EU Citizens

The Law on the general freedom of movement of Union citizens regulates the stay in Germany of citizens of the European Union and of the European Economic Area and of their family members.

• European Union Citizens with rights to free movement (Union citizens) and citizens of the European Economic Area (EEA) do not require any residence document for their stay in Germany. An overview of who has a right to free movement can be found in the EU and EEA States Table on the right-hand side.
• A certificate of your residence rights may be issued automatically by the EU Office of the Foreigners Authority. You do not need to make any application. On this certificate, your passport or your personal ID is noted and it is only valid together with these papers, which you should therefore always have with you.
• Family members who are not themselves citizens of the EU/EEA automatically receive a residence card. This includes: spouses and children up to the age of 21 as well as the parents and children of the Union citizen, and of their spouse, to whom residence is granted.
• For same-sex life partners of Germans, the same regulations apply as for other life partners of Germans. You will find further information at the EU Office of the Foreigners Authority.
• Union/EEA citizens entitled to free movement, as well as their family members, do not need a work permit in order to take up employment.
These regulations also apply to Swiss citizens.
For members of the "new" EU States (except Malta and Cyprus), the following should additionally be noted:
• Union citizens from the new EU States enjoy full freedom of movement only, for example, as self-employed people or as students.
• Employees must apply for a work permit, but they may do this after entry into the country. If a position is offered to you, apply for an EU work permit at the Job Agency in charge of the district in which your employer has his/her head office.
• The certificate on residence rights will only be issued when you have obtained an EU work permit from the Job Agency. The same applies for your family members who are living with you in Germany.
The EU Office of the Foreigners Authority of the Rhein-Sieg Region will be glad to provide you with individual advice.

Transitional Regulations
Anyone who has an EC work permit issued before 1 January 2005 according to the "old" law need not do anything. This automatically continues to be valid. You will receive the certificate of residence rights together with the issuing of a new passport.