European Union permanent residence - official Manual (example: Berlin)

EU long-term residence permit allows you obtain residence other EU countries under simplified conditions

EU long-term
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              residence permit,work in germany Screenshot 1. (Source:
EU long-term
            residence permit,eu residence permit,poland residence permit,
            estonia residence permit,latvia residence permit,germany
            residence permit,work in germany Screenshot 2. (Source:

EU long-term residence permit serves to solidify the residence of a foreigner in Germany. This residence permit is permanent. On the one hand, it entitles the foreigner to work as an employee or to self-employment in the territory of the Federal Republic of Germany. On the other hand, is the basis for obtaining a right of residence in another member state of the Union under simplified conditions. In this way, a third-country national also acquires a certain freedom of movement within the Union. Besides the settlement permit, EU long-term residence permit is the legally strongest form of a residence title in Germany. The possession of both residence titles is possible*.


  • Application in writing
    Please file an application with the Berlin Immigration Office**.
    You will either receive an invitation for a personal interview or a notification of charges.

  • Possession of a residence title for 5 years;
    You must:
    - have lived in Germany for at least 5 years;
    - have had a residence title (visa, residence permit, settlement permit) without interruption;
    - have a valid residence title at present.

    Important! In case of specific residence titles, such as for the purpose of study or training, EU long-term residence permit may not be issued.

  • Secured livelihood
    - You must have a stable and regular income which is sufficient to maintain yourself and the members of your family.
    - You must be covered by a statutory health insurance or must have taken out a private health insurance for an indefinite period or to be automatically renewed in the same scope as the statutory health insurance.

    Proof of sufficient income to sustain oneself may also be provided by the spouse or same-sex civil partner in the event of marital or civil partnership cohabitation. In this event, both spouses or same-sex civil partners must appear in person.

  • Sufficient knowledge of German;
    At least German level B1;

  • Basic knowledge of the legal and social system in Germany;

  • No criminal record;
    Even fines may prevent the granting of a permanent settlement permit .

  • Adequate pension plan;
    When reaching the age of 67, you must have a provision for old age which covers your maintenance needs. This means that you:
    - have either built up pension rights by paying contributions to the statutory German Pension Fund (normally for at least 60 months) or to another insurance or pension institution entitling you to comparable benefits, or
    - you receive a monthly pension of EUR 1,280.06 (for at least 12 years) from a private pension or life insurance, or
    - you have assets in the amount of EUR 187,682.00.

    The proofs of entitlement to pension schemes may also be provided by the spouse or same-sex partner in the event of marital or civil partner-ship cohabitation.

    Documents required

  • Valid passport, together with your EU Blue Card;

  • 1 current photo (biometric, 35mm x 45mm);
    Not older than 6 months foto - frontal shot with neutral facial expression and closed mouth, looking straight into the camera, light background;

  • Form Antrag auf Erteilung einer Erlaubnis zum Daueraufenthalt-EU;

  • Proof of income
    - contract of employment,
    - current Certificate issued by your German employer (in last 14 days),
    - salary statements for the last 6 months;

    Self-employed persons:
    - Completed audit report*** together with the documents listed therein, e.g. extract from the Commercial Register;
    - Last tax assessment notice.

    - Tax assessment notices,
    - Bank account statements that show a regular inflow,
    - Invoices,e.g. from galleries and auction houses and the like.

    Note: Proof of sufficient resources to sustain oneself may also be provided by the spouse or same-sex partner (see “Prerequisites”).

  • Lease or proof of home ownership
    Proofs of living space and of monthly rent or cost of housing of own property (house or apartment) have to be supplied;

  • Old-age provision
    You can provide evidence of adequate retirement benefits (see section "Prerequisites") by:
    - Pension information notice issued by the German Pension Fund, OR:
    - Proof of entitlement to comparable benefits by another insurance or pension institution, OR:
    - Private pension or life insurance, OR:
    - Own or operating assets.

    The proofs of entitlement to pension schemes may also be provided by the spouse or same-sex partner (see “Prerequisites”).

  • Health insurance (insurance card, insurance policy)
    - If you are covered by statutory health insurance, a current confirmation of health insurance coverage from your provider.
    - If you are insured with a private health insurance company, the policy and proof of contributions paid (e.g. statements of account);

  • Proof of main residence in Berlin**
    Certificate of registration at the main residence,
    lease contract and written confirmation of occupancy from the landlord (Wohnungsgeberbestätigung);


    - For the issue of the EU long-term residence permit: €109.00.
    - If the application must be rejected: €54.50.

    How to proceed - required Steps

    Step 1: learn the Prerequisites;
    Step 2: learn required documents. Note which are missing;
    Step 3: make an appointment for the language test (if applicable);
    Step 4: obtain from your employer Bescheinigung des Arbeitsgebers;
    Step 5: make copies of the Job contract and Salary statements;
    If you are self-employed, prepare the Audit report (Prüfungsbericht).
    Step 6: prepare your Proof of Income;
    Step 7: make copy of your Lease contract (Mietvertrag);
    Your Lease contract should include the surface space in square metres . If the surface indication is missing, very likely, the authorities would like to see a proof of sufficient living space (especially if you do not live alone in the apartment);
    Step 8: prepare the Proof of Health Insurance;
    For statutory health insurance your insurance plastic card is sufficient. For the private health insurance you can easily get the confirmation by affording it. See also Leaflet "Health insurance".
    Step 9: prepare your Proof of main residence;
    Step 10: arrange an appointment with the local Immigration authority;
    Step 11: download the application form Antrag auf Erteilung einer Niederlassungserlaubnis. Fill it out and sign it;
    Step 12: appear personally at the Ausländerbehörde on the booked date and time;
    Step 13: submit the application and the other documents for the permanent residence permit (settlement permit, Niederlassungserlaubnis) and pay the fee. Done!

    Processing time: immediately (if sticker in passport) or 4-6 weeks (if settlement permit is issued in the form of plastic card).

    * - Legal basis: BVerwG, Urteil vom 19. März 2013 – 1 C 12.12. ;
    ** - remember that Berlin taken as example in this article. Berlin Immigration Office is also known as LEA (which stays for Landesamt für Einwanderung). More terms and abbreviations see in GLOSSARY;
    *** - The audit report must be completed by a tax consultant, auditor or tax agent.
    Tax refund - how to get a (significant) part of paid taxes back

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    15.06.20 ©️ Jaroslav Plotnikov ( All articles )
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