Bringing Parents To Germany, A Complete Guide
There are many reasons why Nigerians living abroad want their loved ones to come to stay with them. Living away from family generally is a difficult choice to make for many. And for some Nigerians, it’s not a choice at all. Many have in their quest for a better life migrated to Germany, either permanently or temporarily.
These Nigerians live daily with feelings of worry and guilt, aware that their loved ones may not be getting the best of attention and care.
There are basically three ways to get your parents into Germany, and they shall be discussed broadly:
Guide on Bringing parents to Germany
- Family reunion visa/dependent visa:
Countries in Europe, including Germany, allow residents to bring their spouses and children to live with them. But, bringing parents to Germany is a different kettle of fish entirely.
It’s much easier if the parent is joining a minor who’s legally living in Germany, and the parent possesses the right to care and custody of the child. To bring in your spouse or children, you just need a dependent visa or a German family reunion visa from the German embassy.
But, you can’t bring in your parents on a dependent visa, as they are not considered dependent in the real sense of it. German law does not honor the notion that children support their parents in person.
Even though parents are not part of those whom the family reunion visa is made for, there are strict exemptions that can present a window to bring them into Germany. However, this isn’t easy and might require an experienced immigration lawyer or consultant to help with the process.
To bring your parents into Germany, the embassy will first require proof that “unavoidable hardship” will be prevented. For example, you will be required to prove that living conditions are unexceptionally hard for them in Nigeria, showing their medical report, if they have severe health conditions.
In this case, the Alien’s Department has to use their discretion, margin of judgment, as to whether they concur to the reunification of families, which they rarely use. Furthermore, for this waiver to be granted, other conditions must be in place such as:
- You must be able to get private health insurance for the visiting parent(s).
- You must show proof of financial resources to cater for an added dependent.
- It would be best if you had the right apartment to accommodate yourself and any joining relative.
As previously stated, this waiver is rarely used. German society does not know and does not want to introduce the way families live together in other parts of the world. The social benefits system of over 200 years has almost eclipsed the family support system.
It must be emphasized that it is only if and when this waiver is granted that other requirements and processes in the family reunification visa can be followed.
- Tourist and visitor visa:
If you intend for your parents to spend some time with you, the tourist visa remains the most relaxed and best approach. It’s also called a Schengen tourism visa as it gives you access to 26 other Schengen member countries. With a tourist visa, your parents will not be permitted to work or study.
The tourist visa or short-stay visa can be valid for 90 days within a 180 day period in Germany and the entire Schengen area. To make the process as simple as possible, you might need to send an invitation letter, which should include the address in Germany, the period of stay, and contact details of the host.
A letter of sponsorship also called the Declaration of Commitment, should also accompany the application process. You can start the online application here.
- Investor visa:
This is available to the very rich and wealthy. It is a perfectly legal approach where you invest in the country, and you are allowed to move into the country.
Although, Germany does not officially offer a citizen by investment (CBI) program like most western countries, its investor visa program recognizes the substantial investment in real estate or other businesses with the capacity to create jobs. In return, the investor is granted a temporary visa, which can lead to permanent residency after three years, and remaining family members can get a residency permit after five years.