Found or in the process of finding a job in Berlin? We are going to guide you through the process of getting a work visa in Berlin and give you an overview of all the requirements for a successful application. In Berlin, expats can find many jobs available, starting from jobs in start-ups to professional and skilled positions. It’s the hub for talented youths, specialists combining to an innovative universal workforce.
Despite all job opportunities in the city, those who have a basic understanding of the German language, usually have a better chance at securing a job.
Getting a work visa in Berlin, grants you permission to work anywhere in Germany.
What is Work Visa?
A work visa is an authorisation card granted by the German Government, that permits you to move from your country and go to work in Germany. It acts as your gateway to Berlin and comes with diverse requirements depending on the application type and status. For instance, if you are from an EU country or countries with agreements with Germany, you don’t need the work visa. But all other immigrants across the globe must have the work visa to stay and work in Berlin.
Who Needs a Work Visa in Berlin?
As mentioned above, people coming from certain locations do not need a work visa to work in Berlin. This applies to all European Union (EU) and European Economic Area (EEA) citizens. Also, citizens of Switzerland, Iceland, Norway and Liechtenstein have free entry to Germany.
Countries with specific agreements with Germany include Canada, Israel, South Korea, Japan, Australia, Taiwan, Hong Kong, US and New Zealand. But their permission also has a number of requirements. They must apply for both resident and working permits from the Alien’s Authority in Berlin.
All the other persons wishing to work in Germany’s capital city have to get a work visa. You need to visit the labour office – Arbeitsamt in Berlin and start your application before travelling to Berlin. To ease your application process, deliver the job contract to the labour office.
To qualify for a Work Visa in Berlin;
- You should have a job agreement in place.
- The employer offering the job must be in Germany.
- You must have the qualifications for the specific job you are applying.
- You also need to have ZAV approval.
- You also need to have a place to stay prior to applying.
- German health insurance. Health insurance is mandatory by law in Germany, and you must present the approval during the visa interview.
*Good to know – It’s not compulsory to speak German to receive a work visa. But, getting a work visa in Berlin with the ability to speak German is an advantage while searching for a job. For a work visa in Berlin, you do not need a university degree. A university degree is only required for the job seeker visa.
If you are unsure if you need a VISA, you can find more information in the article: Who Needs a German VISA and Residence Permit?
How to Apply for Work Visa in Berlin?
Getting a work visa in Berlin consists of a number of steps:
1. As previously mentioned, you must have a job offer in Germany. See our guide on finding a job in Berlin.
2. Find the German Embassy or a representative body in your home country and submit your visa application. The representative authorities in your country can be;
- The German Consulate.
- The German Embassy.
- The Visa Application Centre
- You can visit a German Embassy in the nearby country in case your country doesn’t have a German representative authority.
3. Get all the Necessary Documents ready
Ensure you collect all the documents for getting a work visa in Berlin to have solid proof that you qualify for a work visa. You will also attend a visa interview, apart from submitting the application papers according to the instructions you receive. The main documents consist of;
- Two signed application forms.
- Two passport photos.
- A passport.
- Proof of registered address.
- German health insurance.
- Employment contract. It should highlight the gross annual salary and proper illustration of the job type.
- An approval from the Federal Employment Agency.
- An official Curriculum Vitae with all your qualifications and carrier experience.
- Qualifications. Anything that proves that you are qualified for the job.
- Cover letter to indicate the purpose of going to Germany and period of time.
- Clean police record.
- A receipt of Germany visa payment fee.
- A Declaration of Accuracy of Information
4. Get ready, prepare yourself and go to the interview.
5. Wait for a Visa Application approval
For a full guide read: Steps to Apply For A German VISA – The Entry VISA Process.
What happens if you don’t have a job in Berlin yet?
If you aspire to work in Berlin but did not find the right job yet, there is another way to go around the situation. You can apply for a job seeker visa that will give you a travelling permit to seek for work in Germany for six months. With that being said, to apply, you must have a university degree. After you find a job in Berlin, you will need to change your visa to a standard work visa.
Other types of Visas and Permits you can apply for include;