Just like the tax number, the social security number is another important document that is generally required by employers in Germany. Hence, if you are planning to work part-time during your studies, you should get hold of this document. As a working student paying the statutory social security payments, you are entitled to being protected against the biggest risks, including illness, workplace accidents, unemployment, or retirement.
For this purpose, a fixed percentage of your income goes to pay your membership of the social security funds. Additionally, your employer is also entitled to pay a fixed proportion. For instance, the membership of the statutory health insurance fund currently amounts to 15.5% of your income, out of which you pay 8.2% and your employer pays 7.3%. Finally, it is imperative that you know that it is your employer’s duty to pay the contributions for the social security directly to the insurance funds.
The social security number (Sozialversicherungsnummer) can be obtained from the State Pension Fund office (Deutsche Rentensversicherung). In order to receive your social security number, you need to present the following documents to the officer at the Deutsche Rentensversicherung:
- A valid passport or residence permit (Aufenthaltstitel)
- Residency Registration Certificate (Anmeldebestätigung) from the Town Hall
Social Security Refund
If you worked in Germany during your studies and intend on returning to your home country after the completion of your studies, then you should familiar yourself with social security refund.
The social security refund basically allows you to take your pension entitlements back from the state. In order to get a refund of your social security entitlements, you are expected to submit to the German State Pension Fund an application to have your contributions refunded to you. However, bear in mind that at least a period of 24 months must have elapsed since you have left your employment with your employer in Germany and returned to your home country in order for your application for refund to be considered. Also, the German Pension Fund is liable to only reimburse half of the contributions paid for by you during your employment history in Germany. The employer’s part of the contribution of the social security is not refunded.
Once the social security has been refunded to you, the insurance relationship formally comes to an end. Further details pertaining to social security in Germany can be accessed at the German State Pension Fund website.