The purpose of this study was the psychometric evaluation of the German version of the dependency scale in nursing homes and on geriatric wards. The 15-item scale was originally developed in the Netherlands for assessing the care dependency of demented and mentally handicapped patients. Data of 81 nursing home residents and of 115 geriatric patients were collected. Residents and patients were assessed several time by professionals and nonprofessionals. Reliability was determined by Cronbach's α, showing very good results with values of 0.94 and 0.98. Inter-rater and intrarater reliability show moderate to substantial Kappa values. Criterion validity was examined by comparing the data of the scale with the German nursing personal regulation and the German statutory insurance. The results show that the scores of the Care Dependency Scale correlate to the scores of the two classifications. In general, the German version of the scale can be recommended for use in nursing homes and on geriatric wards.