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German Law/Sponsorship for Sister



I am living in Pakistan and my brother in law is German national and living in near Dusseldorf Germany.

My question is could my brother in law sponsor me and my wife (his  sister) for immigration or visit visa to Germany?

Your reply will be highly appreciated.

Thanks for your co-operation.

Mumtaz Ahmed

ANSWER: Hello Mumtaz,

under normal conditions, it is only possible to sponsor spouses and children to move to Germany.
For other relatives, very special circumstances (like medical care) need to apply.

For a visit (Schengen visa), your relatives in Germany can however issue the invitation. They have to go to the local immigration office and sign a "Verpflichtungserklärung". By that, they confirm that they will cover the expenses for your trip and they will also become liable to cover any expenses in case you overstay your visa.

Andreas Moser

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Sir my following question is:

If my brother in law sign a Verpflichtungserklarung and I got a visit (Schengen visa) for Germany. During the stay in Germany if I got a Job or Job offer letter by the employer in Germany then could I get a work visa or immigration???

You cannot change the Schengen visa into a work/residence permit.

So, if you receive a job offer during your stay in Germany, you would need to apply for the work/residence permit at the German Embassy in your home country or country of residence. Of course you could already start the process while you are in Germany and you could somebody else (e.g. your lawyer) instruct with the filing of the visa application in your home country. But because the process usually takes several months and because the Embassy will at one point ask for your original passport, it is almost never possible to complete the application for the work/residence permit while you are still on the Schengen visa. (It's theoretically possible if you have two passports and if everything goes really quick.)

But of course you can use the time on your tourist visa to meet with potential employers.

I wish you all the best!

Andreas Moser

German Law

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Andreas Moser


Extensive experience in international family law, especially international child abductions and child custody cases. All other areas of German law as well: constitutional law, criminal law, business and contract law, immigration law, inheritance law, and so on.


Lawyer in Germany from 2002 to 2009. Lawyer for US Army JAG Corps before. Bar-certified specialisation in family law and in administrative law. Articles and lectures about international and domestic family law.


2000 Law Degree from University of Regensburg, Germany 2002 admitted to the bar (until 2009) 2013 MA Philosophy at the Open University, UK

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