Step 7 - Take out health insurance
It is compulsory for all students in Germany to have health insurance. It is not possible to enrol as a student without proof of valid health insurance. Germany has both statutory and private health insurance schemes.
Statutory health insurance
Most students are members of a statutory health insurance scheme. The contributions are set by law and therefore the same for all German health insurance providers. Students are issued a chip card from the health insurance and are not charged for medical, dental or hospital treatment.
Private health insurance
The price-performance ratio offered by the different private health insurers may vary. Members of a private health insurance scheme initially pay for all their medical treatment themselves. They are then reimbursed later by the health insurance when they submit the invoices.
- Students may choose between private and statutory health insurance up to the age of 30 and up to the end of the 14th semester of their degree programme. If students choose to take out private insurance they need a certificate indicating that they are exempted from compulsory health insurance for enrolment. This certificate is available from your health insurer’s branch offices. It is valid for the entire length of study and is irreversible. This means that students cannot switch to statutory health insurance for the full duration of their studies.
- Students taking a German course are not subject to the compulsory health insurance requirement under the German Social Code (SGB) and must therefore take out private health insurance.
- If students are over the age of 30 when they start studying or are past the 14th semester of their full degree programme, they must insure themselves privately.