FAQ on handling and processing applications during the corona pandemic

Berlin Immigration Office General Decrees

  • With another General decree, issued on 26 th August 2020, the validity period of these General decrees (initially limited to 17th June 2020 and then extended to 30th September 2020) was extended to 31st December 2020.
  • 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 31st December 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, 19th May 2020 and 26th August and thus publicly announced in accordance with Section 4(4) of the Administrative Procedures Act (VwVfG).

Services

  • Yes, Berlin Immigration Office is open. From 7th September onwards Berlin Immigration Office will re-open for regular customer appointments, following a period in which our service had to be largely moved to online and written procedures because of Covid-19 and for reasons of protection against infection. Our opening hours are:
    • At our office at Friedrich-Krause-Ufer: Mondays and Tuesdays 7am-2pm; Thursdays 9am-5pm; otherwise by appointment only.
    • At our office at Keplerstrasse: Thursdays 9am-5pm; otherwise by appointment only.
  • Owing to the pandemic outbreak of Covid-19 we are implementing the following hygiene measures for your benefit:
    • entry to the building permitted only if wearing a mouth-nose covering
    • non-contact temperature measurement taken on arrival
      We ask for your understanding with regard to these measures.
  • In the event of an emergency you can reach Berlin Immigration Office on Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays between 9am and 3pm, and on Wednesdays and Fridays between 9am and 12pm by calling 90269-4407 or 90269-4408.
  • Should you urgently need to travel, please send an email including your travel ticket and stating the reason for your travel to the office unit responsible for you. We will then issue you with an appointment in time.
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  • No, since 1 October 2020 the online registration system is no longer available.
    Depending on which service you require, you can arrange an appointment, attend the office as a walk-in customer, or submit a written application.
    You can find further information in the following FAQs.
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  • From 30th September 2020 you can once again book an appointment for certain residency titles and services.
  • You can find further information about arranging an appointment “here:./einwanderung/en/services/appointments/
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  • No, please do not book an appointment. Please refrain from making written or phone enquiries about your matter, since this will constrain our capacities and prolong processing times.
  • Please do not come to Berlin Immigration Office in person without an appointment either.
  • Please have a little patience. We will process your enquiry and get in touch with you as soon as possible.
  • Please do not worry, even if your appointment can only take place in a few weeks’ time. The certificate displayed on your screen when you completed the online form serves as proof of your application and extends the validity of your temporary residency document until your appointment at Berlin Immigration Office. This also applies to all supplementary entries on the document, in particular concerning the scope and nature of admissible employment.
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In this case it is unfortunately not possible to give you an appointment. Please come to Berlin Immigration Office (location Friedrich-Krause-Ufer) from 7th September 2020 onwards during our regular opening hours (Mondays and Tuesdays 7am-2pm; Thursdays 9am-5pm).

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  • No, please do not turn up at our offices in person without an appointment. Please refrain from making written or phone enquiries about your matter, since this will constrain our capacities and prolong processing times.
  • We ask for a little patience. We will process your enquiry as soon as possible and send you a certificate confirming the extension of your asylum-seeker permit (Aufenthaltsgestattung).
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  • In this case it is unfortunately not possible to give you an appointment. Please come to Berlin Immigration Office (location Friedrich-Krause-Ufer) from 7th September 2020 onwards during our regular opening hours (Mondays and Tuesdays 7am-2pm; Thursdays 9am-5pm).
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  • No, please do not turn up at our offices in person without an appointment. Please refrain from making written or phone enquiries about your matter, since this will constrain our capacities and prolong processing times.
  • We ask for a little patience. We will process your enquiry as soon as possible and send you a certificate confirming the extension of your document.
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  • Unfortunately this is not possible. For reasons of protection against infection our primary focus remains on service by appointment.
  • In the event of an emergency, you can reach Berlin Immigration Office by telephone on Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays 9am-3pm, and on Wednesdays and Fridays 9am-12pm on 90269-4407 or 90269-4408.
  • Should you urgently need to travel, please send an email including your travel ticket and stating the reason for your travel to the office unit responsible for you. We will then issue you with an appointment in time.
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  • No, please do not seek unasked an appointment.
  • 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.
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  • No, please do not turn up at our offices in person without an appointment.
  • Provided you remain in possession of both your old and your new passport, entry and exit should continue to be possible without difficulty.
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  • No, please do not turn up at our offices in person without an appointment.
  • 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 book an appointment.
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  • No, please do not turn up at our offices in person without an appointment. 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. We will consider your request and get in touch with you. If you possess an electronic residency permit (a plastic eAT card), you can use it to prove your lawful residency.
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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 accepting a temporary official entry or stamp issued by your embassy or consulate in your expired passport or proof of a blanket extension til 31st December 2020.
  • The general practice of extending the validity of expired documents will not continue beyond 31st December 2020. Extensions will not be accepted beyond this time. Please therefore ensure that you obtain a new passport in good time and that you bear these rules in mind when making travel plans, in particular over the festive period. With effect from 1st January 2021 Berlin Immigration Office will not issue travel documents.
  • Please do not worry, even if your appointment can only take place in a few weeks’ time. By booking an appointment the validity of your temporary residence document is extended until the date of your appointment at Berlin Immigration Office. This also applies to all supplementary entries on the document, in particular concerning the scope and nature of admissible employment.
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  • Please do not come to us unless you have an appointment.
  • 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 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 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.
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  • No, this is not possible.
  • 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 any current developments.
  • If you have any questions about your right of residency, please send an email to the unit responsible for your case (e5@lea.berlin.de). We will examine your enquiry and get in touch with you.
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  • No, this is not possible.
  • 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.
  • 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) or you will be sent an appointment.
  • If you are a family member of a British national, please register here.
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Residency in Berlin?

  • That’s right, the Berlin Immigration Office is only responsible for foreign nationals and their family members who already live in Berlin. It does not suffice for you to work 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 contact Section B 4 by e-mail. We will process your request as quickly as possible and, if necessary, send the responsible diplomatic mission either a preliminary approval or a fictional certificate (Fiktionsbescheinigung). Please note that this only applies to departures by June 16, 2020.
  • 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.
  • You can also contact Section B 4 by e-mail. We will process your request as quickly as possible and, if necessary, send the responsible diplomatic mission either a preliminary approval or a fictional certificate (Fiktionsbescheinigung). Please note that this only applies to departures by June 16, 2020.
  • 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 and on 25th August 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 31.12.2020. 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 31st December 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.
  • Since you are abroad, the responsibility for your matter lies with the German representations abroad (Section 71(2) Residency Act).
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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.
  • 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 you can not book an appointment at Berlin Immigration Office or come to our offices 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 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 or you entered Germany without a visa, please book an appointment for a time after the end of your period of quarantine.
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  • The Federal Interior Ministry passed a regulation on 18th June 2020 which applied for both tourist visas and multi-year multi-entry visas. It provided that the stay of certain persons remained lawful until 30th September 2020 even if their Schengen visa has expired. Such individuals did not need to take any action.
  • Have you been in Germany on 17th March 2020 on a valid Schengen visa, and have you also been here on 30th June 2020? If so, then your stay remained lawful until 30th September 2020. You did not need to make an appointment at Berlin Immigration Office, and nor did 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 have you also been here on 30th June 2020? If so, then the same applied. Your stay remained lawful until 30th September 2020. You did not need to make an appointment at Berlin Immigration Office, and nor did you require a certificate from us.
  • If your Schengen visa entitled you to engage in economic activity, you could continue to work to the same extent until September 30, 2020.
  • In a letter dated 16th September 2020 the Federal Interior Ministry (BMI) gave notification that the regulation will not be extended. The BMI said the basic assumption was that those affected would be able to return to their home countries by the end of September 2020. All in all the options for international travel have improved considerably. According to the available information there is no longer an entry ban in place in any country with regard to its own citizens. There is thus no basis for a further extension of the regulation.
  • Schengen visa holders must therefore have left Germany by 30th September 2020. Please consult your embassy or consulate in Germany, or commercial airlines directly, for more information about options for travel back to your home state.
  • We would like to point out that applications for residency permits by Schengen visa holders do not have any legal effect with regard to lawfulness of presence.
  • 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 via a transit airport in Germany? If so, you will need to apply for a visa at the embassy or consulate responsible for the respective member state.
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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 turn up at our offices in person without an appointment. Please book an appointment.
  • 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 or commercial airlines directly. The basic assumption is that it is possible to return to your home country at any time. All in all the options for international travel have improved considerably. According to the available information there is no longer an entry ban in place in any country with regard to its own citizens.
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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.
  • The basic assumption is that it is possible to return to your home country at any time. All in all the options for international travel have improved considerably. According to the available information there is no longer an entry ban in place in any country with regard to its own citizens. Please consult your embassy or consulate in Germany, or commercial airlines directly, for more information about options for travel back to your home state.
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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.
  • The basic assumption is that it is possible to return to your home country at any time. All in all the options for international travel have improved considerably. According to the available information there is no longer an entry ban in place in any country with regard to its own citizens. Please consult your embassy or consulate in Germany, or commercial airlines directly, for more information about options for travel back to your home state.
  • Therefore, we ask that you leave Germany by the stipulated time.
  • Travellers who entered Germany without a visa before 17th March 2020, who have remained here since 15th June 2020 and who now wish to leave voluntarily, may do so without needing to attend a further appointment at Berlin Immigration Office.
  • 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.
  • Should you desire a document confirming your stay to present to the German Federal Police, you may request an extension to your existing period of stay from the Berlin Immigration Office unit responsible for your nationality.
    A decision regarding your application prior to you departure is not required and will not be taken. A print-out of your application will suffice for the German Federal Police to recognise your stay as lawful (under Section 81 Paragraph 3 of the Residency Act).
    Please provide complete personal information in your application, along with your date of entry and voluntary departure. A template would read like this: “I have been lawfully in Germany as a tourist without a visa since 16th March 2020 and have so far been unable to leave owing to the travel restrictions related to the Covid-19 pandemic. I intend to leave voluntarily on (date of departure) and hereby apply for a residency status pending departure”.
    Please print out the application for presentation to the German Federal Police.
  • For travellers who entered after 16th June 2020, and thus once the Schengen borders were reopened, this option is not available. In such cases general immigration rules apply.
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Employment or vocational training

  • Have you been working in Germany for at least two years whilst holding a residency title which entitles you to work? Or have you resided in Germany for at least three years with such a residency title?
    Then in general you can switch jobs with prior authorisation. Please consult our website for the precise conditions governing a change of employer as well as the necessary documentation.
  • You require an amendment to the supplementary entry on employment in your residency permit, and you meet the relevant conditions? Then please book an appointment at Berlin Immigration Office.
    Please bring all necessary documentation with you to your appointment.
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  • The requirements for a residence permit for the purpose of employment and the required documents can be found here
  • If you meet the requirements, please book an appointment
  • With regard to the permission to work as part of a residence permit for the purpose of study we wish to point out the following:
    • With your residency permit for study purposes you can work for a total of 120 years or 240 half-days in a calendar year.
    • Provided your residency title for study purposes is still valid, you may be able to undertake any form of employment with immediate effect. For example, if you began working a five-day week on 1st April 2020, you can undertake any form of employment on your student residency permit until 30th September 2020. If you only commenced work at a later date or are only working part-time, the timeframes are shifted accordingly. If for example you commenced a five-day working week on 1st July 2020, you can undertake any economic activity under your student residency permit until 31st December 2020.
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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 31st December 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.
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  • No. On 27th March 2020 Berlin Immigration Office issued a General Decree which was extended on 19th May 2020 and on 25th August 2020. If your employment as an au-pair ended in connection with a termination or is terminated between 18th March 2020 and 31st December 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 book an appointment.
  • 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 and on 25th August 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 until 31st December 2020, your residency permit will not expire.
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  • On 3rd April 2020 Berlin Immigration Office issued a General Decree which was extended on 19th May 2020 and on 25th August 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 until 31st December 2020, your residency permit will not expire.
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  • On 3rd April 2020 Berlin Immigration Office issued a General Decree which was extended on 19th May 2020 and on 25th August 2020. Point 3 of the decree contains a provision on the supplementary stipulation in your residency permit. If your employment was terminated until 31st December 2020, your residency permit will not expire.
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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 31st December 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).
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  • On 3rd April 2020 Berlin Immigration Office issued a General Decree which was extended on 19th May 2020 and on 25th August 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 31st December 2020 and you have registered using the online form on our website or booked an appointment, then it will not expire.
  • Please do not worry, even if your appointment can only take place in a few weeks’ time. By booking an appointment the validity of your temporary residence document is extended until the date of your appointment at Berlin Immigration Office. This also applies to all supplementary entries on the document, in particular concerning the scope and nature of admissible employment.
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  • If your residency permit or your national D-visa (e.g. “Van-der-Elst” or working holiday visa) expires soon, please book an appointment. In this way you ensure that your residency is deemed to be permitted pending a decision by Berlin Immigration Office.
  • 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.
  • If you wish or have to commence employment with a new employer and can present a new job contract, please book an appointment. We will then assess whether a new work permit can be issued to you on this basis.
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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 and on 25th August 2020. These state that your residency permit does not become invalid if, between 18th March 2020 and 31st December 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 31st December 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.
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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).
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  • 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.
  • On the website of the Federal Interior Ministry you can find the up-to-date positive list of states in the section on travel restrictions/ border controls, under point 1: ‘Welche Reisebeschränkungen gibt es im außereuropäischen Luft- und Seeverkehr?” (What travel restrictions / border controls apply for travel by air or sea from outside Europe?)
  • 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 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 relating to the right of residence, e.g. visa procedures, employment, studies, family reunification or asylum procedures, that are not already answered in our FAQ. This can be reached as follows:
    On Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays between 9:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m., and on Wednesdays and Fridays between 9:00 a.m. and 12:00 p.m. on telephone numbers 90269-4407 and 90269-4408.
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