Work Visa and Registration

It’s quite astonishing: Germany is – the right qualifications and job market situation provided – a country of immigration. If you meet those requirements, you can simply go to the embassy and board a plane to Germany shortly after >>

But be careful! With very few exceptions, unless you come from another EU country, Iceland, Liechtenstein or Norway you have to apply for your visa at a German embassy before entering the country. Only citizens of Australia, Canada, Japan, New Zealand, South Korea, and the United States can apply for their residence title at their local foreigners office after entering Germany.

The visa issued by the embassy is valid for 90 days and has to be exchanged for a longer-term residence title during that period. The application has to be made in person by the applicants themselves. The proceedings can be quite involved and complicated, depending on which type of residence title you need (e.g. Blue Card or international workforce mobility) different documents and supporting evidence have to be presented. PROGEDO offers a full service where an experienced relocation manager accompanies you to all appointments when you have to be present in person, helps you compile the necessary documentation and collects the residence title for you when it’s been granted. Click here for an overview of all our PROGEDO relocation services.

Fig.: The electronic residence title – the German acronym is eAT – must be applied for at the local foreigners office. Be careful: Some residence titles come with restrictions regarding your employment or other matters [Source: BAMF]

Another important step is the registration of your address with the municipal registration office. In Germany the authorities keep a register of every inhabitant’s place of residence. Therefore, you have to register with the registration office responsible for the address you’re currently staying at. You ought to do this immediately because without the document confirming your registration you practically don’t “exist”. No tax number, to bank account, no car registration, and so on. Unfortunately, in many towns you have to wait a very long time for an appointment. If you book this service with PROGEDO relocation, you will often find you have an appointment within a few days and in some municipalities you don’t even have to go in person but can give power of attorney to your relocation consultant. It doesn’t get any faster or easier.

EU citizens don’t need residence titles. However, they are required to register with their municipal registration office just like every other German or foreign national residing in Germany.