Pension fund for architects - registering as a member
This pension fund provides the following benefits for members and their surviving dependants:
- old-age pensions
- occupational disability pensions
- provisions for surviving dependants
- child benefit (only if the member has been granted an old-age pension or occupational disability pension)
- lump-sum settlements for surviving spouses or civil partners who lose their pension entitlements on remarrying
Note: Additional benefits (e.g. meeting the costs of convalescent care or medical rehabilitation measures, death benefit, subsidies towards health and nursing care insurance) are not provided.
All members of the pension fund must pay contributions as long as they do not receive an old-age pension or occupational disability pension. Minimum and maximum contributions are set, and the amount paid depends on the nature of the member’s work. The contributions are regulated as follows:
- for self-employed persons, the regular contribution is 18 percent of the assessment threshold set for state pension insurance. You can apply to pay reduced contributions during the first five years of your membership.
- Employees pay the same amount as they would to the state pension insurance scheme.
Most employers deduct the membership contributions from their employees’ salaries and send them directly to the pension fund. If you are employed, please give your membership number to your employer and inform him that you are exempted from payments into the state pension scheme. If you are not employed, or if your employer does not pay the contributions directly to the pension fund, you must pay the contributions yourself. You can download a direct debit authorisation form from the internet.
Tip: You can get an overview of the regulations for self-employed persons, employees and civil servants on the website of the Baden-Württemberg Chamber of Architects’ pension fund.
the pension fund of the Baden-Württemberg Chamber of Architects (VWDA)
All members of the following chambers are obliged to participate in the pension fund:
- Baden-Württemberg Chamber of Architects
- Schleswig-Holstein Chamber of Architects and Engineers
- Hamburg Chamber of Architects
You may not become a member of the pension fund if
- you will be 55 years or older at the time your participation would begin
- you have an occupational disability at this time, or
- you have your own pension entitlements as a civil servant.
Note: Exemption from obligatory participation is only possible for
- members of the Chamber of Architects who are registered as employees, provided they pay contributions to the state pension insurance scheme
- members of the Chamber of Architects who were already members of other occupational pension schemes at the time they became eligible
The pension fund will be notified automatically as soon as you become a member of the Chamber. You will then be sent all the necessary information and documents. Therefore you do not need to register yourself in advance.
Tip: When you apply, you can also request exemption from your obligation to pay contributions into the state pension scheme in favour of the pension fund. The application form for exemption is available from the pension fund, or you can download it from the internet. Complete and sign this form and send it to the pension fund. This is a supplement to your membership registration and will be forwarded to the Deutsche Rentenversicherung Bund (German statutory insurance pension scheme).
If you meet the conditions of membership, the pension fund will give you a membership number. You should quote this number in all future correspondence with the pension fund.
for registration: as soon as you meet the requirements for participation
- copy of passport or personal ID card
- evidence that you are registered in the list of the respective Chamber of Architects
- if you are employed: a copy of your employment contract
- if you are not employed: evidence of your work status (e.g. certificate of appointment if you work as a civil servant)
- if already available: proof of income (e.g. income tax statement if you are self-employed, confirmation of remuneration if you are employed)
- Registration: none
- Membership: obligatory monthly contribution
The German original version of this text was drafted in close cooperation with the relevant departments. The Wirtschaftsministerium released it on 27.10.2017. Only the German text is legally binding. The Federal State does not assume any liability for the translated texts.
In cases of doubt or if you have any questions or problems, please contact the relevant authorities directly.