Recognition of foreign qualifications


Lupe, © Colorbox


General information

Skilled workers whose foreign qualifications are not (yet) recognized in Germany can take further educational courses to achieve the recognition of their qualification and to take up employment in their field.

This applies primarily to trained doctors without a German professional licence and other occupational groups (pharmacists, psychotherapists, dentists and veterinarians, nurses for the sick or elderly, certain skilled trades, teachers, educators, lawyers ...).

A visa can only be issued if the applicant presents to so-called “Defizitbescheid”. This notification of deficits is issued by the authority that is responsible for the recognition of the qualification and the professional licencing. The notification has to establish that a certain educational measure or examination (occupational/language skills) is required for the recognition of the qualification or the professional licence.

Prepare your application

You should start preparing your application as soon as you have plans for your long-term stay in Germany. Prepare your application according to the following list and submit the documents with 1 copy when applying for a visa:

  • copy of valid passport (including all pages that are not blank)
  • a completed and personally signed national visa application form (please use the online application form VIDEX)
  • 2 recent biometric passport photos (not older than 3 months)
  • Saudi ID or Iqama or Saudi Arabian visa & entry stamp
  • so-called Notification of Deficits (“Defizitbescheid”) from the authority responsible for the recognition of the foreign professional qualification mentioning the adaptation measures required for the recognition or the professional licence
  • admission/confirmation of all educational measures necessary for the recognition or professional licence (e.g. (specific) language course booking, preparatory courses for the assessment test, if necessary signed internship contract, ...)
  • German or foreign university degree
  • if applicable: legalized professional licence from Saudi-Arabia
  • proof of German knowledge, usually at the Level B1
  • proof of financing of the entire stay:
  1. work contract and employment declaration (“Erklärung zum Beschäftigungsverhältnis”) for the period prior to the recognition (including binding confirmation of the employer that all necessary education measures can be concluded at full pay) plus additional declaration (“Zusatzblatt A”) and work contract and detailed job description for period after recognition of foreign qualification or
  2. blocked account at a German bank for 12.324 €/year (2023) or
  3. formal obligation letter according to section 66 to 88 German Residence Act by a person with permanent residence in Germany for the whole study period or
  4. scholarship confirmation
  • personal motivation letter
  • detailed CV including your educational and professional achievements
  • if applicable: current employment letter
  • if applicable: evidence of professional experience corresponding to the qualification
  • visa fee of 75€, to be paid in SAR (cash only)

Before the visa can be issued, the German Mission will request an “Incoming” health insurance valid from the date of entry to Germany.

All documents are to be presented in original or certified copy along with one set of copies.

Foreign documents issued in other languages than English or German have to be submitted with an official translation.

The German Missions reserve the right to request additional documents.

Important notes on the visa procedure

Please do not send unrequested documents to the German Mission, especially not before applying for the visa, as those cannot be kept. Please submit all documents when applying in person at the Mission. Incomplete applications will be rejected or denied.

Foreign public documents need to be duly legalized by the competent German Mission in the issuing country, or, if applicable, provided with an Apostille. For documents from some countries, individual document verification might be necessary, that process would require more time and an additional fee.


The processing of the visa application usually takes at least three months, often longer.

The German Mission decides on your application based on the provided documents. You will be contacted as soon as the application has been decided. Please note that questions regarding the status of your visa application cannot be answered. Due to data protection regulation, no status updates can be given via phone.

Book your appointment

To submit your application, please book an appointment and appear in person at the mission. The German Mission will accept your complete application documents including the visa fee, will conduct a short interview with you and register your biometric data.

Applicants with residence in the provinces of Qasim, al-Mintaqa al-Sharqiya (Eastern Province), Hail, al-Hudud al-Shamaliya (Northern Province), Jouf and Riyadh are kindly requested to book an appointment through the online system of the Embassy in Riyadh.

Applicants with residence in the provinces of Tabuk, Medina, Mekka, Baha, Asir, Najran and Jazan are kindly requested to book an appointment through the online system of the Consulate General in Jeddah.

Additional information

Further information of the Federal Ministry of the Interior, for construction and Homeland.

Additional information of the Federal Employment Agency.

“Make it in Germany”, the welcome page for foreign skilled workers.

“Recognition in Germany”, the Information page of the Federal Government about the recognition of foreign qualifications.

Database of limited professions (in German).

Information page about foreign qualifications ANABIN.

For information on language courses and examinations please see the webpage of the Goethe-Institut Riyadh.

If you have any additional question that has not been answered in this article, you can use the contact form. Please refrain from questions that are explained on this website.


Top of page