With the introduction of long-term care insurance (LTCI) in 1995/96, Germany established a universal long-term care scheme within a cost containment framework to provide public support in defined situations of care dependency. The scheme aimed to promote ageing in place with an emphasis on public support for family care provision as a precondition. A further aim was the expansion of market-oriented professional care services to offer users a choice between family and professional care provision and care providers. The focus of this study is on the interplay of formal and informal family care provision within the institutional framework of LTCI, as well as the organisation, regulations and mix of different types of formal care services. In a first step, an examination of the interplay of formal and informal care provision shows the largely family-oriented care strategy, the burdened situation of informal carers, the mix of rationalities of service use and their interrelationship with socioeconomic inequality. In a second step, an analysis of the organisation of different types of formal services reveals paid care provision that emerges in the interplay of politicians’ strategies to develop professional care services within the framework of LTCI, bottom-up strategies of users to increase the range of services outside the framework of LTCI and efforts of politicians to regulate the latter. Basic orientations of care provision underlying the development process such as user orientation, quality and comprehensiveness guided the process and are used to analyse the development. Finally, the discussion of the situation of care workers reveals a contradictory picture with increasing employment opportunities, a comparably well-qualified workforce and worsening employment conditions. Empirically, the research is based on an institutional analysis of LTCI combined with a literature review and representative statistics.