Germany Residence Permit for Family Reunion

Types of permits available, the eligibility criteria, requirements and application process

Considering joining family members in Germany? Understanding the steps to acquire a German Family Residence Permit is crucial. This guide walks you through permit types, eligibility, the application process, and other important details for a seamless transition.

Introduction to German Family Residence Permit

The German Family Residence Permit is an official authorization for family members of German citizens or legal foreign residents to live in Germany. It’s a key step for those seeking to reunite with loved ones and establish a life together in the country.

If you wish to stay in Germany for more than 90 days, you are required to obtain a residence permit, regardless of your citizenship. For the purpose of family reunion, a temporary residence permit is given to foreigners wishing to join their family members living in Germany along with a long-stay visa that can later be extended to a residence permit. The rules for family reunion in Germany are complex and will vary depending on your situation. Eligible persons for residence titles for family reunion include foreign spouses, minor unmarried children aged 16 or over, the parent of a German minor child, and in some cases, distant family members of either German nationals or foreign persons living in Germany. The application process for a German family reunion visa consists of completing the application form, gathering the required documents, setting an appointment for a visa interview, and paying the visa fee. The processing time for a family reunion residence permit is about three weeks, and the permit is usually issued for up to one initial year, with a possibility to be extended for all the time needed while the family keeps living together. German law permits those with a family reunion residence title to work, given they meet certain conditions.

Who Qualifies for a Germany Family Residence Permit?

Eligible applicants include:

  • Spouses or Registered Partners of German citizens or residents.
  • Unmarried and Minor Children of German citizens or residents.
  • Parents or Legal Guardians of unmarried minor German citizens.

Certain nationals are exempt from the permit requirement, including citizens of EU, EEA, Australia, Canada, Israel, Japan, New Zealand, South Korea, or the USA.

Navigating the Application Process

To obtain a Germany Family Residence Permit:

  1. Seek Expert Legal Advice: Consult immigration experts for guidance tailored to German immigration requirements.
  2. Obtain a Germany Family Reunion Visa: If you’re not from an exempt country, secure this visa before applying for the permit.
  3. Complete Visa Application Steps: Fill out forms, gather documents, attend an interview, and pay the visa fee.
  4. Register Your Address: Upon arrival in Germany, register at a local office.
  5. Apply for the Residence Permit: Schedule an appointment with German Immigration authorities, submit required documents, and pay the fee.

Essential Documents for Germany Family Residence Permit

Ensure you have all necessary documents, including:

  • Residence Title documents.
  • Proof of address.
  • Comprehensive health insurance.
  • Proof of German language skills (at least level A1).
  • Additional documents vary based on family relationship.

Consider seeking legal assistance for document procurement.

See Also

Fees, Processing Time, and Validity

Key considerations for the permit process include:

  • Fees range from €56 to €100, with reduced rates for children.
  • Processing takes about three weeks on average.
  • Initial permit validity is one year, with potential for permanent residence.

How Long Does it take to Obtain a Family Reunion Residence Permit in Germany

Obtaining a family reunion residence permit in Germany generally takes approximately 1-1.5 months. However, processing times can vary depending on individual cases and the efficiency of the German Embassy or Consulate where the application is filed. Some factors that could affect the processing time include the completeness of the application, the number of applications received, and whether additional documents are requested. It is essential to start the application process as early as possible to allow enough time for the permit to be issued before the expiration of the family member’s current visa.

Balancing Work with the Permit

Holders of family reunion permits can work in Germany under certain conditions:

  • Family member must have their own employment permit, EU Blue Card, or be a highly skilled individual or researcher.

German Language Requirement

Basic German knowledge is often required, unless exemptions apply:

  • Exemptions include holding an EU Blue Card, having a disability hindering language learning, or possessing a university degree

Considering a move abroad? Get expert assistance with immigration matters from trusted professionals.

What is the Process for Applying for a Family Reunion Residence Permit in Germany

To apply for a family reunion residence permit in Germany, follow these steps:

1. Complete the application form provided by the German government.
2. Prepare the required documents, including a valid passport, proof of relationship, proof of address in Germany, and evidence of financial stability.
3. Schedule an appointment with the German Embassy or Consulate in your area using their online appointment systems.
4. Attend the appointment with all required documents and pay the visa fee (€75 for adults; lower fees for minors and Turkish citizens).
5. Wait for the decision on your application, which typically takes around three weeks. During this time, you may continue to live in Germany with your family while your application is being processed.
6. If your application is approved, you will receive a national visa allowing you to stay in Germany for 90 days before receiving a final residence permit upon arrival in Germany.

For detailed lists of required documents and more information, refer to official sources such as the German Federal Ministry for Internal Affairs and Building, the German Embassy in the USA, and Germany Visa. Keep in mind that the process and requirements might change based on your nationality and circumstances, so consult relevant resources or seek professional help when preparing your application.

Acquiring a German Family Residence Permit is essential for reuniting with loved ones in Germany. Understanding eligibility, required documents, and application procedures empowers you to navigate the process successfully. Seek legal assistance for expert guidance. Embrace the opportunity to build a new life with your family in Germany.