Residence title for self-employment by establishing a limited liability company


Company foundation in Germany by foreigners from non-EU countries
- 10 steps to the residence permit

- 10个步骤,以居住证

One way to the residence title is the self-employed activity. How this is achieved and what needs to be observed will be summarized in ten steps.


  1. Application for a national visa at the respective German embassy (in the home country) to start a self-employed activity in the country of origin before the entry.
  2. Entry into Germany with the correct visa to initiate an economic activity as self-employed- Alternatively: Forming of a limited liability company by a trust person in Germany
  3. After the entry: Application for prolongation of a residence permit limited to 1 to 3 years according to § 21 AufenthG through a personal visit at the Foreigners Department as well as by submitting the following documents:
    输入后: 应用延长居留许可限期为1至3年根据§21 AufenthG 个人访问期间在外国人权威以及提交以下文件
    • health insurance cover (special insurance solution)
    • notarial operational agreement, business plan, financing plan, earnings forecast, CV, proof of professional qualification, certificate of formation, list of shareholders, registration /entry into the commercial register
    • from the age of 45: proof of payment into a national pension scheme or private pension insurance - sufficient reserve for age is required
      从45岁:付款凭证成为全国养老金计划和私人养老保险 - 要求年龄足够的储备
    • rental contract - location
      房屋租赁合同 - 位置
  4. The Foreigners Department will then ask the local Chamber of Industry and Commerce (IHK) to comment on the overall project on the basis of the business plan.
    The company founder will be asked by the Chamber of Industry and Commerce to issue a capital and financing plan, a business plan and to disclose his entrepreneurial experience, the impact of his newly founded business on the training and employment situation and its contribution to innovation and research. The Foreigner’s Registration Office will request the IHK's opinion on the business idea and will include it into the decision process concerning the residence permit but will not be bound by it.


  5. Foundation of the limited liability company
    • Registration at the local residential registration office (not necessarily at the registered office of the company)
    • Compilation of the operating agreement and its notarial certification together with the preparation of the Memorandum of Association and the list of shareholders
    • Registration at the Chamber of Industry and Commerce (IHK) at the registered office of the company
    • Account opening with an initial contribution of at least € 12,500 at the registered office of the company, preferably through a personal consultation with the bank (due to the prevention of money laundering act , the banks have been subject to strict requirements regarding the customer verification).
    • Application for a business account. Here, the prevention of money laundering act is an issue as well as special requirements of the Bafin for the account registration made by foreigners
      商业账户申请. 防止洗钱是一个问题,是外国人登记的特殊要求
    • Application for registration with the Commercial Register
  6. Registration with the tax office at the registered office of the company, listing the account opening, the company management and, where appropriate, the shareholders.
  7. Examination of the exemption from the pension scheme
  8. Business registration at the competent trade office
  9. At the earliest, after three years of successful activity, a permanent residence permit may be issued upon request at the Foreigner’s Registration Office.
  10. Reunification of family members etc..