The German government introduced new rules governing how foreign nationals can obtain an EU Blue Card.

Key Points:

  • The European Union issued a directive in 2021 that updated the existing EU Blue Card process, and Germany’s new rules are intended to comply with that directive.
  • The new rules update key provisions, including:
    • Salary thresholds in regular occupations and bottleneck professions will be significantly lowered.
    • Wider eligibility, including foreign nationals who have graduated from a university within the last three years and IT specialists who can prove that they have at least three years of comparable professional experience.
    • The list of bottleneck professions for the EU Blue Card will be expanded.
    • Other key updates include facilitating greater family reunification, improved long-term mobility options and increased short-term mobility options.

Background: The new Skilled Workers Immigration Act was published on Aug. 18. The new immigration initiatives are designed to make it easier for skilled workers to live and work in Germany. The new law has several parts. Beginning Nov. 2023, provisions began to be phased in and further regulations will come into force in March 2024. With the new law, existing mechanisms for skilled workers will be improved and extended.

BAL Analysis: The German legislature is implementing the requirements of Directive (EU) 2021/1883 to restructure and widen the migration possibilities with an EU Blue Card. The 2021 EU directive gave EU member states until Nov. 18, 2023, to implement the upgrades for those countries that opted in. The complete list of countries that have updated their requirements can be found here.

This alert has been provided by the BAL Global Practice Group.

Copyright © 2024 Berry Appleman & Leiden LLP. All rights reserved. Reprinting or digital redistribution to the public is permitted only with the express written permission of Berry Appleman & Leiden LLP. For inquiries, please contact