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The German Pensions Insurance

Social Security Performance

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German Pensions In The US

Pensions From Foreign Countries

Social Security And Divorce

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Social Security Performance

The German Social Security Insurance offers the following: 

a pension at age 65 the latest,


disability benefits in case you are not able to work prior to turning 65,


survivor benefits in case of the death of a spouse,


benefits if you are raised as an orphan up to age 27,


benefits for a divorced spouse raising one or more children.

Insured people who have contributed into the system for quite a long time can apply for a pension at an earlier age.

At present the age when women can receive social security payments is being step-by-step raised to 65. For workers new to the system the age will be raised to 67.

In case an insured worker becomes so ill that it is apparent that he or she will not be able to go back to work for quite some time, that worker can apply for disability benefits.

Those benefits will be granted on a limited basis and the amount of the benefits will depend on the number and amount of paid contributions as well as on the degree of the disability.

In case of the death of a spouse the surviving spouse (depending on the age) can apply for survivor benefits. Those benefits will, however, be partially charged against the survivor's own income – be it in the form of a pension or any income through work.

In case one or both parents of a child die before the child turns 18, the surviving child can receive semi- or full orphan benefits.

If the surviving child is still in job-training or any other job-related schooling the age limit will go up to 27.In case a divorced spouse dies, the surviving divorced spouse can under certain conditions apply for special benefits to help pay for a child's education.

Conditions for receiving a pension

In order to receive Social Security benefits you have to meet the following qualifications:

You will receive a pension at age 65 provided you have observed the mandatory waiting period of a minimum of 60 months.

Women who were born before 1952 can already receive their benefits at age 60 provided they have after turning 40 accumulated a minimum of 120 months of contributions and have observed a waiting period of at least 15 years.

Insured persons who were born before January 2nd 1961 are entitled to a disability pension if they, during the 5 years prior to becoming disabled, have at least a period of 18 months of contributions and if they have observed the mandatory waiting period of 60 months (see above).

Insured persons who were born after January 1st 1961 can (by observing the same conditions as above) receive a pension due to partial or full disability.

In order to receive survivor benefits the deceased spouse must have observed a waiting period of at least 5 years or was already drawing a pension.

In order to receive semi- or full orphan benefits or for the guardian to receive benefits for raising a child a mandatory waiting period of at least 5 years must have been observed.

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Office for Foreign Social Securities (ofss)
P.O.Box 1113, Cedar Crest, NM 87008
e- mail:

Tel.: 1-505-328-7777