hoping that @PandaMunich and @Starshollow or @john g.may have some good input. There was talk in earlier posts by @john g. of Central stopping but then reverting to back-charging, which seemed particularly relevant: From @lightcycle: "A friend of mine recently got health insurance with AOK after two years of no insurance, she asked them if they were going to back-charge her for that time and they said "no, we don't do that anymore". Anyone heard anything similar? Have they really stopped the back-charging nonsense?"   From @john g. "lightcycle: that´s interesting! I´m surprised but glad! I work in the insurance business and I know there´s one private health insurer which is no longer enforcing backpayments. Where will it lead? Don´t know...we´ve been through this before. A big private insurer, Central, did this in 2009 and got a lot of business. I know I got people insured there for that very reason. Then other private insurers got annoyed - as did the Govt. Central had to backtrack. The whole issue is absurd - how can you backcharge people for services they haven´t had? Bloody ridiculous."   Thanks for your help! It is appreciated!   Related posts I have viewed:   Good overall wiki article by Patrick Ott (@StarsHollow):   A very relevant yet old and long post widely discussed by key Toytown players (as quoted above):   Some relevant info from the UK gov:   Short but sweet on a similar topic:   A guy sadly getting slagged off for asking a question:  
  5. I'm with Viactiv and they have been pretty rough when it comes to giving me advice in the past, giving me wrong information and telling me one thing while doing another.    10 days ago I wrote them to tell me how they calculate sick days that they have to pay for, how many I get, how many I have left, if they renew, when they renew. Etc. I asked them to contact me only by email or post (so I have everything in writing and it's less stressful for me to read than to try and keep up on the phone).    They hadn't got back to me after three business days so I contacted them again to find out if there was an issue, no reply after two more days, I wrote again last Friday to ask if they are dealing with my request and still nothing.    On Saturday my wife contacted them for a totally different matter concerning her account (moving the kids off hers and onto mine) and they got back to her by 10am Monday, by Monday evening I had a letter from them on my Viactiv App with all the forms I need to put the kids on my insurance, despite the fact I haven't actually asked for any of this.    I wrote to them again on Monday asking what was happening about all the emails I've been sending them and still nothing back.   Every time I send an email I get a message back saying "thank you for your email we'll get back to you ASAP", I've written to the main email and the woman who deals with my account and I'm getting nothing back at all.    The email account I'm contacting them from is the email registered on my account with them.    I'm totally at a loss, has anyone else ever had anything like this happen?   Does anyone know who I can contact if my insurance providers are stonewalling me?    I'm totally on my last nerve with this, between them and my neurologist (who I suspect is a mill) I'm totally exhausted dealing with this.    Thanks in advance.    D