FAQ on handling and processing applications during the corona pandemic

Berlin Immigration Office General Decrees

  • The decrees contain stipulations regarding a number of organisational and residency law measures in connection with the Corona pandemic outbreak. Please refer to our FAQs for more details about the General Decrees.
  • The General Decrees apply for an initial period until 30th September 2020 for foreign nationals for whom the Berlin Immigration Office is the local responsible Foreigners Authority.
  • The General Decrees were published on the website of the Berlin Immigration Office on 25th and 27th March, 6th April and 19th May 2020 and thus publicly announced in accordance with Section 4(4) of the Administrative Procedures Act (VwVfG).

Restriction in Services

  • Yes, Berlin Immigration Office is open. However, in order to protect against the risk of infection we have switched largely to processing customer applications online and in writing.
  • From 4th May 2020 onwards Berlin Immigration Office is serving those customers who registered online or who since 28th April 2020 have been explicitly invited by us to attend an appointment. In such cases you will receive an email invitation or will be requested to submit documentation. Please also check your junk email folder in case the invitation lands there.
  • If you booked or agreed an appointment with us prior to 18th March 2020, this appointment has been cancelled. If you provided us with an email address, you will have received an email notification of this cancellation from us.
  • Limited on-site services for customers at all of our offices continue to be provided in emergencies at our office at Friedrich-Krause-Ufer, Room 80 (House A) during our regular opening hours (Mondays and Tuesdays from 7am to 2pm and Thursdays from 9am to 5pm).
    • It constitutes an emergency if you need to travel for urgent personal or professional reasons. Please bear in mind that holidays do not constitute urgent personal reasons. At the current time we are unable to handle as walk-ins any services beyond such emergencies.
    • Should you need to attend our office for an appointment in an emergency, please ensure you bring the following documents with you:
      • Passport and residency document
      • Completed residency permit application form plus
      • For employees: a recent payslip and a certificate from your employer confirming the necessity to travel abroad (the latter is not required if the necessity is self-evident on account of the nature of the employment, e.g. pilot, cabin crew), or
      • For the self-employed: evidence of the self-employed economic activity and presentation or orders or commissions for which the foreign travel is necessary, or
      • For personal reasons: evidence of the urgent reason for travel abroad, e.g. death certificate, hospital incapacity document, evidence of relatives requiring social care etc.
  • On account of the Corona pandemic we are taking the following hygiene precautions:
    • admission to our offices is only permitted when wearing a mouth-nose covering.
    • in order to protect your children, please do not bring them with you if you have the option to arrange childcare for them.
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  • No, please do not come unasked to your appointment. We ask for your understanding that owing to the pandemic outbreak of the coronavirus we have been forced to reduce our services considerably in order to protect both customers and staff.
  • All appointments booked or agreed prior to 18th March 2020 have been cancelled. We have endeavoured to contact by email all customers who provided an email address when making an appointment online that their appointment has been cancelled. Cancellations are issued around two weeks in advance of appointments. If you have not received an email, please check your junk folder in case it landed there. We ask for your understanding that, in cases where no email address was available, we do not have the capacity to send letters by post cancelling the appointment.
  • Please register using our online forms. We will endeavour to process your enquiry as swiftly as possible. We will be in touch to offer you a new appointment or handle your enquiry in writing.
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  • No, please do not come unasked to your appointment. We ask for your understanding that owing to the pandemic outbreak of the coronavirus we have been forced to reduce our services considerably in order to protect both customers and staff.
  • We will endeavour to send you your electronic residency permit by post as soon as possible. We kindly ask for your understanding that owing to reduced capacity this may take a while.
  • When receiving your eAT by post please do heed the additional important information we provide in the covering letter.
  • If you ordered a travel document as well as an electronic residency permit (eAT), then we must inform you that for reasons of security and in line with national requirements these documents are not sent out by post. If your electronic residence title (eAT) is ready for you to collect, you will receive notification from us in writing.
  • If you already have a temporary residency permit and it expires, please complete this online form.
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  • * No, please do not seek unasked an appointment.
  • We ask for your understanding that owing to the pandemic outbreak of the coronavirus we have been forced to reduce our services considerably in order to protect both customers and staff.
  • If the Federal Office of Migration and Refugees (BAMF) has granted you asylum or refugee status or complementary protection and you do not yet possess a residency permit, the matter will be examined on the circumstances of the case. The responsible office department will then invite you to attend an appointment as soon as possible. We kindly ask for your understanding that owing to reduced capacity it may take a while to process this request.
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  • No, please do not seek unasked an appointment at this time.
  • Provided you remain in possession of both your old and your new passport, entry and exit should continue to be possible without difficulty.
  • We ask for your understanding that owing to the pandemic outbreak of the coronavirus we have been forced to reduce our services considerably in order to protect both customers and staff.
  • We kindly ask you to book an appointment once our normal service has resumed.
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  • No, please do not seek unasked an appointment at this time.
  • If you wish to apply for a permanent residency permit, you can do so by email or post using the application form submitted to the department responsible for your case.
  • Please bear in mind that your application cannot be processed without this form.
  • If your residence permit is still valid, we ask for your patience regarding the processing of your application, since priority must be given to processing applications to extend temporary residence permits. We kindly ask for your understanding. Applications for permanent residence permits will be processed as soon as capacity allows it.
  • If your temporary residence permit is expiring and you wish to apply for a permanent residence permit, please register at the following link. Provided you fulfil the criteria, we will issue you with a permanent residence permit and invite you to an appointment to collect the document.
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  • No, please do not seek unasked an appointment at this time.
  • If you wish to apply for an amendment to a stipulation, please get in contact with the responsible office department by letter or email.
  • We ask for your understanding that owing to the pandemic outbreak of the coronavirus we have been forced to reduce our services considerably in order to protect both customers and staff.
  • We kindly ask for your understanding that, owing to the reduced capacity, applications cannot be processed immediately. We therefore kindly ask for your patience.
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  • No, please do not seek unasked an appointment at this time. The documents cannot be sent by post either.
  • Should you wish apply for an extension of your travel document or replacement document, you can do so by email or post. If you possess an electronic residency permit (a plastic eAT card), you can use it to prove your lawful residency.
  • Please bear in mind however that without a valid travel document you can neither leave nor re-enter Germany.
  • If your residency permit has expired or if it will expire in the next six weeks, please use our online forms.
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  • Please do not come to our office for an appointment. If your residency permit is still valid, it will remain valid even if your passport has expired. Please try to obtain a reissued passport or an extension of your passport’s validity by means of an official stamp or entry. If your state has issued a blanket declaration on the extended validity of all expired passports, we will require proof of this.
  • When your residency permit is up for renewal, you will be required to present your new passport or old passport with extended validity.
  • When extending your residency permits we are currently accepting a temporary official entry or stamp issued by your embassy or consulate in your expired passport or proof of a blanket extension.
  • If your residency permit is expiring soon, please complete our online form.
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  • Please do not come to LEA unless you have an appointment. We kindly ask for your understanding that owing to the COVID-19 pandemic we have been forced to limit our services for the protection of staff and customers.
  • If you have lost your passport, please get in touch with your embassy. This of course does not apply if you held a German travel document issued to refugees, stateless persons or foreign nationals. In such cases please get in touch with the relevant LEA department responsible for you.
  • If your embassy requires confirmation of your right of residency in Germany or if you already have a new passport, once again please get in touch with the relevant LEA department responsible for you.
  • In the event of passport theft, please also include a copy of your police report of the theft in your submission to LEA.
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General questions about the target groups for the online forms

Owing to the pandemic outbreak of the coronavirus and to protect against the risk of infection we have been forced to greatly reduce our public-facing services and appointments system considerably.

Consequently it is not currently possible to maintain face-to-face appointments which have been booked in advance. To spare you the need to appear in person whilst still issuing you with a certificate and ensuring we can contact you and invite you to attend an appointment as soon as possible, we have set up an online procedure for submitting applications.

This option is designed exclusively for the following groups of people:

Category 1:
You have an appointment at the Berlin Immigration Office or your temporary residency permit (see enumeration above) or provisional residence document (Fiktionsbescheinigung) expires within the next six weeks?
In this context temporary residency permits are not visitor visas (so-called Schengen visas) but solely national visas for longer stays in Germany (so-called D-visas), the residency permit, the Blue Card, the ICT Card and the Mobile ICT Card.

Then please complete this online form.

Category 2:
You are in possession of a certificate confirming permission to remain pending an asylum decision, have temporary suspension of deportation status, a border crossing certificate, a so-called L4048 certificate under Section 84(2) of the German Residency Act, or a certificate on the confiscation of a passport?

Then please complete this online form.

Important notes:
  • Please do only use the online form to submit an application if you possess one of the aforementioned documents and are resident in Berlin, and please carefully read our FAQs before submitting your form.
  • The FAQs also provide information regarding other services offered to you by Berlin Immigration Office.
  • Did you enter Germany on a so-called Schengen visa for visiting or business purposes (a so-called Type C tourist visa, Section 6 (1 No 1) Residency Act) and currently cannot leave the country? Then please consult the relevant section of our FAQs
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  • It currently remains unclear exactly when normal service can resume at Berlin Immigration Office.
  • To secure your residency rights, we therefore expressly recommend making use of the online procedure on our website. Since we will gradually be resuming normal service, we will soon be issuing appointments to everyone registered online, and this will spare you a longer wait at our offices.
  • The certificate displayed to you on screen after completing the online form serves as confirmation of your application and extends the validity of your temporary residence document up to the date of your appointment in our offices. The same applies for all stipulations in conjunction with this document, in particular with regard to the nature and scope of the permitted economic activity.
  • We strongly recommend that you print out the confirmation and save a digital copy. Therefore you are advised to register using a device with a printer connection. Alternatively, you can also save the document as a PDF on your Smartphone. You will not receive a separate email confirmation of your application to Berlin Immigration Office.
  • Please bear in mind with regard to travel abroad that re-entry into Germany is only allowed if you are in possession of a valid residence permit, but not with the print-out of your application confirmation.
  • Should your employer/ landlord/ another authority decline to recognise your continued lawful residence in Germany in spite of the documented confirmation of your online application, please refer them to the up-to-date information on our website. Please also consult our website yourself at regular intervals. Here we will keep you informed about the resumption of normal service as well as about any other current developments.
  • If you’re covered by category 1, please enter yourself in this online form.
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  • It currently remains unclear exactly when normal service can resume at Berlin Immigration Office.
  • The possibility to apply online for a certificate regarding the extension of your residency status enables you to resolve the necessary matters with regard to your residency status. We will examine your request in good time. Following the examination we will send you any certificate regarding the extension of your residency status by email
  • Should your employer/ landlord/ another authority have any questions about our online procedure, please refer them to the up-to-date information on our website. Please also consult our website yourself at regular intervals. Here we will keep you informed about the resumption of normal service as well as about any other current developments.
    If you’re covered by category 2, please enter yourself in this this online form.
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  • We kindly ask for your patience. Processing your enquiry may take a while. We will send you an appointment or otherwise get in touch with you.
  • You will not receive a separate confirmation (e.g. by email) from Berlin Immigration Office regarding the submission of your application.
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  • No, please do not use the online registration option.
  • Should you have any questions about your right to residency, please come to Berlin Immigration Office once normal service has resumed. We kindly ask for your understanding that owing to the pandemic outbreak of the coronavirus we are currently unable to offer a service for you.
  • But please rest assured that in principle you are entitled by law to the right of free movement in Germany. Consequently you can take up any employment whatsoever.
  • Should your employer/ landlord/ another authority have any questions about our online procedure, please refer them to the up-to-date information on our website. Please also consult our website yourself at regular intervals. Here we will keep you informed about the resumption of normal service as well as about any other current developments.
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  • No, please do not use the online registration option.
  • Should you have any questions about your right to residency, please come to Berlin Immigration Office once normal service has resumed. We kindly ask for your understanding that owing to the pandemic outbreak of the coronavirus we are currently unable to offer a service for you.
  • But please rest assured that in principle you are entitled by law to the right of free movement in Germany. Consequently you can take up any employment whatsoever.
  • Should your employer/ landlord/ another authority have any questions about our online procedure, please refer them to the up-to-date information on our website. Please also consult our website yourself at regular intervals. Here we will keep you informed about the resumption of normal service as well as about any other current developments.
  • For family members not in possession of a residence card, who e.g. wish to document their right to employment, there is an option to submit an application. Please submit this application for a residency card by email or post as far as possible using the corresponding application form. In order to process the application we will require the birth and marriage certificates, the job contract in the event of employment, and also copies of the passports of both partners or the parents. Within the framework of our current capacity we will examine these applications, and you will be issued with a certificate in accordance with Section 5(1) and (2) of the Free Movement Act (FreizüG/EU).
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Residency in Berlin?

  • The online-forms are only designed for foreign nationals and their family members who are already living in Berlin.
  • If you do not live in Berlin, please consult your local Foreign Nationals Office in your place of residency.
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  • Please get in touch with the German embassy or consulate in the region where you currently find yourself and apply there for a re-entry visa for your intended purpose. For this you will require your passport and your existing residency permit.
  • You can also get in touch with our department B 4 by email. We will process your request as quickly as possible and where appropriate send a preliminary approval confirmation to the responsible mission abroad. Since you are abroad, the responsibility for your matter lies with the German representations abroad (Section 71(2) Residency Act).
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  • Please get in touch with the German embassy or consulate in the region where you currently find yourself. These authorities will then make contact with us.
  • Please do not get in touch directly with us at Berlin Immigration Office. We can only process your enquiry if you are in Germany. Since you are abroad, the responsibility for your matter lies with the German representations abroad (Section 71(2) Residency Act).
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  • On 24th March 2020 Berlin Immigration Office issued a general decree which was extended on 19th May 2020. This stipulates that certain people will be granted an extended period of absence prior to re-entry without the need to undertake anything.
  • If you left Germany between 18.09.2019 and 17.03.2020 at the latest and have not yet returned to the federal territory, the 6-month period will be extended until 30.09.2020. This means that your temporary or permanent residence permit will not expire in these cases even if you stay abroad for more than 6 months.
  • Please bear in mind that this rule only applies if your temporary residency permit does not expire between 18th March 2020 and 30th September 2020.
  • The rule does not apply if your temporary or permanent residency permit expired prior to 18th March 2020 owing to a stay outside the country in excess of six months.
  • In both these scenarios you would please need to get in touch with the German embassy or consulate in the region where you currently find yourself and apply there for a re-entry visa for your intended purpose. For this you will require your passport and your existing residency permit. In addition you can get in touch with our department B 4 by email. We will process your request as quickly as possible and where appropriate send a preliminary approval confirmation to the responsible mission abroad.
  • You can find a list of German representations abroad at the following link: https://www.auswaertiges-amt.de/de/ReiseUndSicherheit/deutsche-auslandsvertretungen
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  • If you have more than one place of residency in Germany, the responsibility Foreign Nationals Office will be the one in your primary place of residency.
  • Please do not complete the online form if you are only registered in Berlin with your secondary place of residence. Please report instead to your local Foreign Nationals Office in your primary place of residency.
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  • If you are not registered as resident in Germany, but simply commute to Germany for work from another EU member state or a third country, then this online form is not for you either.
  • Please consult the responsible authority in your place of residence.
  • Please bear in mind, that owing to the pandemic outbreak of coronavirus there may be sudden border closures and entry bans.
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After legal entry with a Schengen visa or without a visa

  • Please do not come to LEA unless you have an appointment.
  • Whether or not you will have to self-isolate on arrival depends on a number of factors. In general, travellers coming to Berlin from abroad who have stayed in a risk area at any point during the 14 days prior to entry are required to go directly to their homes or accommodation and self-isolate there for 14 days after arrival. This also applies to anyone who has come to Berlin from abroad via another German federal state (Land).
  • A risk area is a state or region outside Germany for which a heightened risk of infection with COVID-19 exists at the moment of entry into Germany. The designation of risk areas is made by the Federal Health Ministry, the Foreign Ministry and the Federal Interior Ministry and published by the Robert Koch Institute. Please consult the website of the Robert Koch Institute for more information.
  • Travellers who are required to self-isolate on arrival must report to their local health office (Gesundheitsamt). In such cases you are not permitted to receive visits from anyone who does not themselves live in your accommodation. There are further exemptions from the quarantine rule for people who are required to enter and leave Germany for occupational reasons, for example airline staff. You can consult the full list of exemptions in Part 3 (Quarantine measures), Section 9 of the Berlin state COVID-19 Regulation. It is a regulatory offence to infringe the quarantine requirement, which is subject to a financial penalty of up to €25,000.
  • If your visa is expiring, please register using our online link here. If you entered Germany without a visa, you can submit an application for a residency permit by email or post using the appropriate application form. Please bear in mind that we cannot process your application unless you use this form.
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  • The Federal Interior Ministry passed a regulation on 18th June 2020 which applies for both tourist visas and multi-year multi-entry visas. It provides that the stay of certain persons remains lawful until 30th September 2020 even if their Schengen visa has expired. Such individuals do not need to take any action.
  • Were you in Germany on 17th March 2020 on a valid Schengen visa, and were you also here on 30th June 2020? If so, then your stay remains lawful until 30th September 2020. You do not need to make an appointment at Berlin Immigration Office, and nor do you require a certificate from us.
  • Did you travel to Germany between 17th March 2020 and 29th June 2020 on a valid Schengen visa, and were you also here on 30th June 2020? If so, then the same applies. Your stay remains lawful until 30th September 2020. You do not need to make an appointment at Berlin Immigration Office, and nor do you require a certificate from us.
  • If your Schengen visa entitles you to engage in economic activity, then you may do so until 30th September within the scope permitted.
  • Do you wish to travel inside the Schengen Area before 30th September 2020? If your Schengen visa has expired then you are not entitled to travel within the Schengen Area.
  • Do you wish to return to your home country by 30th September 2020 via a transit airport in Germany? In the period until 30th September you are exempt from the requirement of a residency permit for entering Germany and subsequently staying here for up to three days if you were permitted to stay in another Schengen state and you are transiting Germany to reach another state which allows you to enter. Your intention to leave Germany should be demonstrated by supplying appropriate documentation.
  • Do you wish to leave Germany via a transit airport to return to your home state by 30th September 2020? To the best of our knowledge, leaving Germany via a transit airport outside Germany remains possible in principle. However, at the same time this cannot be guaranteed. Nor can it be guaranteed that transiting on an expired Schengen visa will not be subject to criminal penalties.
  • We therefore recommend that when leaving Germany you return directly to your home state or else contact your airline operator for further information.
  • Please stay in regular contact with your embassy or consulate here in Germany to ascertain whether a departure is possible with a national charter or other repatriation measure. Many airlines have resumed their regular schedules. Please consult the airlines directly for more information about possible travel options to your home country.
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  • Yes. The EU issued a Notification on this on 16th March 2020. It applies to all persons with the right of residency in a Schengen state. You are permitted to return there if that is your place of residency.
  • The following 26 states are part of the Schengen Area: Germany, Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxemburg, Malta, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Sweden, Switzerland, Slovakia, Slovenia and Spain.
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  • No, please do not seek an appointment at this time. We ask for your understanding that owing to the pandemic outbreak of the coronavirus we have been forced to reduce our services considerably in order to protect both customers and staff. We therefore ask that you only arrange an appointment with us once normal service has resumed. Please stay up to date by regularly checking our website.
  • Should you wish to apply for a residency permit, you may do so by email or letter using the application form. Please bear in mind that your application cannot be processed without this form.
  • If your application is granted, you will receive notification from us in writing.
  • We kindly ask for your understanding that, owing to the reduced capacity, applications cannot be processed immediately. We therefore kindly ask for your patience.
  • If you are only in Germany for tourist or business purposes or do not wish to submit an application for a permit and if you require assistance in leaving the country, please get in touch with your embassy.
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  • As a tourist you can stay in Germany for up to 90 days in a 180-day period without the need for a visa. Therefore you need only ensure that you leave Germany in time during the stipulated period.
  • Therefore you do not need to obtain any further residency documents.
  • Should you wish to stay in Germany in the longer term, you will need to submit a corresponding application. For this you do not need to appear in person at our offices, and you can instead submit an application by email or post using this form.
  • Please bear in mind that we cannot process your application without this form. We will endeavour to contact you as soon as possible by email or letter. If your application is granted, we will inform you of this decision in writing.
  • We kindly ask for your understanding that owing to the reduction in capacity we will not be able to process applications for the time being, and we therefore ask for your patience.
  • We ask for your understanding that we have been forced to reduce our services considerably in order to protect both customers and staff. We therefore ask that you only arrange a follow-up appointment with us once normal service has resumed. Please stay up to date by regularly checking our website.
  • If you are only in Germany for tourist or business purposes or do not wish to submit an application for a permit and if you require assistance in leaving the country, please get in touch with your embassy.
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  • As a tourist you can stay in Germany for up to 90 days in a 180-day period without the need for a visa. Therefore you need only ensure that you leave Germany in time during the stipulated period.
  • Many airlines have resumed their regular schedules. Please consult the airlines directly or your embassy for more information about possible travel options to your home country.
  • We ask that you leave Germany by the stipulated time, or that you arrange an appointment with us once normal service has resumed. Please stay up to date by regularly checking our Website.
  • According to the Federal Interior Ministry, the European Commission has recommended forgoing the imposition of sanctions on travellers from third countries who have been unable to leave in time owing to the travel restrictions in place. Exceeding the admissible period for a stay owing to these travel restrictions shall not be a factor in the consideration of future visa applications.
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Employment or vocational training

  • If your residency permit remains valid, send us an email at B1@lea.berlin.de (surnames A-K) or B2@lea.berlin.de (L-Z), enclosing the required documents.
  • If your permit expires in the next six weeks, please register using the online procedure under category 1 or 2. Also send us the necessary documents with regard to change of employer by email to B1@lea.berlin.de (surnames A-K) or B2@lea.berlin.de (L-Z). Please refer in your correspondence to your registration via the online procedure.
  • As soon as we receive your application, we will submit the necessary request to the Federal Employment Agency within the limits of our capacity. Requests from doctors and nursing professionals will take priority in our processing.
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  • With your residency permit for study purposes you can work for a total of 120 years or 240 half-days in a calendar year.
  • As long as your residency permit remains valid, you can commence employment now. This applies even if you have already completed your studies.
    To give an example, even if you’ve been working full time five days a week since 1st January 2020, under this permit you could still continue to work full-time until 30th June 2020. If you only commence economic activity or work part-time later, the timeframes are shifted accordingly. If for example you commence a five-day working week on 1st April 2020, you can undertake any economic activity under your student residency permit until 30th September 2020.
  • To ensure that you can continue to undertake economic activity thereafter, please submit an application for a residency permit for the purpose of work. Please send us an email at B1@lea.berlin.de (surnames A-K) or B2@lea.berlin.de (L-Z), enclosing the required documents. Once normal service has resumed we will issue a residency permit for the purpose of work as long as you meet the criteria.
  • If your student permit expires in the next six weeks, please register using the online procedure under category 1. With this registration you ensure that your residency remains lawful pending a decision by Berlin Immigration Office. This also ensures that you remain entitled to work within the previously permissible scope, i.e. 120 days or 240 half-days in a calendar year.
  • Please also submit an application for a residency permit for the purpose of economic activity To this end you do not need to come to our office in person, since you can submit your application by email or post using this application form. Please bear in mind that we cannot process your application without this form. We will endeavour to get in touch with you by email or letter as soon as possible. If your application is approved, we will inform you of our decision in writing.
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  • No. It is true that your residency permit may be terminated by Berlin Immigration Office if one of the fundamental criteria for obtaining it is no longer met (the so-called curtailing of validity under Section 7(2)2 of the Residency Act). However, Berlin Immigration Office will not apply this provision in your case with effect until 30th September 2020.
  • Please bear in mind that, when seeking a formal extension of your EU Blue Card after the Coronavirus pandemic has ended, you will once again be required to prove that you meet the statutory requirements and thus also the stipulated salary thresholds.
  • If your EU Blue Card is due to expire within the next six weeks, please complete our online form.
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  • No. On 27th March 2020 Berlin Immigration Office issued a General Decree which was extended on 19th May 2020. If your employment as an au-pair ended in connection with a termination or is terminated between 18th March 2020 and 30th September 2020, your residency permit will not become invalid.
  • This applies in spite of the conditional stipulation in your residency permit (“becomes invalid upon conclusion of the au-pair engagement”), provided that for the entire period of the activity Berlin Immigration Office remains the Foreigners Authority responsible for your residency status (i.e. provided you retain your primary place of residency in Berlin and are registered as living here). In that case you do not need to take any action, but please do get in touch with us again when our normal service has resumed.
  • If your residency permit is due to expire within the next six weeks, please complete our online form.
  • If you genuinely cannot leave Germany, there is no reason why you cannot continue to live with your au-pair family as a guest. Should you require assistance leaving, please get in touch with your embassy.
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  • On 3rd April 2020 Berlin Immigration Office issued a General Decree which was extended on 19th May 2020. Point 1 of the decree contains a provision on the supplementary stipulation in your residency permit. If you successfully complete your vocational training or your training was terminated, your residency permit will not expire.
  • Does your temporary residency permit expire? Then please complete this online form.
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  • On 3rd April 2020 Berlin Immigration Office issued a General Decree which was extended on 19th May 2020. Point 2 of the decree contains a provision on the supplementary stipulation in your residency permit. If you successfully complete your training or your training was terminated, your residency permit will not expire.
  • Does your temporary residency permit expire? Then please complete this online form.
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  • On 3rd April 2020 Berlin Immigration Office issued a General Decree which was extended on 19th May 2020. Point 3 of the decree contains a provision on the supplementary stipulation in your residency permit. If your employment was terminated, your residency permit will not expire.
  • Does your temporary residency permit expire? Then please complete this online form.
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  • No. Where tolerated status for the purpose of employment (Beschäftigungsduldung, Section 60d Residency Act) is concerned, this status is to be revoked if the criteria for granting it are no longer met (Section 60d(3) sentence 1 Residency Act). However, short interruptions in employment which is subject to social insurance contributions and in the securement of self-subsistence through no fault of your own are discounted (Section 60d(1) sentence 1 nos 3 and 4 in conjunction with Section 60d(2) sentence 2 Residency Act).
  • Between 18th March 2020 and 30th September 2020 Berlin Immigration Office will discount Section 60d cases where employment is terminated and self-subsistence is not secured through no fault of your own. Termination of employment through no fault of your own occurs where your employer terminates your employment during this time period.
  • The above does not however apply if you terminated your employment voluntarily. In that case your tolerated status will be revoked. Until your status has been revoked you remain with tolerated status for the purpose of employment (Beschäftigungsduldung).
  • You therefore do not need to register using our online form.
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  • On 3rd April 2020 Berlin Immigration Office issued a General Decree which was extended on 19th May 2020. Point 4 of the decree contains a provision on the supplementary stipulation in your residency permit. If your residency permit is valid until a date between 18th March 2020 and 30th September 2020 and you register using the following online form, then it will not expire.
  • Does your temporary residency permit expire? Then please complete this online form.
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  • If your residency permit or your national visa (“D-Visa”, e.g. a “Van der Elst” or Working Holiday visa) expires soon, please register using one of our online forms. In this way you ensure that your residency is deemed to be permitted pending a decision by Berlin Immigration Office.
  • Does your temporary residency permit or national visa (“D-Visa”) expire? Then please complete this online form.
  • With regard to the entitlement to engage in economic activity the following applies: If you are continuing your employment with the same employer and you have registered using the online form, this employment will remain permitted in light of the current situation. This applies even if your employment was originally for a fixed term only. This permit applies provisionally until 30 September 2020.
  • If you wish or have to commence employment with a new employer and can present a new job contract, please get in touch with the office department responsible for your case by email. We will then assess whether a new work permit can be issued to you on this basis.
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  • Please do not contact us unless requested to do so. Please complete our online form. If your residency permit is valid and you register using our online form, then it will not expire.
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  • Please do not contact us unless requested to do so. Please complete our online form. We will favourably consider the possibility of extending your tolerated status.
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Draw of public social benefits

  • No. On 24th March 2020 and 27th March 2020 Berlin Immigration Office issued two General Decrees which were extended on 19th May 2020. These state that your residency permit does not become invalid if, between 18th March 2020 and 30th September 2020, you draw short-term work benefits, SGB II (Hartz IV), SGB XII (social assistance) or AsylbLG (Asylum Seeker Benefits Act) benefits.
  • This applies in spite of the conditional stipulation in your residency permit, provided that for the entire period when you draw these benefits Berlin Immigration Office remains the Foreigners Authority responsible for your residency status (i.e. provided you retain your primary place of residency in Berlin and are registered as living here). In that case you do not need to take any action.
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  • No. It is true that your residency permit may be terminated by Berlin Immigration Office if one of the fundamental criteria for obtaining it is no longer met (the so-called curtailing of validity under Section 7(2)2 of the Residency Act). However, Berlin Immigration Office will not apply this provision with effect until 30th September 2020 with regard to the resort to such benefits.
  • Please bear in mind that, when seeking a formal extension of your residency permit after the Coronavirus pandemic has ended, you will once again be required to prove that you can secure your subsistence yourself without recourse to supplementary welfare benefits.
  • If your residency permit is due to expire within the next six weeks, please complete our online form.
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Further questions

  • If a father or mother has exclusive custody and
    • holds a residency permit issued by Berlin Immigration Office at the time of the child’s birth, and
    • is registered as resident in Berlin together with the child, and
    • the child meets the passport requirements (i.e. has their own passport or is entered on yours), then please make an appointment at Service-Portal Berlin.
  • This is also possible where custody is shared,
    • provided that both parents hold a residency permit issued by Berlin Immigration Office at the time of the child’s birth and
    • the child meets the passport requirements (i.e. has their own passport or is entered on one of the parent’s passports).
  • In the case of parents with shared custody where only one parent has a residency permit:
    • Please apply for a residency permit. To this end you do not need to come to our office in person, since you can submit your application by email or post using our application form. Please bear in mind that we cannot process your application without this form.
    • We will endeavour to get in touch with you by email or letter as soon as possible. If your application is approved, we will inform you of our decision in writing.
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Yes, Berlin Immigration Office continues to send out official notifications. This will also apply in the event of your lawyer being taken ill in connection with the Coronavirus.

  • Section 53(1) of the Code for Lawyers and Solicitors (BRAO) stipulates that a lawyer or solicitor must make provision for a representative if they are prevented from exercising their profession for more than a week or if they will or are required to stay away from their offices for longer than a week.
  • The issuing and servicing of official notifications therefore continues to remain possible, even in the event of a lawyer falling ill in connection with the Coronavirus.
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  • The Federal Government decided on 1 July 2020 to broadly implement the “Recommendations of the Council of the European Union on the temporary restriction of non-essential travel into the EU and the possible lifting of such restriction”.
  • Since 2 July extended possibilities for entry into Germany apply, and once again visas are being issued by German representations abroad in larger numbers where the situation on the ground allows it.
  • With regard to entry from certain states, entry restrictions have been lifted in their entirety.
  • You can find the current “positive list” of such states on the website of the Federal Interior Ministry at: here
  • Are you staying in a state which is not on the positive list? In that case, entry and where relevant the prior issuance of a visa is only possible if you have an important reason.
  • At the moment for instance that covers skilled workers with particular qualifications or from particular sectors whose employment is necessary from an economic perspective and whose work cannot be postponed or performed from abroad. It also covers students at German higher education institutions whose studies cannot be conducted entirely from abroad. It also covers family reunification.
  • Up to date information on important reasons can be found on the Federal Interior Ministry homepage: here and on the homepage of the Federal Police: here
  • Foreign-national skilled workers and highly qualified employees who are allowed to enter without a visa for long-term stays under Section 41(1) of the Residency Regulation (AufenthV), but who come from a state which is not on the “positive list”, may facilitate their travel by arranging to have the plausibility and urgency of any forthcoming entry confirmed by the German representation in their place of residency (consular certificate). In such cases we however recommend, instead of the consular certificate, applying for a skilled worker visa. This will enable you to commence your employment immediately after entering Germany.
  • Please contact the German representation in your current place of residency. You can find a list of German embassies and consulates abroad on the website of the German Federal Foreign Office.
  • Important: The quarantine rules in the German federal states (Länder) for travellers entering from countries listed as risk areas by the Robert Koch Institute continue to apply irrespective of the entry rules.
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Data protection

  • The data requested for our online form will be processed in compliance with the General Data Protection Regulation.
  • As soon as normal service is resumed and we invite you to attend an appointment or otherwise resolve your application, we will immediately delete all data.
  • If you have any questions concerning this you can contact Berlin Immigration Office’s data protection commissioner, Mr Daum, at Daum@labo.berlin.de.
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Do you have another question?

We have set up a telephone hotline for questions that are not already answered in our FAQ. This can be reached as follows:

From Monday to Thursday between 9:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. and Friday between 9:00 a.m. and 12:00 a.m. on telephone numbers 90269-4407 and 90269-4408.

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