Identifying the correct German reference qualification
The reference qualification is the current corresponding German qualification with which the foreign qualification is to be compared. The reference qualification determines whether applicants need to have their qualifications recognized in order to practise the occupation in Germany and which assessment authority is responsible for the case.
Identifying the right reference qualification is therefore the starting point of any recognition procedure. However, this is not always easy since a direct translation of the title of a foreign professional qualification may not be helpful. The more suitable the choice of German qualification in terms of training content and occupational experience, the greater the chance of success in the equivalency review. If several options are available, the competent bodies help the applicants to select the most suitable one. However, you can also assist the applicant in identifying the correct reference qualification.
Finding the competent body
Which chamber is responsible for processing the respective application depends on the selected German reference qualification and on the place of residence of the applicant. With the recognition finder on the Recognition in Germany portal, you can find the competent body in just a few clicks.
Assisting in gathering the documents
The application for professional recognition must be submitted to the competent body directly by the applicant. The exception is the fast-track procedure for skilled workers willing to immigrate from the non-EU countries: In this case the company forwards all documents to the competent Foreigners’ Registration Office with the power of attorney from the skilled worker.
In both cases, you can assist your employees in gathering the documents required for the recognition process and filling out the application form. The paragraphs 5 and 12 of BQFG specify which documents must be submitted for the assessment and recognition of foreign professional qualifications. These include, for example, a curriculum vitae in tabular form and translated credentials. Please bear in mind that the competent body can ask the applicant to provide additional documents if required. Thus, once the application has been submitted it is advisable to ask the competent body whether the documents provided are sufficient.
Using the counselling services
The recognition process can vary in different cases. You should therefore use the existing counselling services, for example the IQ network and your local chambers. You can find out which counselling services are available for companies in or section Contact Points for Companies.
Applicants can find out more about the recognition procedure and possible alternatives at numerous contact points. The counselling search of on the portal Recognition in Germany is helpful in finding personal counselling services.
Be available as a contact person
Once all required documents have been submitted, the recognition procedure will usually be completed within three month but can be extended (once only) in complicated cases. The processing time is reduced to two months for fast-track procedures.
It can be very helpful for the competent body if you are available as a contact person for further questions during the recognition procedure. Since competent body can ask to provide additional documents or the reference German occupation may need to be adjusted after reviewing the documents.
Reading the recognition notification
The result of the recognition process is the recognition notification. You can find out how to understand the results of the recognition process in the section Recognition notification.
If required: assisting in the adaptation qualification
If a partial equivalence of the qualification has been determined, it is possible for the applicant to obtain full equivalency through an adaptation qualification. This can take place in your company, for example. You can find out more in the section Adaptation qualification.