For certain VISA options, it is required to get your foreign qualifications recognised in Germany. If the German authorities have determined they cannot be fully qualified due to missing theoretical or practical skills, you have the option to enter Germany and acquire those missing qualifications.
The VISA for the recognition of foreign qualifications can be obtained to attend for example company or technical training courses, preparatory courses or job-related language classes. The VISA also provides the benefit to work in Germany during your stay under certain conditions.
Requirements To Obtain a VISA For The Recognition Of Foreign Qualification
Third-country nationals can apply for this VISA if they qualify for the following requirements:
- The assessment of your qualifications by the competent authority in Germany has determined you are missing certain theoretical or practical skills in order to fully recognise your qualifications.
- You have registered and been accepted to a relevant program covering the deficiencies pointed out by the competent authority. Companies must provide a training plan which needs approval from the Federal Employment Agency (BA).
- Proof that you are able to cover the costs of living during your stay in Germany.
- Possess at least a level of A2 in German language skills according to the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR).
Additional options are available to those who are looking to work in unregulated professions. You can compensate for deficiencies identified by the authority who recognise qualifications, by obtaining employment as a skilled professional. For this purpose, additional requirements apply:
- Possess a job offer
- If the authority has determined practical skills are required in order to recognise your qualifications.
- A training plan from your employer
- The employer must ensure that the work you will perform will provide you with the necessary recognition.
Duration of the VISA and Employment Opportunities
The VISA for the recognition of foreign qualifications is issued for up to 18 months. It is possible to receive a 6-month extension if you need to repeat an exam or similar. This is being granted on an individual basis.
You can work alongside your training for up to ten (10) hours per week. However, if the work is related to your qualifications and you have received a job offer to continue working, there are exceptions to these 10-hour restrictions upon approval from the Federal Employment Agency (BA).
It is also important to understand the health insurance requirements for both short stays and longer stays.
Employment After Completing The Qualification Programme
If you successfully complete the training program for gaining recognition for your foreign qualification, you are able to stay in Germany for up to one (1) additional year in order to find employment within your recognised qualifications.
Within this one (1) year period, you can apply for a residence permit for jobseekers at the local Foreigners Office without leaving the county. During this time you can take up any kind of employment.
Furthermore, it is possible to change the category of your residence permit without leaving the country if you already have obtained an employment contract, been accepted into a study, course or training position.
The following are some of the residence permits you can apply for: