The European Commission is of the opinion that the introduction of a European services e-card would simplify the fulfilment of mandatory administrative formalities associated with the delivery of services in another member state. As a basic principle, it is the view of the umbrella associations of the German social insurance system that the Commission’s proposal is to be welcomed. On closer scrutiny, the draft legislation presented at the start of the year nevertheless features a number of items which require clarification. In particular, amendments to the current wording are essential if, as the European Commission intends, the legislation is to exclude statutory social insurance from the e-card’s area of application without ambiguity and with the requisite degree of legal security.
The proposed legislation does not provide a clear and consistent definition of the intended area of application for the services e-card. On the basis of the intentions expressed in both the Commission’s deliberations and the legislative text itself, social insurance is to be excluded from the e-card’s area of application. This explicit exclusion is nevertheless contradicted by the fact that social insurance is named in individual clauses included in the current draft. The resultant points of contact between the draft legislation and social insurance are a cause of uncertainty, as the extent to which the proposed legislation will impact German social insurance institutions and the coordination of social insurance systems within the EU remains unclear.
With this in mind, the German Social Insurance appeals to the Council and the European Parliament to amend the legislation proposed by the Commission in such a way as to ensure that social insurance is clearly and absolutely – i.e. including in connection with all of the aforementioned points of contact – excluded from the area of application for the services e-card.
On January 10th 2017, the Commission presented proposals for a regulation and a directive [COM (2016) 823 and 824 final] aimed at simplifying the fulfilment of mandatory administrative formalities associated with the delivery of services in another member state (as reported by the DSV). The proposals initially only apply to corporate services and construction services.
To read the full statement from the German Social Insurance on this issue, please click here. The English-language statement will be available soon.