On 1 March 2020, the Skilled Worker Immigration Act  will come into force. The law completely opens up the German labour market to skilled workers from countries outside the European Union. In addition to the measures set out in our blog the German legislator has included further measures including an accelerated administrative procedure and more efficient recognition procedures.

  • Accelerated procedures: The employer is able to reduce the official processing time by initiating the procedure himself following an agreement with the competent immigration authority. As soon as all necessary documents are available and the authority consents to entry, the skilled worker will obtain an appointment at the German mission abroad within three weeks of the advance approval and the visa within a further three weeks .
  • Reporting obligations: The employer is obliged to report the early termination of an employment relationship to the competent immigration authority. A breach of this obligation constitutes an administrative offence.
  • Role of the Federal Employment Agency (BA): The agency is granted comprehensive examination rights and can demand information from employers with regard to working conditions, such as working hours and wages.
  • Residence permits: Residence requirements for skilled workers will in future be contained in the Residence Act, and the provisions in the Employment Regulation will no longer apply.
  • Central immigration authorities in the federal states are to be established.

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