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Our situtation is different so hopefully someone with similar experience can guide a little. We are both US citizens. We are both retired. Everywhere I read it says that you must have health insurance. The problem is because of my age 64 it is very expensive. If I get residency can I eventually get national health insurance to bring the cost down a little. If I can, how long do I have to wait and, can you buy a month-to-month health insurance for a few months just to get residency. Also y secondary insurance in the US says that I am covered worldwide for hospitals and medical clinics for emergencies but have doubt whether this is going to be enough. have many more questions but let’s start here. (Hehehe) many thanks, vieken danke
 

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Have moved you into a thread of your own, given that you had posted in a thread on a very different issue.

While US citizens can simply move to Germany, register their residence and then apply for a long-stay visa, I think you'll probably find that you will be required to have your own private insurance for the first year in any event. And I'm not sure what the procedure is for enrolling in the national system in Germany as it is a bit different from the systems in other EU countries that I'm familiar with.

The other issue may be that there isn't an actual "retirement" visa for Germany.

In any event, let's try to flag someone down who has a better understanding of the German visa system and the German health care system.
Cheers,
Bev
 

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Our situtation is different so hopefully someone with similar experience can guide a little. We are both US citizens. We are both retired. Everywhere I read it says that you must have health insurance. The problem is because of my age 64 it is very expensive. If I get residency can I eventually get national health insurance to bring the cost down a little. If I can, how long do I have to wait and, can you buy a month-to-month health insurance for a few months just to get residency. Also y secondary insurance in the US says that I am covered worldwide for hospitals and medical clinics for emergencies but have doubt whether this is going to be enough. have many more questions but let’s start here. (Hehehe) many thanks, vieken danke
As a person who is neither employed nor studying in Germany, you can 'voluntarily' insure ('freiwillige Versicherung' but don't be fooled it's by no means voluntary) yourself in the statutory system. This tends to be expensive, depending on your income, about 160-700 Euro/month as far as I know.

You can't just buy insurance for a few months. By law, you need to get German health insurance when you move to Germany permanently (=register your residence) and the insurance provider will invoice you until you leave Germany permanently and provide them with your de-registration cerificate.

Statutory insurances don't have to take you if you have not been insured within the EU/a country with which Germany has an agreement regarding health care for the last 2 years prior to applying. I don't know whether that's the case for the USA.

Private insurances don't have to take you if they think you'll be too expensive for them. It's also expensive. Personally, I would not touch private insurance with a 3-foot pole.

Please note that any application for a residence permit as a retired person is outside the rules and at the discretion of the alien department caseworker. There have been US members of the forum who had bought an apartment in Germany for their retirement and were then told that they could not, in fact, move to Germany permanently, would not be granted a residence permit, but could only stay the usual 90 in every 180 days as visitors.

This might help:

https://www.tk.de/tk/social-security-in-germany/610322

https://www.tk.de/tk/versichert-als...raege/beitraege-freiwillig-versicherte/346564
 

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I think you will find this very difficult. My understanding is that if you aren't an EU citizen who's been part of an EU health insurance system in another country, you simply cannot get coverage from a public insurer after the age of 55, even if you were working in Germany. So an American wishing to retire in Germany has no choice but private insurance, which is not cheap. This in addition to the other problems you might have obtaining a residence permit. In other words, Germany is not a country where Americans can easily retire.

I'm not absolutely certain about the insurance. You need to talk to an independent insurance broker. There are a few who deal with expats who are prominent on another forum for expats in Germany, the name of which for silly reasons I am not allowed to mention here (hint: google "toy" and "town" and "germany").
 

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I think you will find this very difficult. My understanding is that if you aren't an EU citizen who's been part of an EU health insurance system in another country, you simply cannot get coverage from a public insurer after the age of 55, even if you were working in Germany. So an American wishing to retire in Germany has no choice but private insurance, which is not cheap. This in addition to the other problems you might have obtaining a residence permit. In other words, Germany is not a country where Americans can easily retire.

I'm not absolutely certain about the insurance. You need to talk to an independent insurance broker. There are a few who deal with expats who are prominent on another forum for expats in Germany, the name of which for silly reasons I am not allowed to mention here (hint: google "toy" and "town" and "germany").
I know somebody who got voluntary statutory insurance for his parents from Asia, both over the age of 65. After a lot of stress, searching insurance providers and downright begging.

I also know of some people who have not been successful.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
Interesting question. I actually used to live in Germany for a short time in 1980. Offered a job immediately , due to my age, but my partner was substantially older so I reluctantly tucked my tail and returned to the US. Love conquered all. Time forwarded...... have had great life. Lived in Argentina for a few years and currently own a ocean front house in Mexico. The problem..... bored bored bored. Life is more than a cerveza and a taco. Originally I was looking into Portugal, Spain, France and then Germany. At this point it really doesn’t matter where geographically we reside. Have had the pleasure of travelling to Europe 60+ times over the years so can adapt anywhere. The main problem...... at my age the insurance (private) is very expensive. I checked my secondary insurance (first is Medicare) and it says that I am covered worldwide for emergencies, hospitals and medical clinics. But..... does this mean anything to the immigration in the mentioned countries. I don’t plan to relocate just be be able to double dip with my insurance. My intentions are very honorable and I plan to keep my Medicare and secondary insurance in case I had to return to the US if an emergency arose. And have plenty of available credit in case something like appendicitis popped up and needed immediate medical attention. OK..... this is my story and I’m sticking with it. BTW Happily married for 26 years (married in Argentina) to a US citizen (originally from Philippines). We just want a change for our later years.... not to mooch off of a country.
 

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Interesting question. I actually used to live in Germany for a short time in 1980. Offered a job immediately , due to my age, but my partner was substantially older so I reluctantly tucked my tail and returned to the US. Love conquered all. Time forwarded...... have had great life. Lived in Argentina for a few years and currently own a ocean front house in Mexico. The problem..... bored bored bored. Life is more than a cerveza and a taco. Originally I was looking into Portugal, Spain, France and then Germany. At this point it really doesn’t matter where geographically we reside. Have had the pleasure of travelling to Europe 60+ times over the years so can adapt anywhere. The main problem...... at my age the insurance (private) is very expensive. I checked my secondary insurance (first is Medicare) and it says that I am covered worldwide for emergencies, hospitals and medical clinics. But..... does this mean anything to the immigration in the mentioned countries. I don’t plan to relocate just be be able to double dip with my insurance. My intentions are very honorable and I plan to keep my Medicare and secondary insurance in case I had to return to the US if an emergency arose. And have plenty of available credit in case something like appendicitis popped up and needed immediate medical attention. OK..... this is my story and I’m sticking with it. BTW Happily married for 26 years (married in Argentina) to a US citizen (originally from Philippines). We just want a change for our later years.... not to mooch off of a country.
I didn't think you were going to mooch off :) If you pay voluntary insurance you are in the system just like anybody else and appendicitis would not cost you extra.

I was just interested in your reasoning because a lot of Germans tend to try to retire to Spain (or recently Bulgaria, I hear) to get away from high cost of living and the weather that can be rather depressing.

I hope you'll try to secure a residence permit first and then have all your stuff shipped over?
 

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But..... does this mean anything to the immigration in the mentioned countries. I don’t plan to relocate just be be able to double dip with my insurance.
The Schengen 90 days in 180 days is your friend. You can come for three months twice a year as a tourist, which requires no residence permit or visa, and your travel insurance is sufficient. If you find a part of Germany you like, and you can afford to do so, buy or rent a modest apartment. Otherwise wander.
 

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But it was nice in the “old” days when you could just drive over to another country, get a stamp in your passport and return home by dinner time. Have always been a nomad in my heart but as my friends have always told me that I am a nester. I really need roots, but affordable roots.
 

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I was just interested in your reasoning because a lot of Germans tend to try to retire to Spain to get away from high cost of living and the weather that can be rather depressing.
I have spent a lot of time in Germany and am currently back here for a few months training. I was so pleased when I got the opportunity because I love the country and have always found the cost of living in line with the other European countries that I have lived in. It's a case of swings and roundabouts. If I was considering retiring I could write a list of ten places in Germany that would be high on my list of places to move to and the climate would be a strong attraction. The thought of spending more than a couple of weeks in Spain would fill me with dread. Each to his own.
 

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I have spent a lot of time in Germany and am currently back here for a few months training. I was so pleased when I got the opportunity because I love the country and have always found the cost of living in line with the other European countries that I have lived in. It's a case of swings and roundabouts. If I was considering retiring I could write a list of ten places in Germany that would be high on my list of places to move to and the climate would be a strong attraction. The thought of spending more than a couple of weeks in Spain would fill me with dread. Each to his own.
Oh definitely, I don't deal well with heat, either. Wouldn't have made it through my first year in Scotland, otherwise :)

I absolutely want to retire in Germany but then, that's home.
 

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We are both US citizens. We are both retired. Everywhere I read it says that you must have health insurance. The problem is because of my age 64 it is very expensive. If I get residency can I eventually get national health insurance to bring the cost down a little. If I can, how long do I have to wait and, can you buy a month-to-month health insurance for a few months just to get residency.
Public health insurance in Germany is based on a socialist concept where the premiums are based on income and not personal risk. This results in people generally paying more relative to their personal risk when they are younger and less when they are older.

Those never who've never been insured in the public system are not allowed to move here in their retirement to mooch off the rest of us. Germany already has more than enough problems dealing with elderly patients who need care and there is no reason to subsidise those who've never paid into the system.
 

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Cruel but fair. Which is why I'm telling my spouse that we have a rapidly closing window for me to move back to Germany and work for a few years.

Canada is really not different, it's all funded by taxes so contributions are proportional to income, and everyone's in the same risk pool regardless of age or medical history. Socialist in the best sense of the word. I expect that our rules for family reunification are a bit more forgiving, but you do hear of stories where individuals are denied permission to immigrate because of dependent's medical issues.
 

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Cruel but fair. Which is why I'm telling my spouse that we have a rapidly closing window for me to move back to Germany and work for a few years.

Canada is really not different, it's all funded by taxes so contributions are proportional to income, and everyone's in the same risk pool regardless of age or medical history. Socialist in the best sense of the word. I expect that our rules for family reunification are a bit more forgiving, but you do hear of stories where individuals are denied permission to immigrate because of dependent's medical issues.
Oh! You thinking of Berlin again?
 

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Hopefully yes. Lots of work in my field, no problem there, but quite a few other moving parts in the mix (spouse, child, cats).
Brilliant! We are just waiting for my older one to sit her GCSEs next June and then we are definitely going home. Housing market is atrocious, though. We are thinking about Potsdam, have even taken out membership in a Wohnungsbaugenossenschaft there (couldn't find any in Berlin that has flats in the right places and still takes new members).

Has your daughter graduated high school, yet?
 

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The daughter finishes school this year. Will doubtless spend time in Germany in years to come but most likely she'd start university here. At least one of two cats may not be long for this world, which is a consideration.

Berlin makes a lot of sense for us given friends and work situation for me, but we could also go elsewhere.
 

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As a person who is neither employed nor studying in Germany, you can 'voluntarily' insure ('freiwillige Versicherung' but don't be fooled it's by no means voluntary) yourself in the statutory system. This tends to be expensive, depending on your income, about 160-700 Euro/month as far as I know.

You can't just buy insurance for a few months. By law, you need to get German health insurance when you move to Germany permanently (=register your residence) and the insurance provider will invoice you until you leave Germany permanently and provide them with your de-registration cerificate.

Statutory insurances don't have to take you if you have not been insured within the EU/a country with which Germany has an agreement regarding health care for the last 2 years prior to applying. I don't know whether that's the case for the USA.

Private insurances don't have to take you if they think you'll be too expensive for them. It's also expensive. Personally, I would not touch private insurance with a 3-foot pole.

Please note that any application for a residence permit as a retired person is outside the rules and at the discretion of the alien department caseworker. There have been US members of the forum who had bought an apartment in Germany for their retirement and were then told that they could not, in fact, move to Germany permanently, would not be granted a residence permit, but could only stay the usual 90 in every 180 days as visitors.

This might help:

https://www.tk.de/tk/social-security-in-germany/610322

https://www.tk.de/tk/versichert-als...raege/beitraege-freiwillig-versicherte/346564
Perhaps this can shine a light to the TO..
yesterday in a newspaper about the topic : In Northern Germany 15.000 people are covered by public healthcare only for emergency cause they can 't pay insurance.
The problem: rates are not calculated from real salary, instead by a virtual amount of 4350 €/mon.
so they have to pay 700€/mon.
Earliest with the annual tax declaration a reduction of 2231€/mon can be achieved, new month. rate 393€. Many freelancer are unable to pay even this rate and get no insurance anymore but lots of dept. 12% late payment fine a year...

Private insurances for older people are very expensive. Only the health, the younger with good income can get reasonable rates..rising with the years. Usually they can 't change to public health service.
 
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