German social security

Germany's social security network is one of the best performing social systems in the world. German social security guarantees social security in society. The system offers comprehensive protection, especially for workers and their families.

Social security is based on the principles of communal solidarity. The insured persons' entitlement to benefit is based on their need, not on their individual risks. This means that every insured person contributes to the financing of the social security system according to his (financial) means. In principle, the benefits are the same for all insured parties.

The social security system consists of five pillars:

  • Health insurance (KV)
  • Nursing care insurance (PV)
  • Pension insurance (RV)
  • Unemployment insurance (AV)
  • Accident insurance (UV)
five pillars of social security

The five pillars of social security and their functions

Health insurance

Statutory health insurance

Institution: Statutory health insurance funds

Benefits: Payment of the costs for visits to the doctor and hospital treatment, as well as for many medicines and therapies. Health care, ensuring and restoring health through necessary medical assistance, alleviating the consequences of illness, sickness benefit.

Contribution: Employers and employees each contribute equally (a percentage of gross salary) plus an additional contribution from the employee alone.

Nursing care insurance

Statutory nursing care insurance

Institution: Nursing care funds of the statutory health insurance funds

Benefits: Permanent protection and financial Support for people in need of nursing care. Nursing allowance, services in kind, general care and domestic help.

Contribution: Employers and employees each contribute equally (a percentage of gross salary) plus a surcharge for childless employees aged 23 and over.
Statutory pension insurance

Statutory pension insurance

Institution: German pension insurance

Benefits: Rehabilitation, pension payment for security in old age and in cases of occupational disability or invalidity. Continued pension payment to surviving dependents in the event of death.

Contribution: Employers and employees each contribute equally (a percentage of gross salary).
Statutory unemployment insurance

Statutory unemployment insurance

Institution: German Federal Employment Agency

Benefits: Support for integration into the labour market, ensuring financial security in the event of unemployment, unemployment benefit.

Contribution: Employers and employees each contribute equally (a percentage of gross salary).
Statutory accident insurance

Statutory accident insurance

Institution: Employer‘s liability insurance associations, accident insurance funds.

Benefits: Prevention of accidents at work, Rehabilitation in the event of an accident at work, compensation for accidents at work or occupational illnesses.

Contribution: Paid solely by the employer

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