The German state supports people with disabilities to compensate for the disadvantages they have to face due to their conditions. This regulation is called "disadvantage compensation" („Nachteilsausgleich“ ). Disabled people can, for instance, benefit from the following:
- Special medical care
- Assistance in job hunting or protection from dismissal
- A household helper
- Support for childcare costs
- Cost-free use of buses & trains
- Early retirement
- Lower taxes
But not every person with a disability is entitled to all of these special supports. Your personal condition determines if such support options apply to you and when so, from which ones you can benefit.
To apply for support from the state, you must first register for a "Disability Card" ("Schwerbehindertenausweis"). Only people with a severe disability (a GdB of 50 or higher) can obtain this card. To apply for a "Disability Card", you must fill the relevant form and hand it in (along with all your medical certificates) to your local Pension Office ("Versorgungsamt"). In case your GdB is lower than 50, you may still be able to benefit from the support you need under some circumstances. To do so, seek help from a counselling centre.
Please note: You can apply for a "Disability Card" regardless of your residence status, which means even if you are still in the asylum procedure or have a Tolerated Stay ("Duldung"), you can still obtain a "Disability Card".