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processing time for the labor office (work permit)

 
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ioamosalerno



Joined: 09 Aug 2011
Posts: 40
Location: Belgium

PostPosted: Tue Oct 18, 2011 4:32 pm    Post subject: processing time for the labor office (work permit) Reply with quote

Hallo!
I am a new freelance teacher for 2 schools in Ratingen and Duisburg. The immigrations office that I go to in Mettmann requested that I send a copy of my Stellenbeschreibung der Agentur fur Arbeit along with the Arbeitsvertrag for each position when I obtain them. I sent a Vereinbarung Uber Freie Mitarbeit (work agreement) along with the posted "position description" which, unfortunately, was only printed in English. My employer in Duisburg sent a Honorarvertrag (work agreement) at the least (as I have a hard copy). Since I wasn't copied on the email, I am not sure what exactly was sent for the other document. The immigrations office told me that my request must be processed by 2 different labor bureaus, as the jobs are in 2 different locations. They also could not give me any estimate of how long it will take to hear back from these office, other than "it could be 2 weeks, or it could be 2 months." Unfortunately, I'm not going to make for another 2 months if I don't start to make some money, so I'm not sure if it is worth it to wait this one out. So does anyone know from recent experience about how long the labor offices take to process freelance work permits?
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spiral78



Joined: 05 Apr 2004
Posts: 9676
Location: On a Short Leash

PostPosted: Tue Oct 18, 2011 5:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'll be surprised if there is any definitive answer for this. In my own experience in the region, processing times really do vary considerably.

Further, you may have complications if you're over (or near) your 90 day time limit in the Schengen zone.

It's unfortunately probably also a bit too late to hop across to the Czech Rep or Poland where non-EU citizens are still also eligible for legal work permits - the peak hiring season will be past and you would need someone to file paperwork on your behalf before the 90 day limit runs out, if you've still got any time left.

Do let us know if and how this works out - your experience could be quite valuable for other non-EU citizens contemplating giving this region a try.
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ioamosalerno



Joined: 09 Aug 2011
Posts: 40
Location: Belgium

PostPosted: Tue Oct 18, 2011 5:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the reply Spiral. The immigrations office has now given me 2 visa extensions. I found a phone number that I'm going to have one of my employers call for the central labor authority. All I can say to new comers is don't try doing this in Belgium unless you already have (some sort) of visa and/or a professional card for foreigner before you come. Germany there is a fighting chance, but the red tape is intense.
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spiral78



Joined: 05 Apr 2004
Posts: 9676
Location: On a Short Leash

PostPosted: Tue Oct 18, 2011 6:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Very good job (and luck) that you were able to get visa extensions!! It would probably be helpful to others if you could post more info on that process (I've never heard of extending the 90-day visitor visa unless one has solid job offers).
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ioamosalerno



Joined: 09 Aug 2011
Posts: 40
Location: Belgium

PostPosted: Tue Oct 18, 2011 9:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

yeah, when I went to get the first extension, I had to bring in a paper from the local registry office where I live with my address (registration of sorts). Then I had a letter of intent, from one employer. Then, the visa office spoke with the other employer on the phone. They also took copies of my credentials, and that was basically it. I had to get another 4 weeks since we are waiting on the labor office. I have heard from everyone else that health insurance is mandatory as well, but since they have yet to mention it, I'm keeping my mouth shut. Although I'm not sure, I believe these visa extensions/issuing of a residency permit (at least initally) can only be done inside of Germany if you are a national of the US, Canada, and a few other select countries. Otherwise, you must do so before you leave for Germany. Nonetheless, the process is not quick, and one of my collegues has already waited 6 weeks simpy becuase the guy at one of the offices does not like her case, and want a British guy to take the job instead....... it's just horrible
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gjj



Joined: 08 Aug 2011
Posts: 13

PostPosted: Thu Oct 20, 2011 6:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Spiral is absolutely right. The very general regulations are interpreted differently according to the office you apply at and the individual official you see.

I spent many years recruiting for a private language school in NRW. Some non-EU teachers were able to get the freelance stamp within five minutes, others needed three months. However, I don't think in all that time anyone was finally rejected.

The only advice I would give you is that if the first official you speak to is uncooperative or doesn't seem to know what he or she is talking about, then go back again and see a different one.

Obviously if you don't speak fluent German, do take a native speaker with you.

Good luck!

GJ
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BenE



Joined: 11 Oct 2008
Posts: 278

PostPosted: Fri Oct 21, 2011 11:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I agree speaking German does help a lot. I've dealt with the Auslandsbehoerde myself though I'm an EU citizen and I speak fluent German and know my rights. Suffice to say my non-EU wife had a residence permit within a week without problems.

You NEED health insurance when you go to the Auslandsbehoerde I'm pretty sure they won't put an Aufenhaltstitel (Residence permit) in your passport without one. If you don't have insurance now you might risk facing back charges if you apply to the Krankenkasse (Public health insurance system) You can also apply using Care Expatriate from care concept AG (Google for the website)
They're a lot cheaper though some offices won't recognise it due to complex laws regarding health insurance here in Germany.
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artemisia



Joined: 04 Nov 2008
Posts: 867
Location: the world

PostPosted: Sat Oct 22, 2011 12:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

What Spiral and gii say correlates with my own experiences with the Auslandsbehoerde in two different regions. Not exactly your situation but when dealing with govt. offices there, speaking German and being EU does not always ensure an easy run of it, unfortunately. They suit themselves how quickly they process applications and they may have a backlog to deal with. Hopefully these regional offices do have more than one official you can go to if there are problems ... Certainly it's better to have someone who speaks the language go along with you, preferably a German.

Maybe things have changed since I was there but I don't recall having to show health insurance details at the beginning. I got an Aufenhaltserlaubnis as a separate booklet. Nothing was ever stamped in my passport concerning residence but then I was EU. Maybe this is different with a non EU passport. At that time it was not possible to apply for public health insurance unless you were an employee. Then it became mandatory and automatic to go with the state system. Your employer applied on your behalf, and contributed payments.

I know your question is not really about health insurance but you've mentioned it. As a freelancer, you're solely responsible for health insurance. I knew plenty of people there without it, which was and is illegal. Whether that's possible to get away with for someone new and non EU, I don't know.. I went without it myself for the last 6 months there as I was fed up with the one I was registered with (DKV). I'd not recommend this though, as although it's expensive, a stay in a hospital there could bankrupt you without insurance.

Poster “Minny” also mentions “care concept” as a cheap option for insurance which can be bought via their website.
http://forums.eslcafe.com/job/viewtopic.php?t=84515

Red tape in Germany, or anywhere, is never any fun but your situation is complicated by coming under two different regional Labour offices. All you can do is keep on their tails. It'd be great if you could keep posting on how you get on, as questions about non EU applying for freelance permits in Germany come up so often.
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