What are the requirements for issuing a work visa?

The professional qualification in the field of nursing or elderly care must be recognized in Germany or be comparable to a German educational qualification.
A nursing profession is a state-regulated profession. A work permit is therefore mandatory.
For the procedure of the approval procedure, see under approval procedure.
A specific job offer from an employer in Germany is a prerequisite for the issuance of a work visa. It is necessary that the recognized qualification enables the visa applicant to work in the field of care for the elderly or nursing. This means that employment in related professions is possible.
In the event that the applicant is older than 45 and is entering Germany for the first time for the purpose of employment, the desired activity in Germany must achieve a gross annual salary of at least 45,540 euros (in 2020) or an adequate pension be detected.

The Federal Employment Agency (BA) must in principle consent to the planned employment. Here it is checked, among other things, whether the employment conditions (salary, working hours, etc.) are comparable to those of domestic employees

The visa or residence permit to take up qualified employment in the field of geriatric care or nursing is issued for a maximum of four years. If the employment contract is limited to a shorter period, the residence permit is issued for this shorter period.
If you have a residence permit for four years to work, you can apply for a settlement permit. It is a permanent residence permit.
A family reunification can also be applied for with a residence permit.


Third-country nationals who want to come to Germany to work as a nurse require a visa to enter the country. A prerequisite for a visa is the recognition of your nursing training acquired abroad.

If the recognition process has already been carried out and the responsible body has identified significant differences between the current nursing training in the third country and the nursing training in Germany, a visa for a qualification measure in Germany can be applied for.

The recognition procedure regarding the equivalence of vocational training in nursing and the visa procedure are separate procedures. You have to apply for both procedures.

Summary visa application

Apply for a visa in the country of residence
– Bring full documents
– Fees: € 75 (in local currency)
Processing time between a few days and a few weeks or months