Personal insurance


What does statutory health insurance cover and where is private insurance coverage recommended? ➢ Private health insurance

How does health insurance coverage work in the EU? ➢ Health insurance in the EU

How does health insurance coverage work in countries outside of the EU? ➢ Foreign travel health insurance for persons who are health insured in Austria

What do I need to observe when staying in Austria? ➢ Health insurance in Austria for artists from third countries

Which insurance is required to obtain a visa? ➢ Visa insurance

What does statutory accident insurance cover and what other options are there? ➢ Private accident insurance

What can be insured? ➢ Occupational disability and invalidity

Private health insurance

What does statutory health insurance cover and when is private insurance coverage recommended? 

Statutory health insurance (mandatory insurance) covers almost all employed persons in Austria (with the exception of those who are marginally employed), a majority of all self-employed persons, recipients of unemployment benefits, pensioners and family members of these groups (co-insured persons) if they fall ill in Austria.    

Anybody may take out voluntary insurance in the statutory health insurance scheme.

LINK Social Insurance – Health Insurance

If statutory health insurance does not provide coverage for private or professional stays abroad, you might consider taking out individual health insurance. Health insurance coverage abroad is one of the key issues you should deal with before taking up activities abroad.

On the following pages you will find an overview of health insurance coverage in the EU and in countries outside of Europe, health insurance for artists from third countries in Austria and visa insurance.

Health insurance in the EU

How does health insurance coverage work in the EU? 

The social insurance systems of the EU member states are coordinated.

Accordingly, everybody who is health-insured in Austria is health-insured also in the EU and in the EEA states.

In addition, social insurance agreements have been concluded with some countries, which include also health insurance (e.g. Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Tunisia, Turkey, Israel …..).

LINK Social Insurance

Please note

In those countries with which social insurance agreements have been concluded, only such treatments are paid which would also be paid by the local health insurance. Repatriation, if necessary, is therefore not covered. When travelling to those countries, you might consider consulting your health insurer before starting your trip abroad about which services are covered and, as the case may be, take out additional foreign travel health insurance.

If you fall ill in the EU, the EEA area, or in a number of other countries, it is sufficient to present the e-card which serves as European Health Insurance Card. Some countries, however, require an entitlement document.

For a detailed list of countries, see: http://www.chipkarte.at/portal27/ecardportal/content?contentid=10007.678582&viewmode=content

Foreign travel health insurance for persons who are health-insured in Austria

If you are planning to travel to a country outside of Europe, it is strongly recommended that you take out foreign travel health insurance. It may be worthwhile to consult with your health insurer whether a social insurance agreement has been concluded with the particular country you are travelling to.

Most policies cover emergency out-patient treatment, hospital stays and repatriation. Depending on the price and scope of the insurance, the treatment of chronic diseases may for instance also be included. Most foreign travel health insurances also cover professional hazards.

Sometimes, insurance companies will settle the cost of hospitalisation directly with the hospital operator. Often you will have to pay for treatment upfront on site; an application for reimbursement can then be made to the Austrian health insurer which will refund a part. The remaining costs are assumed by the private foreign travel health insurance.

Please note

Most foreign travel health insurance policies cover a continuous period of six to eight weeks at most. However, you may travel several times a year for that period and claim insurance coverage.

For longer trips, you need to take out individual insurance which is costlier. Most insurers then offer daily or monthly insurance coverage. The longest possible duration of any such insurance is five years. After that, you need to take out insurance in the host country.

Non-binding examples of insurance tariffs

(health insurance only)

Foreign travel health insurance

For individuals, depending on the company, from EUR 30 per year

(for a period of max. 42 or 62 days for each trip)

Long-term foreign travel health insurance

- stays up to 365 days: approx. EUR 1-2 per day / approx. EUR 2-3 per day from 60 years of age

(depending on the country and the included benefits)

- stays between 365 days and 5 years: higher tariffs

Hint

Credit cards are frequently offered in combination with travel and travel health insurance. Before taking out travel insurance, it may make sense to check which benefits they include. Credit card insurances generally cover a period of 6-8 weeks and/or 3 months for each trip.

Note for ensembles and bands

For ensembles and bands with employed artists it is advisable to take out a flat-rate foreign travel health insurance. Health insurance coverage should also be ensured for self-employed artists who travel on behalf of the ensemble/band abroad – even if there is no obligation on the part of the principal.

The ensemble/band can take out insurance for self-employed persons who are domiciled in Austria (generally the main residence, at any rate the place where income is taxed and social charges are paid). Self-employed persons who are domiciled outside of Austria are responsible themselves for taking out insurance. Ensembles/bands should make the conclusion of foreign travel health insurance a precondition for their contract or have a provision included in the production agreements that the artists themselves are responsible for taking out insurance of any kind.

Especially with ensembles/bands consisting of self-employed artists who are domiciled in different countries, you should inform yourself in due course what is necessary and which documentary evidence is required by the organiser from each individual artist.

Please note

In many countries, taking out foreign travel health insurance is a pre-condition for obtaining a visa.  This holds also for non-EU citizens in Austria and/or in the Schengen area.

Visa Insurance

Health insurance in Austria for artists from third countries

What do I need to observe when staying in Austria? 

Artists from abroad are strongly advised to take out health insurance for the duration of their stay in Austria.

Artists from abroad (specifically from non-EU countries) who stay in Austria on a temporary basis, can also take out travel health insurance with Austrian insurance companies. These insurances are valid up to 365 days/12 months and available for any number of days. With some insurance companies, the contract may be concluded up to 31 days after having entered the EU.

Please note

This applies if there is no visa requirement for the person entering the country. If there is a visa requirement, insurance must be taken out for the full duration of the visa.  

Visa Insurance

Hint

You might want to consider taking out visa insurance or travel health insurance in Austria (with the help of the organiser or colleagues). If an insured event occurs in Austria, the settlement of the claim may prove highly complex if travel insurance was taken out in the country of origin.

Travel health insurance is frequently offered in combination with accident or third-party liability insurance.

Non-binding examples of insurance tariffs

(health insurance only)

Long-term foreign travel health insurance

- stays up to 365 days: approx. EUR 1-2 per day / approx. EUR 2-3 per day from 60 years of age

(depending on the country and the included benefits)

- stays between 365 days and 5 years: higher tariffs

 

- Health insurance for non-Austrians in Austria for a maximum of 12 months: from EUR 60 / month

(similar benefits as provided by the statutory health insurance to Austrians)

Some insurers offer special forms of insurance for scholarship holders.

Ask the insurer about the specific benefits included.

Hint

Credit cards are frequently offered in combination with travel and travel health insurance. Before taking out travel insurance, it may make sense to check which benefits it includes. Credit card insurances generally only cover a period of 6-8 weeks and/or 3 months for each trip.

Note for ensembles and bands

Self-employed artists are responsible for taking out their own health insurance. Ensembles and bands who contract self-employed artists should inform these of the health insurance requirement. It would be even more advisable to make the contract conditional upon the conclusion of health insurance and/or to require artists from EU member states to submit the A1 Certificate (see Social Legislation) which is what organisers often ask for. Insurance is an issue that should be clearly regulated in the production agreement; as the case may be, the contract will contain a clause stating that the artist himself or herself is responsible for all insurances.

Visa insurance

Which insurance is required to obtain a visa?

Applicants must provide evidence of having taken out health insurance for the duration of their stay in Austria when applying for a visa for Austria or the Schengen area. This insurance may be taken out in the country of origin or in Austria or any other EU country.

LINK Health insurance in Austria for artists from third countries

As a minimum, the insurance must have a defined indemnity limit and be valid in the Schengen area.

It is advisable to take out this so-called visa insurance in Austria, since the settlement of claims with insurance companies in the country of origin may prove highly complex should an insured event occur. This insurance may be combined with a travel accident or travel third-party liability insurance.

Austrian citizens who apply for a visa for a stay outside the Schengen area may also have to prove that they are insured. In some countries, the embassy often recommends insurance companies in that particular country, some countries even require that insurance is taken out with a specific insurer.

Some countries, on the other hand, have concluded insurance agreements with Austria. In that case, the Austrian statutory health insurance will provide all benefits.

Health insurance in the EU

Hint

You should inform yourself about visa requirements well in advance on the official website on the country you are planning to enter.

Non-binding examples of insurance tariffs

(health insurance only)

 

Austrian insurance companies offer insurance for Austrians travelling to third countries, as well as for non-Austrians in Austria.

Long-term foreign travel health insurance

- stays up to 365 days: approx. EUR 1-2 per day / approx. EUR 2-3 per day from 60 years of age

(depending on the country and the included benefits)

- stays between 365 days and 5 years: higher tariffs

 

- Health insurance for non-Austrians in Austria for a maximum of 12 months (suitable for visa): from EUR 60 /month

(similar benefits as provided by the statutory health insurance to Austrians)

Some insurers offer special forms of insurance for scholarship holders.

Ask the insurer about the specific benefits included.

Private accident insurance

What does statutory accident insurance cover and which other options are there? 

Accident insurance provides financial security if a person’s physical and mental performance is permanently impaired in the aftermath of an accident.

In insurance law, an accident has been defined as a health impairment which the person insured suffers abruptly (unforeseen and unavoidable), by external intervention (no event inside the person, e.g. bleedings of inner organs), impacting his or her body involuntarily (not caused wilfully). Examples include: car accidents, slipping on a stage, suffering injury when transporting instruments/ equipment, falling down a staircase. The different sequelae such as death, invalidity, occupational disability or hospitalisation may trigger the payment of the agreed sum insured if appropriate insurance has been taken out and the insured event has occurred.

Please note

Statutory health insurance covers ONLY work-related accidents (with both employed and self-employed persons). In the event of an occupational accident or illness, the statutory accident insurance will cover the cost of first-aid, medical treatment, rehabilitation and compensation after occupational accidents and illnesses. In addition, it is responsible for preventing occupational accidents and illnesses and for occupational health care.

Social Insurance – AUVA: http://www.auva.at

This insurance does not cover accidents in the private sphere!

Private accident insurance may therefore be sometimes useful for private purposes or for specific occupational groups.

When taking out private accident insurance, make sure that the insurance selected offers adequate and worldwide coverage.

Some insurers have specialised in the specific needs of artistic professions and offer customised insurance plans for this group.

Example

A pianist hurts his finger in his free time.

In this case, only private accident insurance would provide benefits. Customised insurance with a so-called dismemberment schedule would guarantee full disbursement for the event insured in the case of the loss of a finger, while otherwise only a small fraction of the sum insured is paid out. The dismemberment schedule defines the amount of benefit in line with the severity of the impairment. A general dismemberment schedule will often fail to meet the needs of people working in the field of arts, which makes it necessary to resort to customised schedules.

Occupational disability and invalidity

What can be insured? 

Occupational disability or invalidity insurance is risk insurance. In the event of permanent inability to work and full loss of earnings, the person insured receives a contractually agreed annuity which is paid out up to a fixed age limit.

Please note

Both the amount of the annuity and the age limit are determined on conclusion of the contract.

In most cases, insurance coverage through private accident insurance is insufficient, since, according to statistics, only 10% of all occupational disabilities are due to accidents. Accident insurance would be useless in all other cases, if occupational disability is caused by e.g. mental illnesses, musculo-skeletal diseases, heart diseases, or cancer.

In statutory pension insurance, persons insured are, under some conditions, entitled to an invalidity pension (blue-collar workers) or occupational disability pension (white-collar workers). Self-employed persons falling under the GSVG (Commercial Social Insurance Act) regime may, in some circumstances, be entitled to a pension if they become unfit for work.

Social Insurance

It is possible to insure one’s own capacity to work by individual insurance. In this case, the insurance applies to the exercise of the specific occupation or profession. Anyone who is unable to exercise the occupation or profession last exercised for more than 6 months at less than 50% is considered unable to work in a given occupation/profession.

However, self-employed artists may sometimes find it difficult to take out insurance against inability to work, especially in the performing arts. With most insurers, performing artists fall in the category of non-insurable professions, as the insurer’s risk is incalculable. The products available are very limited and expensive. The premium will depend on factors such as earnings, the amount of desired monthly annuity, age, state of health, and insurability.

Most insurances which protect from inability to work in a given occupation/profession are valid all over Europe, some also worldwide.

Example

Acceptance criteria for an orchestra musician

  • orchestra musician only, permanently employed (no soloist)
  • maximum acceptance age 40 years (woodwind/brass player: 35 years)
  • insurance term until a maximum final age of 55 years (woodwind/brass player: 50 years)
  • monthly annuity maximum of EUR 1,000  

Non-binding tariff examples

age 30 years, annuity EUR 1,000, occupation: director premium EUR 95 monthly
age 30 years, annuity EUR 1,000, occupation: copywriter premium EUR 75 monthly

Alternatives

Basic ability and critical-illness insurances and accident policy add-ons may serve as an alternative to occupational disability insurance.

Critical illness insurance, also known as critical illness cover or dread disease policy, is a form of personal insurance the benefits of which are disbursed when the person contracts a strictly defined severe illness (e.g. cancer) of the person insured and mostly provide for a (tax free) lump-sum payment upon occurrence of the event insured.

If extended by riders, private life insurance may provide protection in the case of disability. Insurance experts can provide advice on the different products and come up with a customised offer.