If you would like to make the Stuttgart Region your habitual residence and are not a citizen of a member state of the EU, the European Economic Area (EEA) or of Switzerland, i.e. you come from a third country, the rules of the Residence Act are particularly important for you. In order to be able to live and work in the region on a permanent basis, you need a permit referred to as a residence title or 'Aufenthaltstitel'. Apart from the visa for entry, there are different residence titles for long-term residence in Germany.

Residence title

The residence permit cannot be granted by the immigration authorities responsible until after travelling to Germany on a national visa. It is limited in time and is granted for example to allow the recipient to start vocational training, take up employment, be reunited with family or for humanitarian reasons, if the respective prerequisites are met. A residence permit can be extended.

The EU Blue Card is available to academics from third countries with a recognised university degree or a third-level qualification equivalent to a German university qualification. You need to prove that you have a job in Germany which corresponds to the qualification. The prerequisite is an annual gross salary of at least EUR 56,400. With regard to professions for which there is particular demand in Germany, the salary limit is EUR 43,992. The EU Blue Card is initially generally awarded for a four-year period. If certain prerequisites such as good German-language skills are met, a permanent residence permit known as a permanent settlement permit or 'Niederlassungserlaubnis' can be granted in less than two years.

The permanent settlement permit does not have a time limit. It allows you to work in Germany. To obtain a permanent residence permit, you must, as a rule, have had a residence permit for five years and also fulfil further conditions such as good German-language skills.

The permit for permanent right of residence-EC is unlimited in time and entitles the holder to work and to mobility within the European Union. It can be granted to foreign nationals from third countries who have resided lawfully in a member state of the European Union for five years.

Family members

To allow you to maintain your family life even after moving to Germany, a residence permit is granted for family members (subsequent entry). Family members include the spouse and children under 18 years of age. To do this, you must have a permanent settlement permit or a residence permit. You must also have accommodation in Germany which is large enough for you and your family members and have sufficient financial means to be able to care for your family.

In addition, your spouse must have basic knowledge of German (level A1 of the Common European Framework for Languages defined by the Council of Europe). For example, he or she should be capable of introducing himself or herself in German or asking for directions. Information on how to demonstrate basic German-language skills can be found on the websites of the visa offices of the German representative bodies abroad.

The residence permit for family members is temporary and includes a work permit that corresponds in scope to that of the partner living in Germany.


You can find further information in the right-hand column on this page. You can also search there for the immigration authorities responsible for your place of residence in the Stuttgart Region.
The team at the Welcome Center Stuttgart will also be happy to provide further assistance.

In order to be entitled to work here, a residence title must expressly permit the holder to carry out gainful employment. You can find information on this under Working/Work permit.

The Welcome Service Region Stuttgart (WSRS) is an offering by the Stuttgart Region Economic Development Corporation (Wirtschaftsförderung Region Stuttgart GmbH). The project is funded by the Ministry of Economic Affairs, Labour and Tourism Baden-Württemberg.