Can I get German citizenship 1

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Type: Article, Main topic: Constitution

If you live permanently in Germany but do not have German citizenship, you can apply for naturalization. To do this, you have to meet certain requirements.

Source: BMI

Naturalization offers you political participation, legal equality and other opportunities for social participation.

Your rights as a German citizen

With naturalization, you become an equal citizen of our country with all rights and obligations as a citizen.

You can then vote in the municipalities, in the federal states and at the federal level. You can also run for political office yourself.

You are free to choose your profession in Germany. In addition, you then belong to the European Union, which means you can enjoy freedom of movement in Europe and can travel to many countries outside of Europe without a visa. With the German citizenship you acquire a number of rights:

  • Universal suffrage
  • Obtaining the so-called basic German rights (Article 8 GG freedom of assembly, Article 9 paragraph 1 GG freedom of association, Article 11 GG freedom of movement, Article 12 GG freedom of occupation)
  • Invalid right of residence
  • Access to civil servant status
  • EU free movement
  • Consular protection abroad
  • Visa exemption in many countries around the world

Naturalization Requirements

Anyone who has lived legally and permanently in Germany for eight years is entitled to naturalization under the following conditions:

  • unlimited or permanent right of residence at the time of naturalization
  • clarified identity and nationality
  • Commitment to the free democratic basic order of the Basic Law
  • basically giving up previous citizenship
  • Oral and written German language skills at level B1 of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages
  • Proof of knowledge of the legal and social order and living conditions in Germany (naturalization test)
  • Independent livelihood security for yourself and your dependents
  • Guarantee of the classification in the German living conditions, in particular no marriage with several spouses at the same time
  • no conviction for a crime
  • 255 euros per person

  • 51 euros for underage children who are naturalized together with their parents

How do I get naturalized?

You have to apply for naturalization. You submit the application to the naturalization authority responsible for your place of residence. For children and adolescents under 16 years of age, parents must submit the application.

Exceptions and exemptions

Exceptions and simplifications are possible in certain cases for the naturalization requirements and the naturalization fees.

Your competent naturalization authority will provide you with information about this and the naturalization process as a whole and advise you individually.

Competent authority

You can find out which authority is responsible for your naturalization from the city or district administration of your place of residence, the immigration office or the migration advice service for adult immigrants or the youth migration services.

Persons permanently living abroad can only be naturalized in exceptional cases. The Federal Office of Administration in Cologne is responsible for them. The first point of contact here can be the locally responsible German diplomatic mission abroad (embassy, ​​consulate general or other consular office).

Naturalization test

The knowledge of the legal and social order and living conditions in Germany required for naturalization is usually proven by a naturalization test.

The test consists of 33 questions, 3 of which are country-specific questions that only need to be answered for the respective federal state in which you live. For each question you have to choose the right one from four possible answers. If you answer at least 17 questions correctly, you have passed the test. In recent years, well over 90% of the participants have passed the test.

Exemption from the naturalization test

You do not have to take a test if you are not yet 16 years old or if you cannot meet the requirements due to illness, disability or age. Also exempt from the naturalization test is anyone who has a German school leaving certificate or who can prove that they have successfully completed a degree at a German university in the fields of law, society, social sciences, political or administrative sciences.

BAMF online test center

Here you can do a trial run of the naturalization test and view the complete catalog of possible questions.

You can fill out a sample test sheet in the online test center of the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees. When you have answered all of the questions, you will see which questions were answered correctly.


to the website

You can then look at the correct solutions with brief background information. You can also edit an interactive questionnaire online. After processing each question, you will be shown the correct answer.

The online test of the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees is free.

Offers on private websites to prepare for the naturalization test are usually chargeable. You should therefore also read the small print at the margin or bottom of the page as well as the provider's general terms and conditions.