Residence Permit (residence title) application

Foreigners require a residence permit for entry and residence in the Federal Republic of Germany, unless otherwise provided for by European Union law or by (national) legal regulations or unless a right of residence exists on the basis of an Association Agreement between the European Economic Community and the country of origin.

For a longer stay in Germany, foreigners must apply for a residence permit after entry, which can be either with or without a visa, depending on the nationality, purpose and duration of the intended stay.

The residence permit is a temporary residence permit and is issued in accordance with Chapter 2, Sections 3 to 7 of the Residence Act. Depending on the purpose of residence, the residence permit has various legal consequences, in particular with regard to the establishment of residence, family reunification, the pursuit of gainful employment or access to social benefits.

Since 1 September 2011, residence permits have generally been issued as electronic residence permits (eAT) - in credit card format. Among other things, biometric features (one photograph, two fingerprints) will be stored in the eAT. In addition, the eAT can - optionally - also be used as electronic proof of identity (eID) in the course of e-government and e-business as well as for electronic signatures.

Various documents may be required. For more detailed information, please contact the relevant office.

Foreigners requiring a visa must apply for a residence permit to extend their stay before their visa expires. The same applies to the extension of residence permits already issued.

Foreigners exempted from the visa requirement must apply for the residence permit required for a further stay immediately after entry or within three months at the latest.

Fees are charged in accordance with the Residence Ordinance. For more detailed information, please contact the relevant office. 

Further information on the eAT can be found on the website of the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees (BAMF):
The electronic residence permit (eAT) 

The counties or city/counties.

In Kiel:
You can ask for an appointment with the Immigration Department by telephone.

You can also send your appointment request by e-mail to . Please state your last name, your first name, your date of birth and the reason of your request.

Clients are assigned to a contact person at the immigration office alphabetically by the first letter of their surname.

Forms are also available without an appointment at the reception desk at the following times:

  • Mondays and Tuesdays 8.30 to 13.00
  • Thursdays 8.30 to 13.00 and 14.00 to 16.00