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Visa and Work Permits

Self-employed persons

EU States and European Economic Community

Citizens of EU States basically do not need a visa for business activities in Germany. You can stay in Germany for an unlimited period of time and also exercise your profession there. A valid form of personal ID is sufficient for entry to the country. No passport is required.

Third-Party Countries

Non-EU citizens generally need a valid passport along with a valid visa for entry to the Federal Republic of Germany. This visa must be obtained prior to entry in the form of a visa stamp in the passport. You can apply for a visa with German agencies abroad (Embassy, Consulate) in the applicant’s home country or in the country where the applicant holds his/her permanent residence.

Citizens of the countries Australia, Israel, Japan, Canada, the Republic of Korea, New Zeeland and the USA do not need prior approval for entry to the territory of the Federal Republic. They can enter the Federal Republic without an entry visa and obtain the necessary residence permit for the exercise of an independent or employed commercial activity in the territory of the Federal Republic.



  Citizens of the EFTA States Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland enjoy freedom of movement in the Federal Republic. This means that they can enter the Federal Republic without applying for entry and can assume independent or employed commercial activity. Citizens of these states do not need any residency permit to stay in Germany.

Residency Permit
If a foreigner wishes to enter the Federal Republic of German in order to pursue gainful employment, he/she needs a residency permit for that specific purpose. The residence permit (AE) is strictly issued for a specified purpose and for a limited time.

For stays of less than three months, self-employed artists generally do not need a residency permit
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