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Allgemeines Sozialversicherungsgesetz, ASVG#

Allgemeines Sozialversicherungsgesetz (General Law on Social Insurance) ASVG, 1955 (entered into force on January 1, 1965), governs compulsory unemployment, health, accident and pension insurance for employees of companies as well as optional insurance (except accident insurance); by 1999, 55 amendments had been introduced in order to adapt social insurance laws to current circumstances. Separate social insurance laws exist for independent trades (GSVG), farmers (BSVG), civil servants (B-KUVG) as well as independent professions and notaries public (FSVG and NVG). According to the principles of this insurance, the employer and employee pay social insurance contributions as a percentage of the employee's income ( for accident insurance, only the employer´s contribution is taken into account). Because these contributions are insufficient to cover the benefits rendered, state subsidies are necessary, esp. for pension insurance.

In the case of illness, medical attention, medication and hospital care as well as sick pay are granted, in the case of work-related injuries, accidents or illnesses, rehabilitation, disability benefits and benefits for surviving dependents are provided by the health insurance. Pension insurance grants benefits for reasons of reduced ability to work (disability or invalidity pension) and age (retirement or early retirement pension) as well as rehabilitation measures.

Responsibility for decision-making is primarily in the hands of the social insurance institutions; it is also possible to file suit against decisions in benefit matters at the competent Labour and Social Tribunals.

Further reading#

K. Grillberger, Oesterreichisches Sozialrecht, 1990.