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Bringing Your Family

If your spouse and family members accompany you to Bielefeld, they also have to go through a set of formalities, such as applying for a visa. Please take care of a visa for your family as early as possible.

German migration and residence laws grant international scholars the fundamental right to bring their spouses and children with them. However, if you are a citizen of a country that does not belong to the EU or the EEA, you must provide proof that there is sufficient living space for them in Germany and that the family is financially self-supporting. This generally requires written confirmation from the host university or institute in Germany.

For family members accompanying you or intending to join you later, you will require:


  • For your husband or wife: the original marriage certificate with a certified German translation unless the original is an international document
  • For your children: the original birth certificate with a certified German translation unless the original is an international document
  • A copy of the letter confirming your scholarship or your work contract

If the application is not made jointly, a family member will also require a copy of the international scholar's passport containing her or his valid residence permit.


If members of your family accompany you to Germany or join you later, they should in any case bring certified translations of marriage and birth certificates of confirmable authenticity. They will need these in Germany in order to convert visas into long-term residence permits. Otherwise the visa regulations of Visa and Entry are also valid for your spouse and children.

The German foreigner's office (Ausländerbehörde) will check and decide if your spouse will get the permission to work. If you have a concrete proposal, you will need to prove the offer and submit a description.

You can obtain up-to-date and detailed information on this from the Employment Office (Agentur für Arbeit), the Foreigner's Registration Office (Ausländerbehörde) at your place of residence in Germany, and under:

->Euraxess - Researchers in Motion
->Eures - The European Job Mobility Portal
->Living and Working: Germany
->Federal Foreign Office


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Monday til Friday:
Room: C5-133

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