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Employment in science and research

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Forschungsstandort Deutschland, © Colourbox.de

22.03.2023 - Artikel

If you are planning a research stay in Germany, a visa might be necessary.

Who needs a visa?

For stays of more than three months, foreign nationals are generally required to obtain a visa. This does not apply to EU nationals (European Union), nationals of the EEA (European Economic Area) and nationals of Switzerland.
Citizens of Australia, Israel, Japan, Canada, New Zealand, the Republic of Korea, the United States of America and the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland can also obtain the necessary residence permit after entering Germany from the Immigration Office responsible in Germany. You do not need to apply for a visa before moving to Germany.
For all other nationals residing in France, the principle applies: the visa for a long-term stay must be applied for at the Embassy in Paris before entering Germany.

How do I get an appointment to apply?

Under the following link you can register free of charge on the waiting list for an appointment to apply for a visa at the Embassy in Paris: Visa section, waiting list for appointments
If minor children will accompany you to Germany, please indicate this when registering on the appointment waiting list. They will need their own appointment and must attend in person with you.

Please allow for at least 16 weeks to receive your appointment. Approximately two weeks prior to your appointment, you will receive an email notification with the date and time.

In the meantime, please refrain from requesting appointments in writing or by phone. Due to the high volume of applications and limited processing capacity, it is not possible to shorten the waiting time.

What documents must I submit?

Please prepare the following application documents:

  • A complete printout of your electronically completed visa application including barcodes: VIDEX.

    The electronically completed visa application will speed up processing at the Embassy. If you are unable to complete the application electronically, you can download the application form here:
    Form: Application for a long term visa (in German and English language)
    Form: Application for a long term visa (in German and French language)
    Form: Application for long term visa (in German and Arabic language)
  • a recent, fully biometric passport photo: sample photos
  • your valid original passport and two copies
  • your valid French residence permit and two copies
  • detailed letter of invitation or hosting agreement (“Aufnahmevereinbarung”) to a university or other academic institution in Germany.
    The letter should indicate the period of employment, the scientific activity as well as its remuneration
  • proof of qualification (diplomas, certificates or similar) and two copies
    The documents must be submitted in German, English or French. Documents in other languages must be translated into German, English or French by a sworn translator. Information on sworn specialists can be found here:
    Translations (in French language)
    Translations (in German language)

    Documents from many countries need to be legalized or apostilled for the use in Germany. This should already be available when the application is submitted, but can also be submitted later during the application process. You can find information on this here: International recognition of documents
  • proof of health insurance valid in Germany (must be presented at the latest when picking up the visa)
    As a rule, insurance coverage exists in Germany from the time you start working. The health insurance certificate must therefore cover the period between entry and the first day of work.

Please note that your application can only be processed if your documents are complete on the day of application. In individual cases, the submission of further documents may be required.


The processing fee for a national visa is EUR 75,00 in most cases. For applications of minor children the fee is reduced to EUR 37,50. The fee must be paid in cash at the Embassy when applying. Please bring with you the exact amount.
The processing fee is non-refundable, even if the visa is denied.
The German Embassy Paris expressly points out that apart from the above-mentioned processing fee, no other fees will be charged (e.g. for making an appointment). Only expenses (e.g. for mailing your visaed passport after the procedure has been completed) have to be paid by the applicant.

When will I get the visa?

Passports with various visas
Visa© Colourbox

The Embassy in Paris will decide on your application after the relevant immigration Office (“Ausländerbehörde”) in Germany has been involved. On average, the processing time is a few days up to three months from the date of application. Please understand that we cannot respond to questions regarding the status of your visa application. We will contact you as soon as the processing of your visa application has been completed.

If your application has been granted, we will notify you by email when and how to submit your passport to obtain the visa. If your visa application has been denied, there may be several reasons. We will tell you these reasons in a rejection letter. You can always submit a new application with complete and verifiable documents.

How long is the visa valid for?

In case of a positive decision, a visa for entry to Germany will be issued with a validity of three months. Your visa will show your full name, passport number and photo. Indicated is the number of days of stay and the period of validity of the visa, i.e. the time you have until you receive your final residence permit by the immigration office.
Therefore, do not forget to register at the Residents' Registration Office (“Einwohnermeldeamt”) immediately after entering Germany and make an appointment at the immigration office (“Ausländerbehörde”). With the entry visa you can travel within the Schengen area.

Data protection

Information pursuant to Art. 13 and 14 Regulation (EU) 2016/679 (General Data Protection Regulation) on data protection in the visa application process can be found here: Data protection (in German language)

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