Residence permit; application for the purpose of gainful employment (Skilled Workers Immigration Act)

The Skilled Workers Immigration Act came into force on 1 March 2020 and expands the possibilities for the immigration of skilled workers. The Skilled Workers Immigration Act comprehensively regulates the entire area of migration for the purpose of "training" and "gainful employment". The focus is on skilled workers.Skilled workers are foreignerswho have a German university degree, a recognised foreign university degree or a foreign university degree comparable to a German university degree (= skilled workers with academic training) ordomestic qualified vocational training or an equivalent foreign vocational qualification (= skilled workers with vocational training).have.Foreigners who are third-country nationals generally require a residence title to take up employment in Germany. Since 1 March 2020, every third-country national who is in possession of a residence title is allowed to pursue gainful employment, unless there is a legal prohibition.For skilled workers (see above), the following applies: if an employment contract and a recognised qualification (university degree or qualified vocational training) are available, they can work in all occupations to which their qualification qualifies them under the new regulation.Furthermore, since 1 March 2020 it has been possible, under certain conditions, to obtain a residence permit to look for a job and to look for a training place within the framework of potential immigration for skilled workers (see above). In this context, proof of the existence of a specific job before entering Germany to take up gainful employment is not required.In addition, third-country nationals may, under certain conditions, immigrate to Germany to take up employment, irrespective of whether they are qualified.As a rule, the Federal Employment Agency continues to be involved in the granting of a residence permit. However, as a matter of principle, there is no check as to whether the job could be filled by a German or a Union citizen living in the Federal territory (priority check). In the case of skilled workers with vocational training, the previous restriction to shortage occupations no longer applies.Residence permits for skilled workers with training acquired abroad generally require the equivalence of the qualification. Since foreign qualifications and German requirements often do not correspond exactly, equivalence must be determined within the framework of a recognition procedure. If it was not possible to establish the full equivalence of the training acquired abroad prior to entry, it is possible, under certain conditions, to obtain a residence permit for subsequent qualification for the purpose of recognising the qualification acquired abroad and to take up qualified employment while still undergoing qualification. Appropriate service centres are set up for skilled workers seeking recognition.

As a rule, however, the following documents are required:valid passportcurrent biometric photograph (frontal photograph)proof of compliance with passport and visa requirementsProof of health insurance coverage Proof of university degreeProof of job or job offerThe documents to be submitted may vary widely.

Entry for employment as a skilled worker: Prerequisites for a residence permit for employment as a skilled worker are in particular thata concrete job offer for a qualified occupation to which the acquired qualification qualifies is availablethe Federal Employment Agency has agreed - without a priority check - whether the position can be filled by a German or a Union citizena licence to practise the profession has been granted, insofar as this is requiredthe equivalence of the qualification has been established or a recognised or comparable foreign university degree is availablein the case of first-time issuance to persons aged 45 and over, the amount of the salary corresponds to at least 55 per cent of the annual contribution assessment ceiling in the general pension insurance schemeEntry for training: A foreigner is granted a residence permit for training and further education ifthe Federal Employment Agency has given its approval or the employment is permitted by regulation or intergovernmental agreement and a priority check has been carried outa training contract concluded prior to entry is availablesufficient German language skills (B1 level) have been proventhe livelihood is securedEntry to search for a training place: A foreigner may enter Germany to search for a training place ifhe/she has not yet reached the age of 25,his livelihood is secured,he/she has a degree from a German school abroad or a school-leaving qualification entitling him/her to enter higher educationhe/she has good German language skills (B2 level)Entry for post-qualification and recognition of acquired qualification: A foreigner may be granted a residence permit for post-qualification for the purpose of recognition of his/her professional qualification under certain conditions. During the recognition procedure, the foreigner may already be employed in the desired occupational field. By exercising the employment, knowledge and skills can already be used and deepened in a professional environment, furthermore the livelihood can be secured.Immigration of non-skilled workers: A foreigner can obtain a residence permit for the purpose of employment, irrespective of whether he or she is qualified as a skilled worker, if this is permitted by regulation or intergovernmental agreement. This also applies, under certain conditions, to foreigners working in the ICT sector.Entry for the purpose of seeking employment: A foreign skilled worker may be granted a residence permit for up to six months for the purpose of seeking employment which their qualification qualifies them to perform.Accelerated procedure for skilled workers: Under the accelerated procedure, companies in Germany can obtain the necessary permits for the entry and residence of a skilled worker they need much more quickly than before for an increased fee (€411). In this procedure, the future German employer acts on behalf of the foreigner willing to enter Germany. The basis for the accelerated procedure is an administrative agreement between the company and the competent foreigners authority. Information on the accelerated skilled worker procedure as well as on the beneficiary group of persons can be obtained from the foreigners authority where the company for which the employment is to take place has its registered office.Reasons for refusal: A foreigner will not be granted a residence permit under the Skilled Workers Immigration Act if.he/she is staying in a member state of the EU on the basis of an application for refugee status or for subsidiary protection,he/she enjoys international protection in a Member State of the EU,he/she is in a Member State of the EU under a temporary protection regime,he or she has lodged an application for temporary protection in a Member State of the EU,he or she is tolerated in a Member State of the EU,he or she is in possession of an EU permanent residence permit,he enjoys the right to free movement of persons.

Responsible for the content
Bayerisches Staatsministerium des Innern und für Integration (Bavarian State Ministry of the Interior and for Integration)

Last update or date of publication