What do you need to do to start working in Germany?

Last update: 24th Apr 2024
Published: 23rd May 2023

Starting work in Germany is not without official and other formalities. Here's an overview of what you need to arrange and what you'll need to prepare.


Securing housing in Germany is very important, as without an address you will not be able to deal with other matters such as registering for residency, health insurance or opening a bank account.

Registration of residence/Meldebescheinigung

Once you have entered the country and have secured housing, you must register within 14 days at the registration office of the relevant city. You will need the following documents to register:

  • the registration form (available from the office),
  • your identity card or passport,
  • a copy of your employment contract,
  • a copy of your tenancy agreement or a certificate from your accommodation provider.

The registration office will then issue you with a Registration Confirmation form, which will be used to prove your address in Germany.

You can also claim your housing expenses on your tax return.

Tax number/Steuer ID

The German tax authorities will automatically assign you a tax identification number/Steuer ID when you register your residence. It is important to give this number to your employer so that he can pay the tax on your behalf.

Health insurance

Your employer will ask you to tell him which health insurance company you are registered with so that he can then make advance payments for health insurance.

You can find out more about health and social insurance in the article Working in Germany from A to Z.

Setting up a bank account in Germany

To open or not to open a bank account in Germany? While it is not compulsory to open a bank account in Germany, it is worth considering. If you use a home account abroad, you are unlikely to avoid bank charges, such as card fees abroad, cash withdrawals abroad, or fees for transferring money from abroad. Of course, this depends on the type of bank and the type of package for your account. If you decide to open an account in Germany, most German banks allow you to open an account online or without visiting the bank in person.

Read also:

Work in Germany from A to Z

Have you found a job in Germany or are you just thinking about it? What should you know before travelling to Germany for work?

Work in Germany from A to Z

Important: Make sure to check or prepare the following documents before you go to Germany:

  • make sure you have a valid passport or ID card,
  • check the validity of your driving licence (EU driving licences with unlimited validity are accepted in all EU countries),
  • have copies of your documents ready (OP/passport, diplomas/certificates, certificates),
  • criminal record extract/statement if required by your employer,
  • CV in German.
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