First steps in Germany
There are only a few things that are absolutely indispensable when you‘re new in Germany. We will walk you through step by step and tell you where to get what you need.
Every country is unique, including Germany. For example, Germany has its own social security system. Health insurance, long-term care insurance, accident insurance, pension insurance and unemployment insurance are compulsory. On the other hand, as a patient, you can choose which doctor or therapist you want to be treated by.
Here's what you need for a perfect start:
The first thing you‘ll need is a place to live. Once you‘ve found somewhere, you have to register your new address with the Einwohnermeldeamt (residents’ registration office). You can normally do this at the Rathaus (town hall) or Bürgeramt (administrative office for citizens), where they will issue you an Anmeldebestätigung (confirmation of registration). In most areas, you can get in touch with your local office by dialling the General phone number 115. They‘ll be able to help you with any questions you may have regarding registration.
Once you‘ve received the Anmeldebestätigung, you‘ll be asked whether you have a tax identification number (Steuer ID-Nr.). Your tax ID is important when you start working. If you aren‘t asked about it when registering, please visit your Finanzamt (tax office) and apply for a tax ID there.
In Germany, you also need health insurance cover. BARMER is one of Germany‘s largest health insurance companies. Please get in touch with your BARMER representative for more information. He or she will be able to tell you the quickest and simplest way of joining. We‘ll then take care of informing your employer or university about your health insurance policy on your behalf.
In addition to this, you‘ll need a social security number so that your employer can pay you and we can book your insurance premiums correctly. Your BARMER representative can apply for this number on your behalf and you‘ll receive it within a few days. You then just need to let your employer know.
Working and studying in Germany
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