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The application for a residence title in the scope of a school-based or company-based vocational training

According to § 16a AufenthG.

The shortage of skilled workers in Germany is a considerable problem. With the new applicable version of the Skilled Workers Immigration Act of 1 March 2020 (Fachkräfteeinwanderungsgesetz) , the legal basis was expanded, which serves to implement various EU directives on the entry and residence of so-called third-country nationals. The background to this is, in particular, the shortage of skilled workers in the health and care sector, as the Corona pandemic last year also ruthlessly exposed.

The extensive amendments to the law affect the Residence Act in particular. They only affect non-EU citizens from so-called third countries. Above all, the requirements for issuing a residence permit have been adjusted.

Below you will find an overview of the conditions under which you can obtain a residence title for the purpose of training in accordance with § 16a AufenthG.

1. Application for a national visa
The first step is always to go via the visa office of the German consulate in your country of origin. There you apply for a so-called national visa for long-term stays in the Federal Republic of Germany in accordance with § 6 (3) of the Residence Act (AufenthG). The processing time can take several weeks, so keep an eye on when you would like to start your education in Germany and plan enough time. On the respective homepages of the various consulates you can usually see all the necessary requirements and documents you need for the application.T

2. Obtaining a residence title
The national visa within the meaning of § 6 (3) of the Residence Act (AufenthG) is a so-called residence permit in accordance with § 7 of the Residence Act (AufenthG) and, if all the requirements are met, leads to the obtaining of a temporary residence title for the purpose of vocational training or further vocational training in accordance with § 16a of the Residence Act (AufenthG). In order for the national visa to be issued and for you to be able to legally enter and stay in the federal territory, all requirements for the issuance of a residence permit must be met:

a. The granting of a residence permit is at the discretion of the authority

According to § 16a of the Residence Act (AufenthG), a residence permit can be issued for the purpose of in-company training or further training or school-based training. Further training is considered where the applicant has already successfully completed training in a third country or in Germany. It is therefore at the discretion of the authorities whether or not to grant a residence permit. As a rule, however, such a residence permit will be granted precisely in those areas where there is an acute shortage of skilled workers.

In the care sector in particular, a shortage of skilled workers can be assumed, since ensuring the functioning of adequate health care is also in the public interest. A training profession in the care sector can therefore be declared systemically relevant. The authorities must always keep this in mind when considering whether to grant a residence permit or a national visa.

b. Certificate recognition

As a rule, you must submit your school certificates in a certified translation and have them recognised by a certificate recognition office in order to be able to prove the school entrance requirements for the training. To do this, contact your future employer. It is best to do this before signing the training contract.

c. Training contract

You will then need a training contract or a binding training offer. All in-company and, as a rule, also school-based training, e.g. in the care sector, are covered. In the case of school-based training, a school contract must be submitted.

d. Consent of the German Federal Employment Agency

In principle, the German Federal Employment Agency must also give its consent in accordance with § 39 of the Residence Act (AufenthG). In exceptional cases, however, such consent may not be necessary.

e. Proof of health insurance

If you have already received your binding training place, you will usually be covered by health insurance through your new employer.

f. Proof of livelihood

Your livelihood must be secured. This can be assumed if the financial means available to you correspond to the maximum BaföG rate regulated in Germany (825 euros, as of October 2021). If you are not yet able to provide this proof at the time of application, it can be demonstrated by means of a positive prognosis that you will be able to secure your livelihood in the future without recourse to other public funds, for example, using the financial means then available from the start of training.

g. Proof of a main residence in the federal territory

This proof is provided either by presenting a valid tenancy agreement or a certificate of registration of your residence.

h. Sufficient language skills

You must prove that you have sufficient language skills to successfully complete the training. As a rule, a language level of B1 according to the European Framework of Reference must be proven. Please note that the language course must not have taken place too far back in time.

3. Where can problems arise?
If all these requirements are met, the chances are good that you can obtain a national visa and then apply for a residence title in Germany. However, the multitude of official requirements, special features and also the language barrier can become a challenge. In particular, more complicated cases, such as the fact that you are no longer in your country of origin for certain reasons, but are already in Germany, can be major hurdles in the application process. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us.