Information about subsequent immigration of spouses


If a foreign spouse wants to come and permanently stay with their partner who lives in Germany, but the foreign spouse is not a citizen of an EU Member State or is not married to a citizen of an EU Member State, they must provide evidence that they have at least a basic command of the German language. This obligation to prove basic language skills when applying for a visa exists regardless of whether their spouse in Germany is a German citizen or not. Having a command of the German language will make it easier for them to participate in German society from the outset.

You can find out more about what is meant by “basic knowledge” in the lea et “Evidence of basic knowledge of the German language in the event of the subsequent immigration of spouses from abroad” available to order or download from the website of the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees at


There are some exceptions to this requirement, including cases where:

  • The foreign spouse resident in Germany is employed as a researcher or highly-skilled worker and the marriage took place before they entered Germany.
  • The spouse resident in Germany is the holder of an EU Blue Card.
  • The spouse resident in Germany can enter and work in a Germany for a longer-term residence without a visa.
  • If its obvious that there is little need for integration (usually if they have a degree).
  • The spouse seeking to enter Germany is incapable of demonstrating basic knowledge of the German language due to a physical, psycho- logical or mental illness or disability.