Health insurance for the unemployed

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Hi, I have moved to Wiesbaden a few months ago and now I got a letter that I need to prove I have all the relevant papers to stay in Germany.

I am from Hungary, worked in the UK for the last 3 years where I have paid health insurance.

I was trying to find information about health insurance here in Germany, but it is all confusing. I know that I have to have one.

Wanted to find out if the Arbeitsamt should pay for it, even if I have not worked here before. I am looking for a job right now. Went to TK, but I was told they cant insure me till I have a job.

I just really dont know what my options are.

Any suggestions?

Thanks

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I can only wish you loads of luck mate :-)))

Anyway, getting a paper from the NHS stating that you were under their coverage would be a first good move...

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Are you receiving unemployment assistance? Otherwise, I don't think the Arbeitsamt will pay. An EHIC health card from the NHS might help to show you have some health cover, if the auslanderamt accepts it. They'll also ask you to prove you have sufficient funds to remain in Germany while you look for a job.

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An EHIC card from another country is not valid health insurance cover for someone resident here. It's meant as emergency insurance cover for a visitor.

If you are registered unemployed here then you get AOK public cover at no cost to you. Without an income, if you are not registered as unemployed and receiving benefits you won't qualify for any public insurance such as TK, but you can buy private insurance that you have to pay from your own funds. It won't be cheap. Your status as an Hungarian national (I presume) makes it all the more complicated as despite now being EU members you still don't share all the EU benefits that the rest of us do.

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George&Eva:

since Jan 1st you are obligated to have health insurance in Germany.

The NHS won't be covering you any more if you allready moved to Germany some month ago, just as YL6 explains above.

The information from the TKK may not always be correct, I fear, because I have seen to many cases recently where poeple have recevied false or misleading information both from public and private health insurances (and HRM department of really big and important companies as well). Probably the new laws are just to complicated for many who don't deal with EXpat issues on a daily base... its a mess of a law anyway. But thats beside the point.

If you declare yourself simply as "selfemployed" to a public health insurance and if you can show proof that you have been insured for at least 24 month out of the last 5 years in any EU memberstates public health insurance (like in your case the NHS) you are of course eligible for a voluntary membership in public health insurance. You'll have to give an estimate of income for the insurance to compute the premium, lowest estimate will be aorund 1200 EUR/month an change and cause an insurance premium of around 250.- EUr/month. If you guys are married, only one of you can apply for the insurance and get the spouse co-insured as dependent without own income (but only if there is really no income there). Only problem with public health insurnace in your case could be that they demand some back-pay for the last couple of month since you became resident in Germany because at least after 3 month initial period you should have applied for public health insurance if you wanted to go with it.

An alternative would be to go with a private health insurance instead. For this you should contact an independent broker in order to get a number of quotes and see, what would/could work better for you. CAution: once you you have opted for private health insurance as a selfemployed/freelancer there is no voluntary way back to public health insurance, only through getting a job/employment with compulsory public health insurance.

 

Cheerio

I am a professional independent insurance broker, financial adviser, and authorised advertiser. Contact me.
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Thanks everyone.

I had no luck in the first round. Asked for a quote from AOK, which is 136 Euros per month. I went to the Amt fur Soziales Arbeit to see what benefits I could get and if they pay for my health insurance. Basicly they sent me away, as my partner has a job and even though we are not married, we should still sort it out between us.

I have not registered as unemployed so far,as I was told I would not get any benefits if I do. But maybe this is the only option. I will go back to find out if I would really get an AOK public cover if I am registered as unemployed.

I can not afford private insurance.

Will see.

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One thing to be aware of, if you're planning to stay in Germany permanently, is that even if you aren't entitled to any unemployment payments (having previously been self-employed, for example) it is still worth signing on at the Arbeitsamt because the time will be added to your qualifying period for your state pension. This can result in a higher pension, or the possibility to take up your pension earlier. You'll need to re-sign on every three months.

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George&Eva: you will not like what I have to say, but if you can not get into public health insurance and can also not afford private health insurance, you have no right to stay here for long. Health insurance is compulsory now for everyone and not having one means on one hand that you free-ride on the German society/public in case anyting ever happens to you that will require intensive treatment (nobody is fully protected from getting involved in an accident, right, or to become suddenly severely ill?) If that should happen you will face sever financial penalties eventually...

I can understand your predicament, but under these circumstances you might be better of returning to Hungary or the UK.

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Presumably the most expedient /expedient solution in the situ described here is to: (1) try to get a job, any job, whatever, that either comes with healthcare provision options or gives you cash to pay for healthcare or (2) register with Arbeitsamt in order to access specialist local advice on finding work, what happens if unemployed etc. And (3) get the UK certificate that you were covered by the NHS there (and the relevant UK social security brochures about rights and who to contact are all on the web). You seem to know what things you have to do so my advice would be go on and do them.

 

At least in Frankfurt / Hessen Rhein Main you are better placed than most to find work - low unemployment and quite a lot of jobs knocking round (even part time supermarket stuff). I'm self-employed and so totally outside the state support net but that sort of stuff is my contingency. I know I can earn cash to pay for my living doing that.

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... try to get a job, any job ...

Mind you, Hungarians need a work permit in Germany ... despite being EU citizens

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Maybe that means that Arbeitsamt won't help then too? If OP has put themselves in a position of finding it hard to get a job, then presumably it's down to partner (who is working) to earn the dosh for his insurance. Or he gets an "unofficial" cash-paying job.

 

The job question and work permit (from the Frankfurt board). I know plenty of people working round here with work permits working for global firms. The key point, though, is that they people with work permits tend to be here as a result of applying for specific jobs that require specific skills. That's the way I think you have to do it. You have to target firms or contact that want your specific skills (and cant obtain them from those entitled to work here). The other I suppose is to tap into niche Hungarian markets / language. A few people I know have jobs as they offer specific language / country knowledge, but not many.

 

Are there other options? Contract work in England to pay for life here? That's another contingency I'd consider. Hungarian entites with a presence here?

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Thanks everyone.

I had no luck in the first round. Asked for a quote from AOK, which is 136 Euros per month. I went to the Amt fur Soziales Arbeit to see what benefits I could get and if they pay for my health insurance. Basicly they sent me away, as my partner has a job and even though we are not married, we should still sort it out between us.

I have not registered as unemployed so far,as I was told I would not get any benefits if I do. But maybe this is the only option. I will go back to find out if I would really get an AOK public cover if I am registered as unemployed.

I can not afford private insurance.

Will see.

You said "your partner" which leads me to believe you are not married. If you ARE married, your spouse will be covered by insurance, since she is employed, and it should be no problem to have you included on that plan. Call the insurance company and see what they say.

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hi jacking this thread a bit.

 

Do the arbeitsamt pay health insurance for people who are unemployed. If so what about during the 3 month period after a person (obviously my self) quit his job (after 3 years) and isnt entitled to unemployment benefit for 3 months. Must I get private insurance for these 3 months or do the arbeitsamt cover me?

 

any nod in the right direction would be appreciated - hoping to have another job before my notice is up so hopefully wont even need this but it would be nice to know

 

cheers

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The "Sperrfrist" of three month after you with your job yourself means you are not entitiled to get anything from the Bundesagentur. That means of course that you do not get (co-)payment for health insurance either. You have to pay for your existing public insurance yourself, but now of course the employee and the employer share both together. In order not to lose to much money there, do please inform your public health insurance of your major change in income/employment situation so that they can readjust/reduce your premiums accordingly. And do it fast, they often do not such things retroactively (at least not without a major fight).

Swithcing over to private insurance won't make any sense, no private insurance will accept you for only three month anyway and once you are on unemployment support, you would be forced back to public insurance (in your case) anyway.

 

Cheerio

I am a professional independent insurance broker, financial adviser, and authorised advertiser. Contact me.
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Sorry to hijack this thread but im utterly confused beyond belief with german health insurance. Im moving over to germany on monday to live with my girlfriend and I have a few job interviews lined up, im just wondering whats the deal with applying for health insurance. I know its mandatory for everyone, and I know you need health insurance for a residence permit if i want to stay for longer than 3 months. But how does one actually go about applying for it, does your employer handle this or do you do it yourself? What happens if your unemployed? Should getting health insurance be up there with residence registration as one of my main priorities when i land?

 

I searched for information about this on google, here and howtogermany.com but I either found no answers or heavily conflicting information. Im an Irish national EU citizen by the way.

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Hi Barry! I´m not surprised you´re confused! It´s a terribly confusing issue here! You say you have a few interviews lined up: are you applying as an employee or as a freelancer? If you become an employee, your employer will ( or should ) help you with names of a public insurer and the forms. Make sure you bring proof you´ve been in the Irish system until now and an EHIC card (European Health Insurance card).It makes life easier if you become a freelancer / self-employed to get into the public system as they want written proof of a smooth transition from being in another EU state to joining up here. As a freelancer/ self-employed, you will have the choice of going for a private health insurer, whatever your income, if you want. Which is the better choice for you depends on income, length of planned stay here, health status etc. Getting health insurance is a priority as it is mandatory if you no longer have purely visitor status and actually register. A problem is with registering while still on Irish insurance ( theoretically ok if not planning to stay more than a year or work ) but, in reality , for example, landing a job after several months, getting public or private insurance and then being forced to pay backpayments to the date you registered here. I wouldn´t bank on getting state help with it as a newcomer.

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as an EU citizen you have two options to play it safe: you can sign up directly for a private health insurance upon arrival in Germany. If and when you get a job (i.e. employment) with what is most likely in your case compulsory public health insurance, the private insurance stops immideately. and if you continue your time in Germany as a self-employed person, you'd be covered still...

The other idea would be to get yourself an EHIC card AND the E101 form thru the Irish national health system with which you are allowed to stay and work in Germany as a self-employed person for up to one year while still covered by your Irish public system. Make sure you really have both. Many people just get the EHIC card and this is, legally speaking, not enough.

 

What you need to avoid is to postpone taking care of this immideately because as an EU citizen you are obligated to show that you are fulfilling the legal obligations regarding health insurance and will be backcharged all the way to the point you register yourself here (which you have to do within 7 days upon taking up residence).

 

Cheerio

I am a professional independent insurance broker, financial adviser, and authorised advertiser. Contact me.
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First of all cheers for all the information. In the interview I had they said i would know in 2 weeks if i have the position or not. Il be looking to be an employee and not a freelancer. Il be staying here long term(hopefully anyway, if i get a job). Looking for the public health option as I wont be making any big bucks.

 

My main question here is, should I go about applying for public health insurance now while still unemployed or should I wait till I am employed? And if I should apply now, where can I apply and how?

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