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German Law/niederlassungserlaubnis für hochqualifizierte expiry


Dear Andreas,

I came to Germany in Oct 2010. I received a Niederlassungserlaubnis für Hochqualifizierte in June 2012 as I had the required qualifications. I plan to leave Germany for around 15 months and go to the USA. My question is will my NE be valid when I return 15 months later. My NE card is valid for another 3 years.


Hello Arvind,

according to § 51 I no. 7 AufenthG, your Niederlassungserlaubnis will become void if you leave Germany for more than 6 months, unless you ask for prior permission from the Ausländerbehörde for your prolonged leave.

If you have good reasons and you plan to return to Germany at a set time and especially if Germany will benefit from the skills that you will pick up during that absence, then the Ausländerbehörde should grant you the permission (§ 51 IV AufenthG).

The other option is of course to return to Germany every 5 months and stay for a week or two.

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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