The state disability pension. Most people associate it with sufficient performance that you get from the state when you can no longer work in your profession. Unfortunately, the reality actually looks very different. In this expert article you will find out everything you need to know about disability pension. We will explain to you how the disability pension works and who is entitled to it. We will also show you which benefits you can get from a disability pension and which private protection you should still have in addition.

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Overview of expert articles on disability pension

What does the disability pension do?

What types of disability pensions are there?

What requirements must be met for a claim?

Who is fundamentally entitled to a disability pension?

Who is not entitled to a disability pension?

How much is the disability pension?

Where and how to apply for a disability pension?

How long do you receive a disability pension?

Can you live on disability benefits?

Are you allowed to earn something extra?

Therefore, you should also protect your workforce privately

Frequently asked questions

All information also in the video (11 minutes)

What does the disability pension do?

If the benefit event occurs, you will receive a full or partial disability pension from the statutory pension insurance. Of course, this only applies if you meet all the necessary requirements. We’ll go into these requirements in more detail later.

This pension will then be paid to you monthly. You can find out the amount of your possible current disability pension from your annual pension information.

What types of disability pensions are there?

There is a subdivision into partial or full disability pension. In the following, we explain to you which requirements must be met to receive the partial or full disability pension.

Partial disability pension

A partial reduction in earning capacity exists if, for health reasons, you only have 3-6 hours a day can work. Your last job is irrelevant. As soon as you are in at least three and no more than six hours a day any profession can work, you are partially incapacitated.

Full disability pension

You will receive the full disability pension if you only pay a maximum of 0- 3 hours in any profession can work.

The barriers to performance are very high

The first major weak point is already visible here. How badly do you have to be ill to meet this requirement on your own? The profession that is used here as a benchmark has nothing to do with your current job. If there is any job in Germany that you could still do for longer than 6 hours, then you will not get anything. It doesn’t matter how much you feel like doing this job. Incidentally, it is also irrelevant whether a job is actually available or not.

If you meet these and all other requirements (listed below), you will receive a corresponding pension from the statutory pension insurance. Even if I am already anticipating this: Even the full disability pension is not particularly high. But more on that in a moment.

What requirements must be met for a claim?

In order to receive a disability pension you must meet the following requirements (in addition to the maximum possible working hours per day already mentioned):

Medical requirements

If you can no longer work at least six hours a day in any job because of illness or disability, you meet the medical requirements for a disability pension. Whether you are fully or partially incapacitated depends on the number of hours you could still work each day. You have to meet these requirements for at least 6 months.

Insurance law requirements

You have to meet the general qualifying period of 5 years in order to receive the disability pension. This means that you must have been insured for at least 5 years.

special insurance law requirement

The so-called “special insurance law requirement” must also be met. This means that you have paid compulsory contributions for at least three years (36 months) within the last five years before the reduced earning capacity occurred.

But there are others here too Eligible Times , respectively possibilities, the general To meet the waiting period early :

further creditable times

Contribution times (Compulsory contribution periods, under certain conditions, for example, periods of receipt of sickness benefit, unemployment benefit, unemployment benefit II – from January 1, 2005 to December 31, 2010 – or transitional allowance, periods of raising children, periods of non-commercial home care, voluntary contribution periods)

Replacement times (e.g. times of political persecution in the GDR)

as well as times off

Pension adjustment in the event of divorce

Surcharges for marginal employment (Before 2013, insurance-free 400 euro job, from 2013 450 euro job exempt from compulsory insurance)

Pension splitting

Early fulfillment of the general waiting period is possible

You may have completed the general waiting period early if one of the following points is met:

→ If the cause of your reduced earning capacity is an accident at work, an occupational disease, or damage to the military or community service, then this is the case. A single contribution is sufficient for this. In the case of an accident at work or an occupational disease as the cause, however, only if you were also subject to compulsory insurance when the disability occurred. If not, you must have paid compulsory contributions for at least one year in the past two years.

→ If you have become fully incapacitated before the end of six years after completing your training and have paid compulsory contributions for an insured employment or activity for at least one year in the previous two years, this is also the case. The period of two years before the reduced earning capacity occurs is extended by periods of school education after the age of 17, but no longer than seven years.

Receiving a disability pension is linked to many different requirements

If you look at all the requirements, you will see that it is not that easy to receive the disability pension. Not impossible, but by no means a given.

Who is entitled to a disability pension?

All those who meet the above requirements are eligible. You have to go to the Worked for the last five years subject to pension insurance have and at least Compulsory contributions to statutory pension insurance for three years to have. If you have otherwise met this general waiting period ahead of time, as just described, you are also entitled to a disability pension. All of this, of course, on the condition that your health, according to the definition, is also poorly employed. If you have worked for a company consistently without lengthy absenteeism, then you are entitled as an employee.

You have to be really bad to make a claim

In order for you to have reduced earning capacity from a health perspective, it really has to hit you really hard. Whether you are legally entitled to a disability pension is another completely different piece of paper.

Since we now know which requirements must be met in order for you to receive a disability pension from the state, one thing quickly becomes clear: For many, an application would probably be rejected even if the health requirements were met.

Who is not entitled to a disability pension?

If you can work more than six hours a day, regardless of your occupation, you are not entitled to a disability pension.

Self-employed not covered by disability pension

As you may remember, the carrier is the statutory pension insurance. This means that all self-employed people who do not pay into the statutory pension insurance are eliminated. As a self-employed person, your existence here would be extremely threatened.

Exceptions for schoolchildren, students and trainees

As a trainee, you have already met the general waiting period early under very specific conditions (see above). However, betting on this does not necessarily make sense, because the pension you will receive is anything but generous and sufficient.

Housewives usually also without entitlement

Even housewives often do not meet the conditions for the general waiting period without paying any mandatory contributions. They are therefore not entitled to the disability pension.

Be careful with longer breaks

If, as an employee, you take a total of more than two years of leave within the last five years, for whatever reason, and you are then disabled, then your entitlement will also lapse.

It happens quickly that one or more requirements are not met

Roughly broken down, you can say that you will only receive a disability pension if you have worked continuously for one (or more) company for several years. If this is not the case, the conditions mentioned may mean that you will be denied the benefit.

But even if everything goes well and you actually have a claim, the following question must be asked:

How much is the disability pension?

At a full disability are close 30-40% of your last gross . In the t temporary disability pension it’s exactly half, well approx. 15-20% of your last gross . As a small note here: Most of all disability pensions amount to the partial disability pension, i.e. if you can only work three to six hours in any occupation.

A calculation example makes the low height clear

If we think of gross earnings of 3000 € monthly and assuming the absolute optimal case, the following monthly pensions would result:

Full disability pension: 1200 €

Partial disability pension 600 €

How is the amount of the pension calculated?

In a very simplified way, it is pretended (as of 2020) to continue working until you are 65 years and 8 months old with exactly your current salary. The “assumed starting age” increases by a few months every year. This then results in an “old-age pension”, which is then multiplied by a special factor. That is then the resulting amount of the full or partial disability pension.

Simplified train of thought

You can imagine it like this: Tomorrow you will be 65 years and 8 months old and you will retire. You basically receive your statutory old-age pension. This has been shortened because you are over a year early. It should be well known that this statutory old-age pension is not really high.

The problem is, you’re actually not yet 65. In other words, you will not receive a pension from private pension contracts either. So overnight you only end up with something like a “reduced statutory old-age pension”. That doesn’t really sound like a lot.

Partial disability pension then means half of it. As a rule, this value is almost always below the basic income.

Nobody can really live in dignity from it

Whether you can make a living from it is of course your decision. But that has nothing to do with a dignified life. The term “To survive” it hits better here. And that is exactly what an existence security should actually achieve, that you still remain dignified Life can.

How and where to apply for a disability pension?

The carrier is the statutory pension insurance. You can find a PDF on the topic on the homepage of the German Pension Insurance Apply for a disability pension. In this, all further steps are explained in detail so that you can apply for the state disability pension. There you will find contacts and the necessary documents. If you want to apply for this, we will refer you to this page.

Simply copy this link into your browser: Meine-Rente_detailseite.html # docc3be6c9d-0aba-4c2e-a793-c6bead9543fabodyText3

How long do you receive a disability pension?

In principle, the German Pension Insurance has set itself the following motto:

Rehabilitation before retirement

German pension insurance

As you have already found out, the reduced earning capacity must last for at least 6 full months.

In the first step, it is always checked whether a rehabilitation measure could not be more useful. The state also wants to get you back in shape as quickly as possible so that it doesn’t have to pay for you.

If that is not the case and the rehab would not make sense, then you will receive the pension.

Temporary or permanent reduced earning capacity

If it is clear that you should only be temporarily disabled, you will only receive the pension retrospectively from the 7th month after joining. If it is clear that the damage is lasting, one speaks of an indefinite reduction in earning capacity. You will then receive the corresponding unlimited pension immediately from the onset of the reduced earning capacity.

Conversion into old-age pension

When the time comes, the disability pension will be converted into an old-age pension. There is no time gap here, just financially. Should you ever recover, i.e. be able to work six hours a day in any job, your entitlement will expire from this point in time. So if you are no longer disabled or retire, your entitlement to disability pension expires.

Can you live on disability benefits?

Just ask yourself the following question:

How much would I need at least monthly pension for myself (and my family) in order to be able to continue to lead a dignified life?

For example, think of the following points and add them up:

  • Pay off rent / house
  • Loans
  • Food / catering
  • automobile
  • household
  • Insurance / old-age provision
  • vacation
  • Children (hobbies, activities, school trips, etc.)
  • Costs in connection with the illness / injury that led to the reduced earning capacity
  • everything else you can think of

No real protection, but at most a very poor basic protection

Let’s stick with our example with a monthly living standard of € 3000 gross. In the best case scenario, you suddenly end up with € 1200 or € 600. Most of the time you get a little less. When you see these numbers it should be clear relatively quickly that it will probably be very tight at the end of the month.

Hopefully this train of thought could help you to answer the question of whether the disability pension would be sufficient for you personally in case of doubt.

Are you allowed to earn something extra?

If the worst comes to the worst, you can still earn income on the side. However, there are clearly defined maximum limits for this.

There are clear limits to additional earnings

If you are fully disabled, your additional income may not exceed € 6,300 per year (as of 2018). If your additional earnings exceed this € 6,300 annually, 40% of this will be deducted from your pension.

Regular recalculation of the additional income limit in the case of partial disability pension

In the case of partial disability, more is possible here, but this limit is regularly recalculated for each individual. You can find more information about this “limit value” in your pension notification. You should therefore regularly ask your pension insurance provider where this limit currently lies with you. Just to be on the safe side, you should be incapacitated and still earn income on the side.

Therefore, you should also protect your workforce privately

The state disability pension is crudely put “a joke”. It doesn’t have much to do with real livelihood security if you lose your workforce. The benefit that you would get is often below the basic security. So this pension is often superfluous and just gives the appearance of a livelihood security.

State disability insurance for those born before 1961

For all those who were born before January 2nd, 1961, there is still a state disability insurance. So that means that many years ago you received a pension from the state if you were no longer able to practice your personal profession properly. The state has determined that it is not collecting enough contributions to finance all of the pension payments. That is why he decided to hand over the issue of occupational disability insurance to private insurance companies. The cause is very simple.

Every fourth person in Germany is unable to work

Statistics from the German Pension Insurance Association regularly show that almost one in four will be unable to work in their life. This means that more than 50% of the last job he was exercising can no longer be practiced for at least six months. The state could simply no longer bear that financially without allowing the contributions to explode. Privatization was inevitable.

Advantages for you through private protection of your workforce

On the one hand, it would of course be easier for the individual if the state took care of everything. On the other hand, there are also some advantages for you.

Here you have the opportunity to choose the insurer that is best tailored to you. This way you can have one for yourself adequate pension secure so that your existence and that of your family are not endangered in an emergency. Here you can freely choose how high your disability pension would be and how long this should be paid out. There are also some special clauses, that you can include according to your profession.

Consumer protection advocates taking out additional disability insurance

Consumer advocates also regularly emphasize the need to take out private disability insurance to protect your expenses (or income). And we at insurance with a head also recommend you to have one real protection to think about your labor.

Correct protection of one’s own workforce is a highly complex topic

Since this is a very individual and complex topic, you have the opportunity with us for one free online advice from one of our VMK experts on the subject Occupational disability insurance to be entered (or to be requested if there are no more dates available). They can show you exactly what is important in this really important topic and answer all of your questions that you have ever asked yourself about this topic. You are also welcome to check out our complete Disability insurance playlist look at. Always strictly according to our motto:

Understand first, then insure!

Bastian Kunkel, founder of insurance companies with a head

Frequently asked questions