Skilled Immigration Act (Fachkräfteeinwanderungsgesetz)

Employees with different professions

Employees with different professions, © colourbox.de

15.03.2024 - Article

New rules for the immigration of skilled workers to Germany are in force since March 2020. The new law extends the opportunities of labour-immigration to Germany for qualified professionals from outside the European Union. General information on working and living in Germany, including on the provisions of the new act, can be found here: https://www.make-it-in-germany.com/en/

For an explainer on the Skilled Immigration Law, please have a look at this short video.

Before applying for a visa under the new rules, interested candidates need to obtain official recognition of their professional qualification from the competent German authorities. Information about the procedures can be found on https://www.anerkennung-in-deutschland.de/html/en/. Interested professionals should start these procedures early.

You may be eligible for a work-and-residence permit (visa) for skilled workers:

  • if your foreign degree or certificate has been officially recognized and
  • if you have already been offered a specific job offer – you must ask your future employer to fill out the “Declaration regarding a contract of employment” (Erklärung zum Beschäftigungsverhältnis);
  • if you meet the required language skills

You should only submit your visa application if you meet all the requirements and are able to produce complete documents. We can accept your visa application only AFTER your foreign qualification has officially been recognized.

If your documents are complete, please register for an appointment with our Service Partner. The German Embassy works together with the service partner TLScontact. TLScontact assists with the acceptance of applications, forwards the complete application documents to the visa office and handles the return of the passport. The application is processed exclusively by the German Embassy. Applications for a visa can be submitted at the visa center of TLScontact.
Further information and assistance via TLScontact.

Information about the fast-track procedure for skilled workers

If you have already found an employer, you can authorize this employer to submit a fast-track application for you as a skilled worker at the local Immigration Office (Ausländerbehörde) in Germany, i.e. at your future place of work. The foreigners’ authority will advise your employer and be of assistance in filing an application for recognition of your foreign degree or certificate. The authority is also responsible for obtaining the necessary approval from the Federal Employment Agency (Bundesagentur für Arbeit). The authorities and the Federal Employment Agency must make decisions on recognition and approval within certain deadlines. The fee for this procedure is 411 Euros, to be paid by the future employer in Germany. In addition, there are fees for recognition of your degree or certificate. When all prerequisites that can be examined in Germany have been met, the foreigners’ authority will issue what is called advanced approval (Vorabzustimmung), which your employer will then send to you. As soon as you have received advanced approval, you can make a visa application appointment. At the appointment, you must present the original letter of advanced approval together with other documents. As a rule, the mission abroad will take a decision on your visa application within the following three weeks.

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