Obtaining a work visa for Germany is the dream of many and for good reasons.
Germany is one of Europe’s most important and influential nations.
It is a land of opportunities, offering a wide array of jobs for foreign workers.
Prominent industry sectors in Germany include the automotive, electrical, and construction sectors, among many others.
That’s why lots of workers worldwide are interested in joining Germany’s labor market and taking advantage of its competitive salaries.
If you, too, want to work in Germany, you need to obtain a valid work visa.
This article guides you through the process of applying for a work visa for Germany and obtaining a residence permit.
What You Need to Know Before Applying for a Work Visa for Germany
If the idea of finding a job in Germany appeals to you, you need to start by getting a job offer from a local employer.
Next, you must secure a work visa.
This requirement applies to most non-EU workers.
You can apply for a visa at the German Embassy or Consulate located in your home country.
Alternatively, you may be able to apply at the relevant Germany VFS Visa Application Center.
This is because some German Embassies have contracted VFS Global, a major provider of consular services for embassies and diplomatic missions, to handle visa applications.
We strongly recommend you schedule an appointment well in advance at your local Embassy, Consulate, or Germany VFS Visa Application Center.
This precaution is necessary because appointment slots tend to fill up quickly.
After booking a visa appointment, you can start collecting the supporting documents.
Germany Work Visa: Application Requirements
Typically, German Embassies and Consulates request the following documents for a work visa application:
- Germany national visa application form fully completed and signed
- Passport with at least two blank pages. The passport must have a minimum validity of three months beyond the intended duration of the visa
- At least two recently taken photographs of 35mm in width and 45 mm in height
- Suitable German health insurance
- Employer’s declaration (Erklärung zum Beschäftigungsverhältnis) completed and signed by your employer
- Original employment contract
- University degree, professional certificates, occupation practice permit, or other relevant certificates
- Professional curriculum vitae
- Proof of a clean criminal record
- Proof of accommodation
- Proof of paid visa fee (€75)
Please note that the requirements listed above are not exhaustive.
German Embassies and Consulates reserve the right to request additional documentation.
After Submitting Your Application
After submitting your visa application, you must wait for the Embassy to process it.
The application process for a German work visa may take up to 3 months.
If the diplomatic mission approves your visa, you can travel to Germany.
Once you’ve entered Germany, you must visit the nearest Immigration Office (Ausländerbehörde) to convert your visa into a temporary residence permit.
It’s best to do this as soon as you can, as there may be a waiting period of several weeks before securing an appointment.
The duration of your residence permit depends on the duration of your employment contract which can be up to four years.
You can extend your residence permit as long as your employment status remains unchanged.