We’ve already written about health insurance backpayments—and we know that paying for insurance you never used doesn’t seem very fair! Our new Q&A video explains backpayments in a little more detail:
Still need a little refresher?
1. What are backpayments?
Backpayments are retroactive payments for time spent uninsured in Germany. Everyone residing in Germany has to have health insurance—it is a legal requirement.
So let’s say you move to Germany and register your residency by getting an Anmeldung. Then you start looking into getting insured…but the system seems complicated and expensive, and you’re not sure you’ll even stay in Germany anyway. You end up living without insurance for six months before you get a full-time job and can enter the public system. (Hurray!)
But if your public insurer realizes that you have been residing in Germany without health insurance, you may be asked to pay for that time you were uninsured.
2. Can I avoid backpayments?
The best way to avoid backpayments is to get insurance as soon as you arrive in Germany. This may mean:
- Joining public insurance if you are eligible.
- Getting a comprehensive private insurance plan.
- If you are not eligible for one of those options, get expat health insurance for the duration of your stay.