Recognition of professional qualifications
You want to practise your profession in Germany? Then you should have your professional or academic qualifications recognised! This means that your qualification is compared to Germany’s professional standards and is recognised as being equivalent.
For regulated professions, it is even a prerequisite to obtain recognition of professional or academic qualifications in order to be able to work.
Regulated professions in Germany are health professions (e. g. doctors, nurses), as well as lawyers, teachers and educators.
You have a qualification in a profession that is not regulated? You should still have your qualifications recognised! Having a recognised qualification means you will earn more salary and you will have better promotion and development opportunities
Who can participate in the recognition procedure?
Essentially, everyone can go through the recognition procedure. The prerequisite is to have a professional or academic qualification that was acquired abroad.
Who is responsible for the recognition of professional qualifications?
Depending on your qualification, there are different authorities responsible for the recognition of your studies:
- Doctors: the Lower Saxony Association for the Granting of Licences to Practise (Niedersächsische Zweckverband zur Approbationserteilung, NiZzA)
- Teachers: Ministry of Education and Cultural Affairs (Kultusministerium)
- Engineers: Chamber of Engineers (Ingenieurkammer)
- Pharmacists: Chamber of Pharmacists (Apothekerkammer)
- Veterinary surgeons: Chamber of Veterinary Surgeons (Tierärztekammer)
How long does the recognition process take?
Generally, the process lasts up to three months. In difficult cases it can take longer. The time limit starts after all the required documents have been submitted
Who bears the costs?
If you are registered at the Federal Agency of Employment or at a job centre, you can ask about the coverage of the costs there. Otherwise, you have to bear the costs yourself.
The Chamber of Engineers allows bearing the title of engineer acquired abroad. The only exception is in the case of ethnic German resettlers.
Good to know:
The outcome of the recognition of professional qualifications depends on the type of professional or academic qualifications you have. Not only do the recognised authorities responsible for the procedure differ, the required documents and certificates do also. This is why they have to be requested individually for each procedure. Aspects like in what year was the qualification acquired or if the applicant can provide proof of having professional experience can be of significance. Additionally, there are individual cases with exceptions, e. g. for ethnic German resettlers.
You can find more information on the website “Anerkennung in Deutschland”
Information Centres in Niedersachsen
Address: IHK Lüneburg-Wolfsburg, Geschäftsstelle Celle – Sägemühlenstraße 5, 29221 Celle
Address: Caritasverband für Bremerhaven und den Landkreis Cuxhaven e.V. – Grodener Chaussee 21, 27472 Cuxhaven
Anerkennungsberatung IHK Hannover
Industrie- und Handelskammer Hannover
Address: Schiffgraben 49, 30175 Hannover
Mo. – Do. 8.00 – 16.00 Uhr und Fr. 8.00 – 14.00 Uhr
Anerkennungs- und Qualifizierungsberatung Hannover
mit den Außenstellen in Nienburg, Hildesheim, Hameln-Pyrmont, Diepholz, Braunschweig, Holzminden, Peine und Schaumburg
Address: IHK Hannover – Schiffgraben 49, 30175 Hannover
Contact person: Ilyas Isa
Telephone: 0511 / 3107-521
Contact person: Maike Jakusch
Telephone: 0511 / 3107-293
Contact person: Walter Kawsu Ceesay
Telephone: 0511 / 3107-515
Address: Zentrum für Arbeit, Jobcenter Leer – Bavinkstr. 23, 26789 Leer
Address: Landkreis Emsland, Jobcenter des Landkreises – FB Arbeit – Riedemannstr. 1, 49716 Meppen
Address: Jobcenter Grafschaft Bentheim – Stadtring 9-15 (Eingang: Ootmarsumer Weg), 48527 Nordhorn
Address: BNW Information Center – Raiffeisenstraße 24, 26122 Oldenburg
Address: Arbeit im Landkreis Verden – Lindhooper Str. 67, 27283 Verden (Aller)