According to German law, everyone living in the country must have adequate health insurance. If you want to get or renew a visa for work or study, you will need to prove that you are covered by a suitable health insurance policy before you can be granted permission to stay in the country.
Before matriculating, every applicant must obtain a health insurance certificate from their health insurance scheme. The health insurance scheme will certify that the student:
- is insured or
- is exempt (versicherungsfrei) or has been exempted (von der Versicherungspflicht befreit) from health insurance or
- is not obliged to hold health insurance (nicht versicherungspflichtig)
The health insurance certificate must be provided along with the university matriculation documents. Students who are continuing studies at another university must provide a new health insurance certificate.
Private Health Insurance
Students who have a private health insurance can request to be exempted from insurance obligations. For this, a certificate from a health insurance scheme is required which has to be provided along with the university matriculation documents (a copy, the original belongs to the student). The exemption cannot be revoked and will be in force for the entire period of studies. For further information, please contact health insurance schemes.
Students who are registered at state or state-recognised universities in the Federal Republic of Germany are required to hold health insurance. They may enter into a student health insurance agreement with any of the statutory health insurance schemes.
European students may present evidence of health insurance coverage in their home country. Students from countries that have a social insurance agreement with Germany (EU and EWR) and are members of a statutory/state health insurance scheme there can have this confirmed by any of the statutory health insurance schemes here. They must present their European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) and the German statutory health insurance scheme will confirm their exemption from the statutory obligation to hold health insurance in Germany.
Students who already want to send their matriculation documents from their home countries have the possibility to request the certificate of exemption online. For instance, AOK Berlin Brandenburg offers this service. For this, students scan their insurance card (name and validity have to be legible) and the main page of their passport and mail them to the following address: email@example.com. AOK Berlin Brandenburg will send the certificate of exemption directly to Freie Universität Berlin. The matriculation at Freie Universität Berlin can then be completed.
Students who have private health insurance in their home countries may terminate this coverage and take out German student health insurance from a statutory health insurance scheme. You may also exempt yourself from the obligation to hold health insurance and remain privately insured.