Reich Insurance Code

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Basic data
Title: Reich Insurance Code
Abbreviation: RVO
Type: Federal law
Scope: Federal Republic of Germany
Legal matter: Social law
References : 820-1
Original version from: July 19, 1911
( RGBl. P. 509)
Entry into force on: July 19, 1911 - January 1, 1914
New announcement from: December 15, 1924
(RGBl. I p. 779)
Last change by: Art. 7 G of 23 October 2012
( Federal Law Gazette I p. 2246, 2262 )
Effective date of the
last change:
October 30, 2012
(Art. 16 para. 1 G of October 23, 2012)
GESTA : M023
Please note the note on the applicable legal version.
Postage stamp for the 100th anniversary of the RVO

The Reich Insurance Code was the core of German social law from 1912 (the year it came into force) until 1992 . Since 1975 it has been gradually replaced by the Social Security Code .

The legal historian Michael Stolleis described the Reich Insurance Code as a “prime example of the high standard of […] legislative art” of the early 20th century.


The Reich Insurance Code was passed on July 19, 1911 as the legal basis of the welfare state in Germany . In it the law of the workers' health insurance, the accident insurance law as well as the disability and old age insurance law were summarized in a set of rules. The RVO originally consisted of 1805 paragraphs. According to the Civil Code, it was the most extensive law in the German Empire .


The Reich Insurance Code consisted of six parts called "books":

The first book - common part - contained regulations that applied to all branches of social security. The second book contained the law of the statutory health insurance , the third book that of the statutory accident insurance and the fourth book the law of the statutory pension insurance of the workers. The fifth book regulated the relationships of the social security agencies to each other and to other obligated parties as well as the hiking insurance . The sixth book contained procedural rules.


Soon after it came into force, those applying the law complained about the unmanageability of the RVO: “Working with the Reich Insurance Code has become a torture”, complained the Bavarian government councilor Franz Eichelsbacher in 1921. “The body of law has been in existence since 1914 and especially since the overthrow so many additions and amendments have been made that often only those who are able to recognize the real legal situation who constantly have to deal with the law. "

In the second half of the 20th century it became clear that the RVO had become confusing due to many additions and additions. Therefore, from 1975 onwards, the Social Security Code (SGB) was drawn up, which replaced the RVO in many areas.

In 1988, the statutory health insurance was spun off as the fifth book of the social code by the health reform law , and in 1992 the statutory pension insurance as the sixth book of the social code . On January 1, 1997 the law of the statutory accident insurance was transferred from the Reich Insurance Code to the new Seventh Book of the Social Security Code .

In 2012, with the Nursing Reorientation Act, the benefits for pregnancy and maternity were transferred to SGB V as Sections 24c to 24i . Since then, the RVO only regulates the legal relationships of civil servants and service staff at health insurance funds ( sections 349 to 360 RVO).

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. Michael Stolleis: The machine house of the welfare state. In: FAZ of July 14, 2011, p. 6.
  2. Changes due to the Nursing Reorientation Act (PNG)