Do you have a temporary residency permit? Following the expiry of a fixed period of time, you can obtain a permanent residency permit which is unlimited in terms of time and area.
With the permanent residency, you are entitled to work. This can only be obtained in exceptional cases (for example ban on political activities) and, in particular, provides protection against deportation.
Note: Holders of a (temporary) residency permit for the purpose of studying or undertaking professional training cannot obtain a permanent residency permit.
The authority for foreign nationals (Ausländerbehörde), where your primary residence is located.
The authority for foreign nationals is the city council (Stadtverwaltung) or the regional countil office (Landratsamt) depending on your place of residence.
- The requirements for the permanent residency permit are:
Your identity is clear and you fulfil the passport requirement.
In respect of the passport requirements, it suffices if you are in possession of a replacement identity car.
- Your maintenance costs are covered, without you needing recourse to public funds.
Your maintenance costs are deemed to be covered if:
- you generate income to the amount of the standard rate of social assistance plus
- costs for accommodation and heating, as well as
- any health insurance contributions.
No reason for deportation exists against you if:
- You do not have any previous criminal convictions.
- Your stay does not endanger or impair the interests of the Federal Republic of Germany.
- You have had a residency permit for five years.
- Depending on the purpose of the stay for which you have received the residency permit, other time periods can apply.
- You have paid contributions to the state pension fund or to another comparable pension scheme for five years.
- You are allowed to carry out employment and possess all necessary permits in this respect.
- You have sufficient command of the German language, as well as basic knowledge of German law and the German social system.
- You have sufficient accommodation for yourself and your family.
Note: In some cases, other requirements and lengths of stay apply. You can find more information on our webpages for the following groups of persons:
- Highly skilled
- Graduates from German institutions of higher education
- Holders of an EU Blue Card
- Previous holders of German citizenship
- The self-employed
- Family members of German citizens (husband or wife, single children who are underage).
- Persons entitled to asylum and convention refugees
You must apply for the permanent residency permit in writing from the foreigners authority of
your principal place of residence. Depending on the place of residence, the foreigners authority is the city council or the rural district office.
You receive the permanent residency permit in the form of a check card with additional electronic functions. You can find further information concerning this at "Elektronischen Aufenthaltstitel (eAT) beantragen".
- Proof of compliance with the passport and visa obligation
- Proof of ensured maintenance
- Proof that no reason for deportation exists against you
- Proof that you do not endanger or impair the interests of the Federal Republic of Germany
- Proof that you do not have any previous criminal convictions
- Proof that you have been in possession of a residency permit for five years
- Proof of payment of state pension contributions or payments to a comparable pension scheme
- Proof that you may carry out employment and possess the necessary permits in this respect
- Proof of sufficient command of the German language, as well as basic knowledge of German law and the German social system
- You have sufficient accommodation for yourself and your family
Permanent residency permit for the self-employed: 200 euros
Note: Special regulations apply in relation to minors.
The German original version of this text was drafted in close cooperation with the relevant departments. The Innenministerium released it on 30.04.2015. Only the German text is legally binding. The Federal State does not assume any liability for the translated texts.
In cases of doubt or if you have any questions or problems, please contact the relevant authorities directly.