Register unemployed Unfortunately this specification of service has not yet been completely translated.

If you wish to apply for unemployment benefits, you must register for unemployment in person at the employment agency responsible for your place of residence.

When you register as unemployed, unemployment benefits are generally considered to have been applied for, unless you make a different declaration. Separate documents are required for the application for unemployment benefits.

It is therefore important that you come to the employment agency responsible for you no later than the 1st day of your unemployment in order to register for unemployment in person. You can also register as unemployed in person earlier. However, this is legally possible at the earliest 3 months before you become unemployed.

Please note: Unemployment benefits are paid at the earliest from the day on which you personally registered as unemployed.

It is not a problem if the Employment Agency is closed on weekends or holidays, for example, and you are therefore unable to register for unemployment in person on the 1st day after your employment ends. If you register for unemployment in person on the next day that the Employment Agency is open again, your unemployment registration will be retroactive.

If your unemployment is interrupted for more than 6 weeks, for example because you have found a job or are doing an internship, then your unemployment registration is no longer valid. If you are unemployed again after that, you must register for unemployment again in person.

The effect of the unemployment registration expires if you take up gainful employment - regardless of its duration - and have not informed your employment agency of this immediately.

If you are temporarily unable to work and the Employment Agency is not open on the 1st day of your recovery, you should register as unemployed on the last day of your incapacity for work at the latest. Otherwise, you could suffer disadvantages.

If you are receiving sick pay and your health insurance company has informed you that this entitlement will expire and that you will not be able to resume your previous employment, it is also possible to register for unemployment in person if you are still on sick leave.

If you are ill or have other health restrictions and cannot register for unemployment in person, you can also appoint a substitute to do it for you. However, you must then immediately report in person to your employment agency as soon as the reason for your inability to work no longer applies.

From January 1, 2022, you will also be able to register as unemployed electronically in the specialist portal of the Federal Employment Agency.

  • Identity card with current registration address
  • Passport/replacement document in conjunction with a current registration certificate
  • From January 1, 2022 for electronic unemployment registration: online ID card function of the ID card, an electronic residence permit or an eID card

Forms: none
Written form required: no
Personal appearance required: yes
Online procedure possible: as of January 1, 2022


You are unemployed or you expect to become unemployed within the next 3 months.

Related Links

  • § 141 Sozialgesetzbuch Drittes Buch (SGB III)
  • § 145 Sozialgesetzbuch Drittes Buch (SGB III)
  • § 323 Sozialgesetzbuch Drittes Buch (SGB III)
  • § 327 Sozialgesetzbuch Drittes Buch (SGB III)

Related Links

  • Informationen zur Arbeitslosmeldung und zum Arbeitslosengeld auf der Internetseite der Bundesagentur für Arbeit
  • Merkblatt für Arbeitslose der Bundesagentur für Arbeit (Ihre Rechte - Ihre Pflichten)

You must register as unemployed in person at the employment agency responsible for your place of residence:

  • Appear in person at your responsible employment agency during opening hours and bring an identification document with a current registration address, for example, your ID card. You do not need to make an appointment.
  • You will receive the information you need to apply for unemployment benefits and an appointment with your placement specialist. You can apply for unemployment benefits online at

Responsible for the content
Federal Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs

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