Applying Studying Institutions Living


  • European Union nationals have the same access to the labour market as German nationals and do not need a work permit.
  • For citizens of EU accession states transitional regulations will remain in place for a few years in some areas (right of domicile and labour law). This means that people in this group will often be subject to the same regulations as citizens of third countries. Information can be found on the European Commission website.
  • International students from so-called third countries are entitled to work or 90 days per calendar year without a work permit. These days can be spread over the entire year and do not have to be in the semester breaks. Under the new immigration law, 90 working days of full-time employment can be split into 180 working days in part-time employment. A half day is classed as a working day on which no more than four hours are worked.
  • Unlimited additional student activities at the institution or another academic institution are possible. The same applies to compulsory placements as part of your course of study.
    Optional placements (paid or unpaid) are counted towards the number of working days permitted.
  • After graduation, nationals of third countries can remain in Germany for up to one year to look for a job related to their qualification. If you have found appropriate work, you can obtain a temporary work and residence permit, which can be extended later. After 5 years of residence and employment in Germany, you can obtain permanent right of domicile.
  • Employment is not permitted while attending a language course.
  • Students attending a preparatory course are normally allowed to work in the semester breaks, provided they have applied for a work permit from the relevant local immigration authority. They are not allowed to work during the semester itself.
  • Non-student foreigners from so-called third countries require a work permit, which is issued in conjunction with the residence permit by the relevant local immigration authority in a single process.
  • Information about labour law rules for accompanying spouses is provided by the Alexander von Humboldt Trust in its brochure for research scholarship holders.
  • The German Students' Union website for international students provides detailed information about "Jobs".
  • General information on labour law, working conditions, student status (from a labour law perspective), rights in case of sickness, holiday (pay) entitlement, Christmas pay and termination can be found at However, this information is not specifically tailored to international students.
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