Global Alerts

The Impact of the CORONA CRISIS on Immigration to Germany

Due to the novel Coronavirus, the EU member states, and Germany have issued a number of protective measures:


  • Touristic Travel within and across the Schengen borders shall be omitted. The Schengen countries thus restricted travel within
    and at the outer borders to necessary border crossings for the next 30 days:
  • Touristic travel is no longer permitted
  • Professional travel for the delivery of goods and services will still be possible.
  • EU nationals, nationals of EFTA countries and Swiss or UK nationals as well as their family members may enter the Schengen Area in order to travel to their home country.
  • Individuals that hold an EU / EFTA / UK / Swiss national visa or residence/settlement permit may cross the borders in order to return to the country that issued the permit.
  •  German missions abroad are known to cancel visa appointments for Schengen Visa as no travel on the basis of Schengen visa will be allowed within the next 30 days.
  • German missions abroad are continuing to issue national visa for employment and family reunion until further notice.
  • We have received no information so far whether Schengen visa with a work permit will allow entering the Schengen Area. If your employees need to travel urgently on the basis of a Schengen visa with work permit, you may try providing them with a letter on company letterhead confirming the necessary nature of this travel.
  • Individuals showing signs of infection may be rejected at the border.
  • Hotels and boardinghouses in Germany must not provide accommodation for tourism purposes. We thus recommend that
    employers provide their foreign personnel with a document on a company letterhead confirming that their need for
    accommodation is strictly job-related if they are currently staying in a hotel or boardinghouse.


Schengen Visa can be extended in case of force majeure. The current corona crisis can be regarded as such. However, many German immigration offices are currently unavailable. The German Federal Government is already working to advise on a solution for this particular problem. Foreign nationals who require to extend their existing Schengen Visa will need to contact their immigration service provider for further guidance.


National permits are by law automatically extended for a preliminary period once an application has been logged before the validity runs out. This legal automatism does not require a preliminary permit (Fiktionsbescheinigung) to be issued. Obtaining evidence that the application has been logged is recommended best practice. Many authorities currently do not receive applications by personal appearance of the applicant but can still be reached by telefax or other suitable technology creating a log report Please contact us for support.


The services of the Labor Authority are still in operation. German missions abroad have limited their service but will still issue visa for employment. Applications related to the delivery of essential services (health related, travel required to ensure basic services such as food, basic infrastructure, etc.) will be prioritized. Please flag applications accordingly if they fall into this category.

This update has been provided by Offer Mastmann, a FGI Alliance Partner

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