International Group Insurance Products with Full Description:

Who helps you today to navigate international risk management and global benefits for expatriates, TCNs, foreign nationals and global travelers?

The 3 most important reasons to team with us for international group insurance needs are outlined below:

There is no cost to have McKinley International on "retainer" and we share advice with clients every day with no consulting fees.

If you employ expatriates and other international assignees, you never know what may cross your desk and you need a partner that can navigate ANY issue that may come your way.

Your current broker or consultant may lack international experience (99% do), and there is no conflict because we do NO U.S. domestic benefits.

If heading to Germany as an Expatriate, it's extremely important to have the right international insurance package that not only works in Germany, but equally well throughout the European Union. Other programs will be necessary depending on how long the person will be residing in Germany. (for example, international life insurance and expatriate disability insurance)

If you have expatriates in Germany or anywhere in the EU, or are an individual expatriate living in Germany please call us for a free insurance review.

Expatriate Insurance Germany

McKinley International Risk Management works with individuals and organizations that need to provide medical insurance in Germany for expatriate employees, travelers to Munich and other German cities, and local nationals of Germany. Please contact us for a free insurance and general international risk management consultation that will design a strategy based on your exact international exposures throughout Germany and the EU (where people are traveling and for how long.) Did we mention this is a free service, something the international consultants will charge you over $5,000 to do.

Whether you are working full time in Germany and need global health insurance, or just traveling for two weeks to Munich for Oktoberfest, anyone traveling or working abroad needs the right international medical insurance scheme. In addition to the proper expatriate health insurance for those living full time in Germany, here is a list of useful information for anyone working or traveling to Germany.

  1. An international medical insurance plan is very important for foreign nationals in Germany. You need a program that works in the host country, regionally throughout the EU, and in the home country for return visits.
  2. You may be required to use an admited health insurance plan in order to stay in your country and keep your work visa. This may mean using a local German insurance company like Alianz or using a foreign expatriate medical insurance plan that is also licensed to do business in Germany, either directly or though a partnership arrangement (fronting).

Local National Insurance in Germany

Germany is actually credited with establishing the first national social security system / public health and welfare system dating back to 1880. Today, like the rest of the EU, the system provides earnings related benefits for old age, disability, death, sickness, maternity, work injury, and unemployment. Benefits are financed by both employer and employee contributions with both contributing roughly 20% each to pay for pension, health care, and unemployment benefits..

Medical benefits include both a social system and a growing private system for those that earn over a certain amount in EU. Those that earn under a certain amount are required to join the State Insurance Plan. Work injury compensation is provided through government supervised industry wide funds. The work injury program covers partial and total permanent disability, constant attendance, and health costs.

Compulsory unemployment insurance is administered by the Federal Office of Labor through regional and local offices. The German State Insurance System is generally supervised by the Federal Ministry of Health, with the Federal Insurance Institute responsible for federal health insurance.

Health insurance is obligatory for everyone residing in Germany who is employed full-time by a company. The company pays half of the insurance contributions, the other half comes out of the employee's salary. The employee's half usually totals around 10% of their gross salary. When starting work with a company usually the employee won't have to worry too much about how the system works. The company will automatically sign them up with an insurance company and the contributions automatically deducted from the salary. Sometimes the employee may be asked if they have a preferred insurance company. It is recommended to simply go with one of the big names, like "AOK" or "TKK". They are all pretty similar.

Health insurance has been obligatory for everybody in Germany, including the self-employed, since 2007. Medical treatment can be hugely expensive.

There are two types of health insurance in Germany. These are the "public" and "private" systems. This system often causes considerable confusion. Full details are given below.


Update: In 2012, those earning under 50,850 Euros are required to enroll and participate in the Government required German Health Fund. Above this amount with other requirements, German local nationals can opt out.

If you are employed in Germany and you are earning less than the threshold ( Versicherungspflichtgrenze) of EUR 48,600.- gross per year (EUR 4,050 gross per month), you are automatically and compulsorily insured in a public health insurance scheme. (THESE NUMBERS ARE SUBJECT TO CHANGE). This is also true for students at a state or state-approved university in Germany and certainly for interns too. This also means that your employer does not have the option of accepting an expat insurance scheme (see below). You are only exempt from mandatory public health insurance as an employee working in Germany if you are seconded ( German: "entsendet") by a company which has its HQ in a member state of the EEA (= European Economic Area; including all of the EU plus Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway) or in certain contracting states (among them being Canada and Quebec, PR China, Israel, Japan and the USA; for the complete list please check with "Secondment" exists if the employee goes abroad for work purposes on instructions from his/her employer and the work is time-limited in advance, inter alia because of the particularity of employment or by contract. Unfortunately I found no definition of the maximum acceptable "time-limit". The compulsory membership in German public health insurance while working here is protected by European Regulation No. EEC 1408/71, among others. It is furthermore laid out in the German SGB (=Sozialgesetzbuch), 5th book, § 257

All in all, what this means is: if you are employed by a German company or any other foreign company in Germany and you earn less than EUR 4,050 gross salary per month, you are a mandatory member of the public German health insurance system. You pay half plus 0.9% and your employer pays roughly half of the insurance premium too. As of 2009, the premium has been standardised for all public health insurance companies at 15.5% of gross salary up to the threshold (Beitragsbemessungsgrenze) of EUR 44,100. This will drop to 14.9% from July 2009. Although they more or less offer the same services, it's still worth comparing.

Public health insurance is great, however, if you earn only a small amount (because you get a lot of insurance for a low sum of money) or if you are married and have a spouse and children with you - because they are covered by the public health insurance too (this may change in the near future, though, according to the latest political plans). But beware: since a lot of services from the public health insurance system have been downgraded or cancelled in recent years, you might want to consider getting additional private insurance to cover some services like 1- or 2-bed rooms in hospital, Chefarzt-Betreuung (operation and treatment by the head doctor of the hospital) or full dental services/replacement etc. Even then you might still have to pay some extra if you have a very complicated illness and you try to get the most-respected expert in Germany to treat you, because in these cases treatment is only covered up to a certain limit. If you want to be sure about having enough funds in the event of severe illness to get the best possible treatment, other insurance types (Dread Disease offered by Canada Life or Scandia for instance) are a possibility.


If you are earning more than the threshold of EUR 4,050 Euro per month (2010), you can leave the public health insurance and get a private health insurance while employed in Germany. Here the comparison between different offers is a bit more complicated and you may want to get the advice of a professional advisor or broker. I have seen some attempts to compare different quotations from different private health insurances, but you cannot just take one quote with the price XYZ and another one with ABC to be paid per month and say that the cheaper one is the better choice - it may vary strongly regarding the insured coverage. The best way to start a comparison is to ask private insurers to send you a quotation "Analog GKV", meaning with the same coverage as the public health insurance. Then you can compare the insurance quotations on an even footing. You can also lower your premium by using "excess options (Selbstbeteiligung)". This means that you are willing to pay for instance the first 300.- EUR every year out of your own pocket and you will receive reimbursement only for the costs in excess of that 300.- EUR. Since most of the private insurances offer to repay you 1 or 2 monthly premiums after one year of not having using the insurance at all, you should add this repayment amount to the excess-option-amount agreed in your contract and then you know at what medical cost per year it makes economical sense to hand in all invoices to the insurer during any given year. The highest excess option is 2.400.- EUR per year; standard is between 300 and 750 EUR per year. If you take a very high excess option, you will achieve a similar coverage like with most expat health insurances: you are covered for all serious medical problems, but you will pay for all prescriptions and ordinary consultations of a doctor out of pocket. So, a Private Health insurance can be much lower in monthly premium than a Public health insurance while providing you with more and better coverage. Still: if you are married with children and your spouse does not earn any income here in Germany, public insurance covering all family members with your own premium can be the better deal. And if you want to have a better coverage than Public Insurance offers, you can always get an add-on insurance from private insurance companies, where you cover certain medical issues that you deem to be important for you.

Expatriate Insurance Germany Needs Chart (1 to 10 with 10 being a critical need) Looks at the need for expatriate insurance vs. what can be obtained in the local market or what many not even be needed for an expatriate assignment in Germany.

Expatriate Medical Insurance in Germany a necessity? 9
International Medical Evacuation in Germany (with assistance) 2
Expatriate Life Insurance in Germany 8
Expatriate Disability Insurance in Germany 8
Cross Cultural Training in Germany for U.S. expats 7
International EAP in Germany for U.S. expats in Germany 6
International Workers Compensation Insurance Germany 9
Expatriate Property Insurance in Germany 9
Expatriate Liability Insurance in Germany 9
Kidnap and Ransom Insurance Germany 3
Emergency Security Planning / Evacuation Plan 2
Local Admitted Coverage Needed for Expatriates residing in Germany YES
Place Germany Nationals under an offshore or U.S. expat plan No
Germany health insurance works for local nationals of Germany in the United States No
Repatriation of Remains Germany for Expatriates (insurance to return remains) 7

Insurance Notes on Local National Insurance in Germany.

In 2012 , the German Bundestag (governing body in this area) presented a change to the existing Insurance Law (called Versicherungsaufsichtsrecht), It would require unisex premiums in private, life, health, car, and other types of insurance. There can be no gender discrimination between men and women in the setting of premiums