Resident permits and employment

More and more people from Ukraine seeking refuge from the war are coming to Germany. We have put together the key facts about staying in Germany.

Arrival in Germany: safe at last
Arrival in Germany: safe at last picture alliance/dpa

What status do refugees have in Germany?

People from Ukraine are given a kind of special status. Though they do not have to apply for asylum, they are nonetheless granted “temporary protection” that includes all social benefits provided for in Section 24 of the Residence Act. This requires them to register with the authorities, after which the protection will be valid for one year and can be extended to three years.

Who is eligible for this residence status?

“Temporary protection” is granted to: 

  • Ukrainian nationals and their family members who resided in Ukraine until 24 February 2022.
  • Nationals of third countries and stateless persons who benefited from international protection in Ukraine and their family members provided that they were residing in Ukraine before or on 24 February 2022.
  • Nationals of third countries and stateless persons who were residing in Ukraine on the basis of a permanent residence permit before or on 24 February and who are unable to return safely to their country of origin. 

Are refugees from Ukraine permitted to work?

A person who applies for or has already been granted a work permit pursuant to Section 24 of the Residence Act is permitted to work or become self-employed. The Agentur für Arbeit (Federal Employment Agency) is the point of contact for all further questions. Its staff will help refugees with finding a job or apprenticeship.

Detailed information about residency and employment, as well as about everyday life in Germany and German courses, can be found here in English, Russian and Ukrainian: https://handbookgermany.de/de/ukraine-info/de.html

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