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How can I bring my family to Germany?

Updated: Aug 20, 2022

One of the first things that cross your mind as soon as you move to a new country to work or live would be ‘how do I bring my family together?’ A German reunification visa lets you bring your spouse or children to Germany.

The process for bringing your spouse or partner or children to Germany depends on whether they are European Union citizens or not.

EU Citizens

If the person you want to bring to Germany is a European Union citizen, they do not need a visa or a residence permit. EU citizens are allowed to live and work in Germany or any EU member states without a visa or residence permit using their Freedom of Movement rights.

Other Nationals

Bringing other nationals requires a little bit of effort and sometimes it's a lengthy process.

To start with the process, you need to make sure that you have the necessary rights to bring your family members to Germany. You need to have either a permanent residency, a permanent settlement permit, or an EU blue Card.

Where should I apply for a German visa for my spouse or partner

In general your spouse or partner can apply for a family reunification visa in any German mission where they reside. However, the German mission in some countries have outsourced the visa processing to third party visa centers.

Check if your spouse's country have a German mission

As per the visa policy of Germany you should not apply for a visa six months prior to your planned trip. The latest time you can apply is two weeks ahead of your trip.

The recommended time to file your visa application would be four to six weeks before your planned date of travel.

Documents required to apply for a family reunification visa for Germany
  • Fully filled and duly signed Visa Application Form.

  • Valid Passport.

  • Biometric passport photo.

  • Travel health insurance

  • Proof of German knowledge (optional)

  • Flight tickets

  • Documents to prove your financial stability (salary slips, employment contract and bank statements)

  • Proof of accommodation in Germany (rental agreement, hotel booking, etc.).

  • Copy of your passport.

  • Copy of your residence permit (if applicable)

  • Proof of relationship

  • Marriage certificate.

  • Registered partnership certificate

Processing time of a German family reunification visa

The visa processing time varies depending on the location you apply for the visa, your personal situation or even where the visa is processed. For example, the places where the visa processing is outsourced may send the application to the nearest German mission to process it.

In general, it could take from days to a couple of weeks.

Bringing your children to Germany

You can bring your children who are under the age of 18 years to Germany on a family reunification visa provided you have the custody of the child.

If your partner is not moving to Germany and you both have joint custody of the child, the partner who’s not moving must give their consent before applying for the visa.

You can also bring your matured children to Germany if they are differently abled and need support. However, you may need to undergo a different process and might need to submit additional supporting documents.

Additional documents required for children :

  • School certificates mentioning parentage and date of birth

  • Proof of marriage of parents

  • Birth certificate (optional)

Bringing your family to Germany offers many benefits. Not only the financial benefits offered by the federal government, but from small towns to big cities, Germany is a very safe country to raise a family and a great place to live.

On your way to Germany

You can find all the information you need about living and working in Germany at

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