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Country Information - Germany

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  A residence permit, which also gives you access to the labor market, is needed in order to work in Germany. You have to apply for this permit prior to entering Germany and submit the application to the competent German mission abroad. Once submitted, the German mission will forward the application to the foreigner's authority for a decision. The foreigner's authority is in the location, in Germany, where the job will start. The decision will be coordinated by the foreigner's authority and the employment office that will issue the permit. When the foreigner's authority has approved the application, the German mission abroad will issue the visa for entry.
Visa Requirements  
  There are different requirements for visa regarding European Union (EU) nationals and non-European Union (non-EU) nationals.

EU nationals do not require a visa to enter Germany. Non-EU nationals, however, in general will require a visa to stay in Germany. There are minor distinctions as to when a visa is to be obtained (ie. prior entry, or after entry to Germany). For example, the new "Immigration Act" allow nationals of Australia, Canada, Israel, Japan, New Zealand, South Korea and the United States to apply for the permit after arrival in Germany.

The list of countries and their visa requirements for entry into Germany can be found here on the German Federal Office Website: http://www.auswaertiges-amt.de/diplo/en/WillkommeninD/EinreiseUndAufenthalt/StaatenlisteVisumpflicht.html

The website also includes the application forms. Below is the direct link for the English version of the visa for entry: http://www.auswaertiges-amt.de/diplo/en/WillkommeninD/EinreiseUndAufenthalt/Download/VisumantragEngl.pdf
  For a short stay visa (stays of three months or less), it takes approximately two to ten working days for the German mission to process and make a decision. The process, however, for a longer stay (stays of more than three months), or to take up gainful employment can take several months.

The approval process for a long or employment visa usually takes up to three months, or longer in some cases. It is advised that the application be submitted in good time.
  While living and working in Germany with a valid resident permit, you can have your spouse, who is not a German nation, live and work with you in Germany.

EU nationals and citizens of Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland only need to register with the town hall office of their residence.

For non-EU nationals, you will need to apply for a visa for family reunification from the German mission abroad. As well, sufficient documentation is needed, which includes a marriage certificate and a German passport of the German spouse. The process following is similar to the process of the visa for entry.
Health Insurance  
  Statutory health insurance is available for everyone — as well, private health insurance is also available. Statutory health insurance insures an individual for sickness and accidents, and subject to conditions, also covers unemployment, old age, trainees, and students.

Health insurance contributions are paid monthly and are split equally between the employer and the employee. This is paid monthly and the amount is dependent on the individual's income. This payment is deducted from the employee's gross earnings.

The emergency numbers in Germany are 110 for the Police and 112 for the Fire Brigade.
Additional Information
  Additional information on Germany can also be found on the Young Germany website: http://www.young-germany.de/index.php
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