Study visit from Korea on accident insurance for artists

Figure 1: f.o.l.: Pierre Stage, Dr Meike Warncke, Sven Pohl- Knauf, Carolin König, Frank Lahrmann, Stefan Gniza, Dr Jong Eun Oh, Eunjoo Youn, Wonseok Lee, Dr Young Mi Kim, Sung Kyoung Choi, Dr Eunjoo Park, Heewon No, Eckehard Froese
Source: VBG

At the end of May 2023, a delegation from the South Korean Workers' Compensation Insurance and Welfare Service COMWEL visited the VBG in Hamburg with the aim of obtaining information on how artists in Germany are insured against accidents.

The background of the delegation visit is the extension of the scope of the Korean workers' compensation insurance system from "wage earners" to "employed persons" and thus the further closing of coverage gaps in social protection.

Experts from the VBG and BG ETEM from the areas of prevention, benefits and contributions presented various aspects of accident insurance for employed and self-employed people in artistic professions, as well as the possibility of voluntary accident insurance for self-employed artists in Germany. Whereas, for example, employees in the fields of spoken word, music, and visual and performing arts are insured against accidents at VBG, photographers, photojournalists, and graphic designers belong to the group of insured persons at BG ETEM. In addition, the demarcation from the benefits of the social insurance for artists played an important role during the intensive exchange with the delegation members on the part of the COMWEL Research Institute for Work and Welfare under the leadership of the Institute's Director, Dr. Oh.

Based on the findings on accident insurance for artists in Germany and in the social security systems of other countries, standards are now being developed to improve the protection of artists in Korea with targeted measures.

In Germany, the government has also set itself the goal of "promoting art and culture and their diversity and improving the social situation of artists" in its coalition agreement in view of the consequences of the COVID 19 pandemic. The current state-subsidized social insurance of artists and publicists in the Artists’ Social Security Fund (Künstlersozialkasse, KSK) is based on the findings of the Federal Government's 1975 Artists' Report, which at the time noted the precarious situation of self-employed artists. The subsequent Artists' Social Insurance Act regulates the inclusion of self-employed artists and publicists as compulsorily insured persons under the protection of statutory health, long-term care and pension insurance.

The KSK is an independent division of the German Social Accident Insurance Institution of the Federal Government and for the railway services.