Procedure descriptions

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Residence permit for highly qualified job seekers - application

Foreign nationals from non-EU and non-EEA states with certain higher education degrees can receive a residence permit to enable them to look for a job which is appropriate to their qualification. This residence title does not permit them to engage in gainful employment.

The residence permit for highly qualified job seekers is valid for up to six months. An extension is not possible.

Note: The residence permit can be reissued if, on leaving Germany, you remain outside the country for at least as long as you were previously in the country with the residence title.

Responsible authority

  • For issuing a national visa prior to entry into the territory of the Federal Republic of Germany: The German diplomatic mission abroad (embassy, consulate)
  • After entry: 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 council office (Landratsamt) depending on your place of residence.

Useful tip: You can find a Directory of Diplomatic Missions of the Federal Republic of Germany Abroad on the internet pages of the Federal Foreign Office.

Prerequisite

Prerequisites for granting of a residence permit are:

  • You satisfy the passport and visa obligation.
    With respect to the passport obligation, it is sufficient if you possess an alternative identity document.
  • Your subsistence is assured.
    Your subsistence is held to be assured if you generate
    • Income equal to the standard social assistance rate (for example, for single persons 374 euros) plus
    • The costs of accommodation and heating plus
    • Any health insurance contributions.
  • There are no grounds for your expulsion.
  • Your stay does not endanger or prejudice the interests of the Federal Republic of Germany.
  • You do not use the residence title to stay in Germany for any other purpose than that intended.
  • You have
    • a German higher education qualification,
    • a recognised foreign higher education qualification or
    • a foreign higher education qualification that is comparable to a German qualification.

Procedure

Before entering Germany, you may have to apply for a national visa in your own country.

After entry, you must apply for the residence title in writing to the authority for foreign nationals before your visa expires. The authority for foreign nationals is the city council (Stadtverwaltung) or the regional council office (Landratsamt) depending on your place of residence.

As of September 1st, 2011 the residence title is the size of a credit card and it incorporates additional electronic functions. For more detailed information, see "Electronic residence title (eAT) - application".

Required documents

  • Proof that you satisfy the passport and visa obligation
  • Proof that your subsistence is assured
  • Proof that there are no grounds for your expulsion
  • Proof that you do not endanger or prejudice the interests of the Federal Republic of Germany
  • Proof of the university qualification

Costs/Benefits

100 euros

Note: You may be exempted from the fees only in exceptional cases.

Release note

The German original version of this text was drafted in close cooperation with the relevant departments. The Innenministerium released the full description on 27.10.2015. 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.
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