As soon as the baby is born, parents ask: Do we have to insure the little one? What is necessary and what you can do without – a guide through the insurance jungle
If there is a baby, couples should check their insurance
If one plus one soon turns into three, luck is perfect at first. But sometimes things turn out differently than planned. So that you are well protected in every situation, you should always adjust your insurance. That’s what matters:
Couples can convert many necessary insurance policies to an inexpensive family tariff. This applies, for example, to the indispensable liability insurance. Damage worth millions is covered for less than 100 euros per year. "Couples who live together can switch to a family tariff for the older contract and cancel the newer one without any notice", says Elke Weidenbach, insurance expert at the Consumer Advice Center North Rhine-Westphalia in Düsseldorf. Spouses and children are automatically insured with family tariffs, an unmarried partner must be registered by name.
If luck is in pieces, each partner needs their own contract as soon as possible. "In the case of unmarried people, the joint insurance cover ends when they move out of their shared apartment", explains Weidenbach. In theory, married couples are insured until they divorce. But if the person who has signed the contract enters his new love or does not pay the premium, the spouse is no longer protected – often without knowing it.
Other important insurance
If a couple lives together, a joint contract is also sufficient for home contents insurance. It is useful for expensive furniture or electronic devices. "Because the total value of the apartment inventory usually increases due to the contraction, the insurance sum should be checked", recommends Weidenbach. After a separation, protection only applies to the household of the person who signed the contract. The partner needs its own policy after a transition period of three months.
When founding a family, travel enthusiasts should also switch the international health insurance to the family tariff. For less than 20 euros a year, it protects parents and children from high costs if a family member falls ill abroad. In the event of a separation, each partner needs its own policy.
Secure parents first
Starting a family is a good reason to take out the essential occupational disability insurance now. It protects the most valuable asset: your own workforce. "Each partner needs their own policy, if possible also housewives", says Weidenbach. Depending on your profession and age, you should plan at least 600 euros per year for each BU. After a separation, they continue to run unchanged. If payment has been agreed in the event of death, you should remember to change the beneficiary, i.e. the person who will then receive the money. "Each partner should have their bonuses debited from their own account", advises the lawyer. If the ex stops the payment out of anger, the insurance coverage can be gone.
As soon as the next generation is announced, additional provision is important. "Risk life insurance is absolutely necessary and pays if something happens to the parents", says Elke Weidenbach. The costs start at around 200 euros / year. Depending on the individual’s life situation, Weidenbach recommends an insurance sum of at least 200,000 euros. After a separation, you should change the beneficiary immediately, otherwise the ex-partner will get the money in an emergency.
The child needs this insurance
But parents also want the best protection that they can get for their children. The insurance industry has adjusted to this. Cute dragons, colorful cartoon characters and bright children’s eyes advertise all-round carefree packages that are designed to protect the little one in every situation. "In such packages everything is a little insured, but nothing is right", explains Frank Golfels, President of the Federal Association of Insurance Consultants. On the one hand, parents pay for things that are not absolutely necessary and, on the other hand, they receive insufficient benefits in an emergency. Individual policies that offer the protection that a family really needs are better. Which insurance is necessary for children and which families can do without:
Statutory health and long-term care insurance
Pays medical treatment in accordance with legal regulations.
Need: Compulsory if the child is not privately insured.
Costs: no additional costs.
Good to know: Children of legally insured parents are also insured free of charge. If one parent is legally insured, the other privately, the child can only be insured under the statutory family insurance under certain conditions.
Private health and nursing care insurance
Takes care of medical treatments according to an individual contract.
Need: Obligatory if the child is not covered by family health insurance.
Costs: depending on the tariff, per child from around 100 euros / month.
Good to know: If both parents are privately insured, the child can be insured without a health check within two months of the birth, usually at the tariff conditions of the parents.
international health insurance
Assumes treatment costs abroad that are not reimbursed by normal health insurance, especially the often very expensive return transport.
Need: recommended for families traveling abroad. Exception: privately health insured, for whom the international protection is included in the tariff.
Costs: from around 30 euros / year.
Good to know: Pregnancy complications, miscarriages and premature births should be covered. It is useful to take over rooming-in costs as well as looking after and accompanying the children if their parents go home fall ill. When returning the patient to the patient, the wording in the contract is important: Make sure that the transport is already paid for if it is ‘medically reasonable and justifiable’, not just ‘medically necessary’.
Offers the insured person the scope of services of a private patient in a hospital. Pays for accommodation in a single or double room, rooming-in with parents, free choice of doctor (e.g. chief physician or specialist) depending on the tariff.
Costs: From around 5 euros / month.
Good to know: The tariff should also cover medical treatment that exceeds the maximum rate of the fee schedule (3.5 times). If children keep the insurance until old age, they benefit especially since they no longer have to do a health check.
Additional outpatient insurance
Assumes outpatient services that normal health insurance does not pay, for example naturopath or glasses.
Costs: From 10 to 15 euros / month.
Good to know: The benefits are usually capped at a certain amount per year. Insurance is too expensive, it is more worth saving and paying for treatments yourself if necessary. It is also worth comparing the benefits of the statutory health insurance companies. Many offer special extras in addition to the statutory standard benefits. If you find a health insurance fund that better suits the needs of the family, it might make sense to change your health insurance company.
Pays additional costs for dental treatments that go beyond the statutory benefits.
Costs: From 10 to 15 euros / month.
Good to know: Here too, benefits are usually limited to a certain amount per year. With orthodontics, you often pay in for years before the youngsters need the services. It makes more sense thatposts to save and pay if necessary.
Takes on damage the child inflicts on others.
Need: indispensable. Without protection, not only adults are liable, but under certain conditions children are also liable indefinitely and for a lifetime.
Costs: Family tariff from 50 to 80 euros a year
Good to know: The insurance should include damage to children under the age of seven who are incapable of torture, which saves many disputes in an emergency.
Pays a lifelong pension or a one-off lump-sum payment if the child is permanently disabled due to an illness or accident (usually from a degree of disability of 50 percent).
Need: Highly recommended.
Costs: From around 30 euros / month.
Good to know: A minimum pension of 1000 euros is recommended. Those who can afford it should choose a higher pension. Insurers require a health check. Tariffs and benefits vary widely, there are often exclusions and a contract is often not possible for previous illnesses. Important: neutral advice.
Applies if the child is permanently disabled after an accident.
Need: Limited recommendable.
Costs: From around 60 euros a year.
Good to know: Disability usually arises from illnesses, more rarely from accidents. If disability insurance rejects a contract for the child, accident insurance makes sense, possibly combined with a private long-term care insurance. Since the tariffs are very different, is a neutral one consultation important. Choose a contract without premium refund, as these are too expensive or the insurance sum is too low.
Benefits flow when the child is in need of care; the criteria of statutory long-term care insurance usually apply.
Need: Limited recommendable.
Costs: From around 5 euros a month.
Good to know: Not every handicapped person needs care. Babies and toddlers are naturally dependent, which is why long-term care insurance only pays from a certain level of development. Supplementary long-term care insurance is only worth considering if it complements accident insurance because it was not possible to take out disability insurance. The tariffs are very different. The same applies here: get neutral advice before closing.
This is a classic pension insurance with a very long term. The contract later passes from the parents to the child. The pension is paid when the child is at least 62 years old.
Costs: From around 25 euros / month.
Good to know: Very high costs, hardly any interest, high losses with early withdrawals (before the child’s 62nd year!). Due to the extremely long term, the pension benefits are practically unpredictable (stock exchange and interest rate developments, inflation, bankruptcy of the insurance company). Better: save a bank savings plan or a fund.
Classic pension insurance, which is payable when the child starts vocational training.
Costs: From around 25 euros / month.
Good to know: As a result, it is mostly a low-interest savings contract. The costs amount to up to 30 percent of the contributions paid. Better: save a bank savings plan or funds.
Pays when the child becomes disabled.
Need: Indispensable from the start of vocational training.
Costs: Independent policy for small children is not possible.
Good to know: Disability insurance sometimes includes an option to BU upon reaching a certain age. However, the benefits as sole protection are usually too low.
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