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First steps after arrival

Where and when do I need to register my residency?

Anyone living in Germany longer than three months is legally required to register their residency within 14 days of arrival. Registration is also a precondition for many other services, like health insurance, a bank account, internet service, etc.


You can register your residency at one of the six Bürgerbüro locations in Munich with an appointment. You can download and complete the forms in advance.


Please note that you will require your landlord’s written confirmation that you are a tenant (Wohnungsgeberbestätigung).

How do I apply for a residence permit?

Non-EU Citizens must apply for their residence permit at the local Munich Foreigners’ Office within the Kreisverwaltungsreferat (KVR) in Munich. The Service-Center für internationale Fachkräfte is in charge of issuing your residence permit.


Please apply for your residence permit as soon as possible after your arrival. Time limits apply depending on the country. You may be able to apply online through their website, which is inexplicably only in German.


Before applying for a residence permit (Aufenthaltstitel), you need to obtain proof of your residence registration (Meldebescheinigung).


Please note that if you move to a suburb of Munich, the local city hall (Rathaus) will be in charge of residence registration and the local district office (Landratsamt) will be in charge of issuing the relevant residence permit instead of the KVR, which is responsible within the city limits of Munich.


Residence permit checklist:


  • Your completed form Antrag auf Erteilung bzw. Verlängerung eines Aufenthaltstitels
  • Your valid passport
  • A valid entry visa for the purpose of research (if required)
  • Curriculum Vitae, including a list of publications
  • One biometric passport photo (a photo booth is located in the lobby of the foreign residents’ bureau, and there is a professional photographer across the street)
  • Your contract with global dis:connect (provides both proof of reason for visit as well as proof of financial support (Finanzierungsnachweis))
  • Confirmation from your landlord of your tenancy status (Wohnungsgeberbestätigunga template is available here). Note that your landlord is legally obligated to provide you with such confirmation.
  • Proof of health insurance (must be German if the stay exceeds 6 months)
  • Proof of residence registration


If accompanied by family members, please also bring the following:


  • Proof of adequately-sized (minimum of 12m² per person) living space in Munich (rental agreement including the area of the living quarters or an equivalent confirmation from the landlord) when applying for the residence permit for your spouse and other family members
  • Proof of travel or health insurance
  • Notarised marriage certificate
  • Notarised children’s birth certificates
  • Proof of income sufficient to provide for your family

Does the foreign residence office accept copies rather than originals?

Yes, but the copies must be notarised, and if they are in a language other than German or English, you will require a notarised translation.

Do I need a work permit?

Our fellows (thankfully) do not require work permits for their activity at gd:c.

How can I obtain mandatory health insurance?

As a fellow at gd:c, you are exempt from regular social security payments, but this exemption also leaves you without compulsory health insurance coverage. As a result, all fellows must obtain health insurance for themselves and any accompanying family members for the duration of their stay.

Without an employment contract, you are not normally eligible for public health insurance and have to procure private health insurance. In general, the minimum contract term with private health insurers is 18 or 24 months, though a number of insurers offer packages for shorter periods, especially for visiting fellows. Please check directly with the insurance companies and authorities whether your coverage is sufficient for your visa and residence permit.

It may be that your health insurance provider in your home country will cover your medical and hospital costs in Germany. If this is the case, you will need a written confirmation of such coverage for the duration of your stay.


Click HERE for further guidance on what kind of insurance you might need and how to get it.


Please also note that the social-security exemption also prevents you from drawing any benefits from the system (e.g. a state pension, unemployment benefits, maternity/paternity leave, etc.).

Do I need private liability insurance?

While not mandatory, third-party private liability insurance (Haftpflichtversicherung) is advisable and ubiquitous in Germany. It covers damages for which a German court might find you liable (e.g. sitting on a friend’s glasses, your child scratching a car, causing an accident while riding a bicycle, etc.).


German law does not limit the damages for which individuals can be responsible that ensue from their acts, even damages resulting from good or innocent intentions. Moreover, many rental contracts and lease agreements require it.


Private liability insurance is also inexpensive. Ten million euros in coverage might cost around 10-20€ per month.