Here are some links about living and working in Germany that I have personally found useful:

Work Visa & Residency Permit

My own working needs required a visa to work as a freelance English trainer.  Most of this information is related to that.

If you are an American, Canadian or other non-EU citizen, you need to have a permit to reside, and ultimately work in Germany. You can enter Germany with a three-month tourist visa and receive a restricted residency permit. At that time you can apply for a position and, if accepted, begin the process of obtaining permission to work as a freelance instructor. In most cases the visa applications are approved. The fee for obtaining a visa with permission to work as a free-lance instructor is about $40.

Although you may begin working once you have received your residence permit, you will need to go to the tax office (Finanzamt) in your city to get a tax number. By German law, a tax number is required in order to compensate free-lance employees.

  • This how-to page talks about residing and working in Germany, and lists the important steps you have to take to register, apply for the visa, etc.  This site has a lot of useful information about various practical and cultural aspects of living in Germany.
  • This page talks about teaching English in Berlin (& tips on getting the work visa).
  • The German Way – getting a resident permit.
  • Criminal Records Checks in case you need to present a “certificate of good conduct” (I didn’t)
  • How to apply for the self-employment visa in Germany

Life & Culture

Teaching English

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