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Residence permit for scientific staff and researchers

Granting and extension of a residence permit for the purpose of research

Directive (EU) 2016/801 states that a residence permit for the purpose of research will be granted if a valid hosting agreement or suitable contract is concluded with a research institution in the federal territory.
The residence permit is usually granted for the period of the research project, but for not longer than 3 years.
Residence permits are granted for 1 year respectively and then extended in the case of research institutions that are not recognised by the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees (BAMF) according to the Residence Act (AufenthG).

The residence permit also allows work as a teacher or in a self-employed capacity.

At the end of the research project, the residence permit is extended for 9 months. This enables the person to seek alternative gainful employment that reflects their qualifications.

For short residencies for research purposes lasting not longer than 1 year:

  • Do you hold a valid residence permit for research purposes from another EU Member State according to Directive (EU) 2016/801? Would you like to conduct research at a research institution in Germany that will not involve you residing in the federal territory for longer than 180 days over a period of 360 days? If so, you do not require a German residence permit for your short-term period of research.

  • Do you hold a valid residence permit from another EU Member State according to Directive (EU) 2016/801 to work as a researcher, student, volunteer, au pair or intern? Would you like to conduct research at a research institution in Germany that will involve you residing in the federal territory for longer than 180 days but not more than one year? If so, you will be granted a residence permit as a mobile researcher.
For more information about the terms and requirements for these two cases, refer to the section “More information”.

Prerequisites

  • Employment at a research institution
    Research institutions in the meaning of the Residence Act (AufenthG) are, in particular:
    • research institutions that are recognised by the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees (BAMF);
    • companies or private sector institutions collaborating on the research project with a public sector institution or that continue research that began at a public sector institution; or
    • spin-offs from a public sector institution.
  • Hosting agreement (Aufnahmevereinbarung) or a suitable contract
    You may submit either a hosting agreement or a suitable contract. The hosting agreement contains all required information that would otherwise be included in a suitable contract.
  • Adequate salary for the research activities
    A salary shall be deemed adequate if it is equivalent to at least two thirds of the reference amount pursuant to Section 18 subsection 2 German Social Code IV (SGB IV) (East). This is a monthly net salary of EUR 1,796.67 in 2018.
  • Declaration regarding assumption of costs
    The research institution must in all cases agree in writing to accept the costs that public authorities incur for up to 6 months after the end of the hosting agreement or the contract. They include the costs of living for the foreign national during an unauthorised residence in an EU Member State, as well as for deportation.

    A declaration of cost acceptance is not required for research institutions that
    • are financed from public funds; or
    • submitted a general declaration of cost acceptance to the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees (BAMF) during their recognition procedure.
  • In-person visit
  • Main residence in Berlin during the residence for research purposes

Documents required

  • Valid passport
  • 1 current biometric photo
    35mm x 45mm, frontal shot with neutral facial expression and closed mouth, looking straight into the camera, light background
  • Form "Antrag auf Erteilung eines Aufenthaltstitels" (filled out)
    Only required for first-time application
  • Hosting agreement or a suitable contract
    The hosting agreement must be completed in German and may also include an English version.
  • Health insurance
    Proof of a secure livelihood must also include sufficient health insurance. Those with statutory health insurance are sufficiently insured. Those with private health insurance must consider the type and extent of their health insurance. For more information, please read the leaflet "Information on adequate health insurance".
  • Lease and proof of the monthly rental costs
  • Proof of main residence in Berlin
    • Certificate of registration at the main residence or
    • lease and written confirmation of occupancy from the landlord

Fees

The following fees are assessed based on the actual technical effort when issuing the residence permit.
  • 56.00 to 100.00 euros for the initial issuance
  • 49.00 to 96.00 euros for each extension
  • For Turkish citizens: a maximum of 28.80 euros

Responsible authorities

You can only make use of this service at the Foreigners Registration Office (Ausländerbehörde) of the State Administration Authority (Landesamt für Bürger- und Ordnungsangelegenheiten),
at the Berlin-Charlottenburg site, Keplerstraße 2.

Show other authorities offering these services on the main Service Portal.