Family reunion with a spouse (German or non-EU national)


General information

To protect marriage and family, spouses or registered partners have the opportunity to move to Germany to join their spouse.

A visa for family reunion with a spouse can be applied for if the spouse is already resident in Germany or if the spouses intend to move to Germany together and will be living together.

Canadian citizens as well as citizens of Australia, Israel, Japan, New Zealand, Korea, the United Kingdom and the United States of America can apply for a residence permit after entering Germany at the local immigration authority, without applying for a visa beforehand.

Processing of the visa application in Canada can take several months, depending on approval from German authorities.

Please note that civil partnerships/ common-law partnerships are not recognised under the family reunion category!

Necessary documents

Please do not staple the documents!

  • Completed and signed application form:
    Please fill out the online application (VIDEX) form, print it out, sign it and submit it along with the other documents. Please ensure that the barcode is printed in high quality.
  • Printed and signed Declaration Use of Mail Services
  • Printed and signed Visa Declaration
  • Valid national passport (issued within the last 10 years and valid for at least 6 months from the intended arrival in Germany, with 2 subsequent blank pages) - original plus 1 copy of the data page
  • Recent biometrical passport photograph, stamped (35 x 45 mm, front facial view, white background, not older than 3 months). Digitally altered pictures will not be accepted. - please do not attach the photo to the application form
  • For non-Canadian citizens: Proof of Canadian residence permit, e.g. PR card, work/study permit - original plus 1 copy of the data page
  • Prepaid self-addressed Xpresspost envelope (Canada Post only), Regional standard to Ontario or National standard to all other provinces (shipment to a Canadian address only). Please note that the German Missions will not be held responsible for any loss or damage of passports due to postal or courier service delivery.
  • Proof of housing, e.g. hotel/hostel/AirBnB (min. for the first week) with full address
  • To be provided prior to final approval of the visa application:

    Proof of sufficient health/travel insurance coverage valid in Germany (including details about coverage: at least € 30,000 and including repatriation costs. Please highlight relevant passages in the insurance terms and print only the relevant pages)

  • Visa fee: see here

  • Your marriage certificate - original plus 1 copy or 1 certified copy
  • Passport of your spouse (if applicable: including his/her German residence permit) - original plus 1 copy or 1 certified copy
  • Evidence of registration of your spouse (“Meldebescheinigung”), if applicable
  • Proof of basic German language skills
    • e.g. standard language test “Deutsch 1” of the Goethe Institut.
    • This is also applicable for applicants who are married to a German national.
    • There are some exemptions for the proof of basic German language skills. For more information see the flyer from the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees

Please note that all documents other than in German or English must be translated into German language.

Incomplete application may result in the rejection of your application. You might have to come again for a new appointment.

Please note that you may be asked to present additional documents. Submission of the required documents does not guarantee that a visa will be granted.

  • If your spouse and/or children are going to accompany you, you must submit a complete set of application documents for each family member. Please provide the original and one copy of the marriage certificate and the children's birth certificate.
  • Upon your arrival the border authorities may examine whether the requirements for your entry continue to be valid. Entry may be refused by the border authorities although you are in possession of a valid visa. We advise you to carry with you documents giving evidence to the purpose of your stay.
  • Once you have obtained your visa please check carefully that all entries are correct and in accordance with your application. Please inform the visa section immediately if there are any mistakes.
  • Your entry visa will allow you to travel within the Schengen area. However please be aware that you will be still subject to the 90 days within 180 days rule outside of Germany.

All Canadian residents need to apply at the Consulate General in Toronto in person. You will have to prepare all the necessary documents (see above) and book an appointment online.

Checking the authenticity of your submitted documents is part of the processing of your visa application. Foreign certificates are often only recognized by the German authorities or courts if their authenticity has been verified in a special procedure.

The authenticity of public certificates is verified by affixing an apostille, legalization or a document verification procedure.

You can simplify and speed up the visa procedure if you present all official certificates in the appropriate form when submitting your application. This can avoid inquiries from the responsible foreigners authority as well as longer processing times in individual cases.

Please refer to the website of the German diplomatic mission in the country in which the document was issued for information on the relevant procedure.

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