How to sign up for state health insurance in Croatia

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Croatian state health insurance called “obvezno zdravstveno osiguranje” is required for all residents of the Republic of Croatia (EXCEPT in specific cases). People insured by obvezno health insurance in Croatia are provided with the same rights under equal conditions.

The institution responsible for the enforcement of rights from obvezno health insurance in Croatia is HZZO – Hrvatski zavod za zdravstveno osiguranje (Croatian Health Insurance Fund).

In this post, we cover:

The facts are these…

Who must have obvezno health insurance

Obvezno health insurance is regulated by the Compulsory Health Insurance Act (Zakon o obveznom zdravstvenom osiguranju), which is available here.

Obvezno health insurance is mandatory for:

  • Croatian residents with permanent residence (prebivalište) or temporary residence (boravište) in Croatia
  • Foreigners with temporary or permanent residence in Croatia
  • Citizens of EU Member States with a granted temporary stay in Croatia who work for an employer with headquarters in Croatia or perform economic or professional activity, if the conditions are met according to special regulations governing the issue of residence and work of foreigners in Croatia and unless otherwise is determined by an international agreement or a special law
  • Third-country (non-EU) citizens with a granted temporary stay in Croatia who work for an employer with headquarters in Croatia or perform an economic or professional activity, if the conditions are met according to special regulations governing the issue of residence and work of foreigners in Croatia and unless otherwise is determined by an international agreement or a special law

The following groups are EXEMPT from signing up for Croatia’s state health insurance:

  • EU citizens who have state health insurance in another EU/EEA Member State
  • Third-country nationals who have state health insurance in another EU/EEA Member State just like other citizens of EU Member States
  • Third-country nationals granted temporary residence based on being a digital nomad

In Croatia, you can sign up for the obvezno health insurance for:

  • Yourself (osiguranik)
  • Another person who is your family member (osigurana osoba član obitelji)

A detailed list of everyone who must have obvezno health insurance in Croatia is available here.

[Read: Healthcare and health insurance in Croatia]

Who can be insured as a family member

Family members can get obvezno health insurance through the primary family member’s obvezno health insurance in certain cases.

To get obvezno, family members must have permanent stay (prebivalište) or permanent residence (stalni boravak) in Croatia unless otherwise determined by an international agreement or special law.

Family members who can get the insurance through a primary member’s obvezno given that they meet the permanent stay criteria include:

  • Spouses
    • Marital spouses
    • Common-law spouses
  • Children
    • Born in a marriage
    • Born out of marriage
    • Adopted children
    • Stepchildren
    • Children without parents if the insured person supports them
  • Parents – father, mother, stepfather, stepmother, and adoptive parents if the following conditions are met:
    • They are incapable of independent living and work.
    • They have no means of subsistence.
    • The insured person supports them.
  • Grandchildren, siblings, grandparents if the following conditions are met:
    • They are incapable of independent living and work.
    • They have no means of subsistence.
    • The insured person supports them.

Croatian nationals with foreign pension

Croatian nationals who receive a foreign pension from certain countries and don’t receive Croatian pension have the right to obvezno health insurance in Croatia at the expense of the competent health insurance provider from the country where they receive a pension. The same rules are applied to their family members.

Those countries are:

  • Another EU/EEA Member State
  • Bosnia and Herzegovina
  • Montenegro
  • North Macedonia
  • Serbia
  • Turkey

In this case, it is recommended to contact their competent foreign health insurance provider before moving to Croatia. They will provide information on rights and certificates required for regulating obvezno health insurance in Croatia.

Those who receive foreign pensions from other countries must pay obvezno health insurance in Croatia at their own expense.

Cost of obvezno health insurance

In Croatia, obvezno health insurance is paid on a monthly basis. Usually, the amount is calculated according to 16,5% of the average monthly “bruto” paid salary for the previous year. However, the exact amount depends on your situation. The tax administration (Porezna uprava) calculates the amount of monthly health insurance for each person according to their situation.

If you are a third-country national and you move to Croatia, you will have to pay a year of premiums for the previous year when signing up for the first time. If you move from the EU Member State or you are a Croatian returnee, you must pay the same “back pay” for any months during the last year when you weren’t insured.

[Read: Croatia’s state health care obvezno insurance, what it costs and what is included]

When to change the status of obvezno health insurance

Any change to your obvezno must be registered in a regional office of HZZO. Changes must be registered within 8 days from the day of the occurrence, change, or termination of the consequences on the basis of which the obvezno health insurance is acquired.

If you leave Croatia for a certain period and lose your residence, you cannot freeze or pause your insurance. Instead, you must sign off from obvezno. This means that if you’d like to come back in the future, you must sign up again. However, if you come back and sign up for obvezno in a period of 30 days from arrival, you don’t have to pay 1 year of premiums for the previous year again.

If you don’t have a Croatian address, then you cannot have obvezno.

Insured people who lost the right to obvezno can use their rights for 30 days from the date of termination of their status of the insured person. However, it is important to have obvezno due to the many rights it entitles you to. [Read: Why you must have health insurance]

People with obvezno have the right to:

  • Health care
  • Financial compensation

How to sign up for obvezno health insurance

Below are the steps for signing up for obvezno state health insurance in Croatia.

#1 Collect the documentation

The required documentation can differ depending on the basis on which you sign up for obvezno. There are 59 possible categories into which you can be classified. You can find all categories at the end of the Rulebook on the manner of registration and deregistration and the acquisition of the status of an insured person in compulsory health insurance, which is available here.

At the end of the Rulebook, you will find the section Popis osnova osiguranja u obveznom zdravstvenom osiguranju, which means List of insurance basis in compulsory health insurance. This list includes 59 categories on the basis of which you can get health insurance in Croatia.

To find the documentation that you must enclose, first find your category in the column Osnove osiguranja u obveznom zdravstvenom osiguranju. After you find the category, see the list of documents in the column Dokumentacija potrebna za utvrđivanje statusa osigurane osobe/osiguranika osobe u obveznom zdravstvenom osiguranju.

If you are a foreign national, you must enclose proof of your residence in Croatia. You don’t have to wait until MUP gives you a residence card. Confirmation of your residence from MUP is sufficient. This confirmation is called “potvrda o prebivalištu/boravištu”.

To give you an idea of what you might need, we have included the necessary documentation for the most common scenarios.

1. People with prebivalište, i.e. a permanent stay in Croatia who are not insured on other grounds

  • Application form T-1 – Download this form here
  • OIB (personal identification number)
  • Proof of residence or approved permanent stay
    • Certificate from MUP OR
    • ID card
  • Proof of termination of employment or performance of activities

2. Nationals of the EU Member States or third-country nationals with a granted temporary stay in Croatia who are not insured on other grounds

  • Application form T-2 – Download this form here
  • OIB (personal identification number)
  • Certificate from MUP on a granted temporary stay
  • Registration number (evidencijski broj)
  • If an EU citizen, proof that you are not insured by the state health fund in your country of nationality

3. People employed by employers with a headquarters in Croatia (their employers will sign them up)

  • Application form T-2 – Download this form here
  • OIB (personal identification number)
  • Application form HZMO (M-1P)
  • Work contract or written confirmation of the contract
  • Work permit for foreigners
  • Decision on disability from HZMO for disabled people

#2 Fill out the application form

Two different application forms for obvezno are available, so be sure that you have the right one. You can get the application form online or at a regional HZZO administration office.

Available application forms are below:

  • For yourself – Download this form here
  • For a family member or dependent – Download this form here

#3 Visit HZZO

To sign up for obvezno, go to any regional office of the HZZO. View the list of offices here.

You may also pick up a form at HZZO. If you are not sure how to fill out the form, you can ask an HZZO employee for help.

If you are required to pay premiums for the previous year, you will need to show proof of payment as part of your registration. HZZO will give you the payment instructions.

#4 Get the health insurance card

If you are applying for obvezno health insurance for the very first time, you will receive a health insurance card called “Iskaznica zdravstveno osigurane osobe”. Croatians usually call it “zdravstvena iskaznica” or “zdravstvena” for short.

It can take some time for this card to show up in the mail, but that doesn’t mean you are not insured. After you sign up, you will get a paper that confirms that you signed up for the obvezno. You can give that paper to a doctor to look up your health insurance status until you get your zdravstvena.

Your health insurance is tied to your OIB identification number.

e-Zdravstveno service for business owners

If you are a business owner in Croatia, you can use an online service called “e-Zdravstveno”. This tool allows the usage of certain services of the HZZO. It is available here.

Online service e-Zdravstveno allows business owners to:

  • Download application forms
  • Sign up their employees for obvezno
  • Sign up spouses or children up to the age of 18 of their employees
  • Sign up newborn children of their employees
  • Change the name, surname, or address of stay/residence
  • Sign off from obvezno

To sign up for e-Zdravstveno, you must fill out an application form. It can be downloaded here.

After you fill out the form, deliver it to HZZO:

HZZO will send you an e-mail notification on the activation of your e-Zdravstveno account. After you get this e-mail, you can use the online service.

[Read: Types of businesses in Croatia]

Status change and termination

If you want to change the status or terminate your obvezno, the procedure is the same. You must go to HZZO and fill out the same application form for yourself or another person.

At the top of the application form, mark:

  • Prijava – If you want to sign in to obvezno
  • Promjena – If you want to change the status of obvezno
  • Odjava – If you want to terminate the obvezno

Contact information for applying

If you have any questions regarding changing your status of obvezno, you can contact HZZO. They are available:

View our other health insurance posts


Source:
https://hzzo.hr/
https://gov.hr/hr/obvezno-zdravstveno-osiguranje/288
https://gov.hr/hr/zdravstveno-osiguranje-2016/2016

Please note: All information provided by Expat in Croatia is only for the purposes of guidance. It does not constitute legal advice in any form. For legal advice, you must consult with a licensed Croatian lawyer. We can recommend one if you contact us.

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