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Source: BUS Sachsen-Anhalt (Linie6PLus)

Applying for a settlement permit for highly qualified specialists


If you have an academic degree and are or want to work in Germany as a highly qualified specialist, you can obtain a settlement permit in special individual cases - even immediately after your arrival.

You are considered highly qualified, for example, if you work as a scientist with special expertise or have gained at least two years of professional experience as a teacher in a prominent function.

The settlement permit represents an independent right of residence independent of the original purpose of residence. It entitles the holder to engage in gainful employment and is unlimited in time and space.

Please note the exceptional nature of the immediate granting of a settlement permit. High qualification as such alone is not sufficient to accept a particular individual case. Rather, it depends on the overall view of all the facts.

  • You have an academic degree, i.e. you have
    • a German university degree,
    • a recognised foreign university degree, or
    • a foreign university degree comparable to a German university degree.
      Please note:

If you wish to work in a regulated profession (e.g. in academic health professions), the recognition of your foreign university degree by the competent authority is mandatory.

  • You belong to the circle of highly qualified specialists, i.e. you are, for example,
    • Scientists with special specialist knowledge,
    • Teacher in a prominent function,
    • scientific staff in a prominent function.

Please note:

The list is not exhaustive.

Special specialist knowledge exists if you have a special qualification or knowledge of above-average importance in a special subject area. This is usually the case if a research area can be identified in which you have acquired special expertise (for example, through successful projects, research projects or publications). It does not depend on the field of your activity.

The outstanding function of teachers is given by chair holders as well as institute directors.

Scientific staff are particularly active when they independently develop and carry out projects beyond the usual tasks, lead or are to lead scientific departments, project or working groups. The amount of the salary does not matter.

  • You have an employment contract or a concrete job offer.
  • You can prove that you have at least two years of professional experience.
  • Furthermore, it requires a positive prognosis by the immigration authority that your integration into the (legal and social) living conditions in Germany is to be expected (for example, with existing knowledge of German, previous stays in Germany or international experience).
  • You are able to secure your livelihood (including health insurance) for yourself (and your family) independently, i.e. without the use of public services.
  • There are no grounds of public security and order to prevent your stay in Germany.
  • Recognized and valid identity document (for example, passport or passport substitute)
  • Visa, if required for entry
  • Current biometric photo in passport format (45 x 35 mm)
  • Proof of securing one's livelihood (for example, proof of income, employment contract, equity, pension notice, proof of receipt of benefits such as parents or child benefit, alimony payments)
  • Proof of health insurance coverage (for example, confirmation of health insurance coverage or insurance policy)
  • Proof of special qualification or professional experience (e.g. training certificates, certificates, employment reference)
  • Employment contract or binding job offer
  • in the case of a regulated profession:
    • Professional admission (e.g. license to practice medicine, professional license)
    • Recognition of the foreign university degree by the competent authority

The documents and information must always be submitted in German. In individual cases, the Foreigners' Registration Office may require less or further proof.

Cost amount (fixed): 147,00 Euro

Note: Additional fees may apply for issuing the settlement permit in the form of an electronic residence permit, which can also be used as an electronic proof of identity.

The timing and form of charging and payment vary depending on the authority.

Lower fees may apply for Turkish nationals.

Application deadline:

Duration (for span): 6 to 8

Remark (for more information on the deadline):

The application should be received by the Foreigners' Registration Office no later than six to eight weeks before your visa or current residence permit expires.

Remark (for more information on the deadline):

The settlement permit is issued for an unlimited period. Only the electronic residence title (eAT card) is issued for a limited period and must be renewed after the end of its validity.

Duration (with range): approx. 6 to 8

Note for further information on processing time:

The processing time may vary depending on the workload of the Foreigners' Registration Office.

The production of the electronic residence title by Bundesdruckerei takes about 4 to 6 weeks.

  • Appeal against the decision of the Foreigners' Registration Office within one month of notification.
  • Bringing an action before the court named in the notice of opposition if the objection is not complied with.

The immigration authority responsible for the place of residence of the applicant.

Forms available: No

Written form required: No

Informal application possible: Yes

Personal appearance required: Yes

  • The settlement permit must be applied for before the validity of your current residence permit expires.
  • Find out whether your immigration authority allows you to submit your application online or has a special application form.
  • If the application is only possible in person, make an appointment at the Foreigners' Registration Office. In the case of an online application, the Foreigners' Registration Office will contact you after receipt of your application to make an appointment.
  • During the appointment, your identity and documents will be checked (please bring your documents, preferably original, to the appointment).
  • Depending on the federal state, it is possible that the consent of another authority is required for the granting of the settlement permit.
  • If your application is granted, your fingerprints will be taken for the production of the settlement permit in the form of the electronic residence title (eATKarte).
  • The Foreigners' Registration Office commissions the production of the eATKarte at Bundesdruckerei. After completion, you will receive information and can pick up the eAT card from the responsible office. The eAT card must always be picked up in person.
  • If your application is rejected, you will receive a rejection notice.
  • For gainful employment in a non-regulated profession, you can find further information on how your foreign university degree is assessed in Germany under https://anabin.kmk.org/anabin.html . In addition, there is the possibility of an individual certificate evaluation by the Central Office for Foreign Education under https://www.kmk.org/zab/zentralstellefuer-auslaendisches-bildungswesen.html to prove comparability with a German university degree.
  • In order to obtain the settlement permit, no knowledge of the German language must be proven.
  • The granting of a settlement permit is at the discretion of the competent immigration authority. Applicants are therefore only entitled to a decision free of errors of assessment.
  • The procedure is usually carried out in German.
  • A settlement permit may expire in the event of a stay of more than six months outside Germany if this stay abroad has not previously been coordinated with the Foreigners' Registration Office.
  • All information provided to the Foreigners' Registration Office should be correct and complete to the best of our knowledge and belief so that the request can be processed without major delays.
  • Incorrect or incomplete information can slow down the procedure and be detrimental to those affected. In an emergency, incorrect or incomplete information that is not completed or corrected in time vis-à-vis the immigration authority may result in the withdrawal of residence rights already granted, a fine, imprisonment of up to three years or expulsion from the federal territory.
  • Due to the complexity of the right of residence, this description is for information purposes only and is not legally binding.

Ministry of the Interior and Municipal Affairs of the State of Brandenburg

The text was automatically translated based on the German content.

Landkreis Harz - Sachgebiet Ausländerbehörde
Friedrich-Ebert-Straße 42
38820 Halberstadt, Stadt
03941 5970-4544
03941 5970-4160
Monday:08:00 - 12:00
13:00 - 16:00
Tuesday08:00 - 12:00
13:00 - 16:00
Wednesday08:00 - 12:00
13:00 - 16:00
Thursday08:00 - 12:00
13:00 - 16:00