What is new about the Specialist Immigration Act?
- a uniform concept of skilled workers, which includes university graduates and employees with qualified vocational training
- the waiving of a priority examination in the case of recognized qualifications and employment contracts
- the abolition of the limitation to shortage occupations for qualified vocational training
- the possibility for skilled workers with qualified vocational training to come to Germany for a limited period of time to look for a job in accordance with the existing regulations for university graduates (prerequisite: German language skills and livelihood security)
- if an audited foreign qualification is available, improved opportunities to stay in Germany for qualification measures with the aim of having professional qualifications recognized, simplification of procedures by bundling responsibilities at central foreigners authorities and accelerated procedures for skilled workers
What is the aim of the Skilled Workers Immigration Act?
The Skilled Workers Immigration Act is intended to create the framework for targeted and increased immigration of qualified skilled workers from Non-EU countries. The aim is to ensure that those skilled workers can come to Germany who companies urgently need against the background of the large demand for personnel and empty applicant markets. These are university graduates and people with qualified vocational training.
Who is a skilled worker within the meaning of the law?
According to the Specialist Immigration Act skilled workers are foreigners who are nationals of third countries and
1. possess a domestic qualified vocational training or a foreign vocational qualification equivalent to a domestic qualified vocational training or
2. have a German university degree, a recognised foreign university degree or a foreign university degree comparable to a German university degree
Does the Specialist Immigration Act also open up the influx of unskilled or low-skilled workers?
No, the Specialist Immigration Act clarifies this before entry, the foreigner's degree is checked for equivalence in the so-called recognition procedure. An exception is only made for IT specialists with at least three years of professional experience and a current monthly salary of at least 4,020 euros, as well as within the framework of placement agreements of the Federal Employment Agency, which checks the level of knowledge of the applicants and determines which qualification measures they still need to have their qualifications recognized. The salary limit is adjusted annually.
What does the abolition of the priority check mean?
In view of the good situation on the labour market, the priority check for qualified employment will be abolished. However, the priority examination will continue to apply vocational trainings as a skilled worker in Germany.
This means that it is no longer necessary to determine whether a domestic or European applicant is available before hiring a skilled worker from a third country. At the same time, the new Immigration of Skilled Workers Act also contains an authorization to issue regulations that allow the priority check to be reintroduced very quickly in the event of a change in the labour market situation - for example, in certain occupations or in certain regions
Less than two weeks before the new Specialist Immigration Act comes into force, the central advisory centre for foreign skilled workers has already opened in Bonn. The employees there advise customers primarily on the recognition of professional qualifications.
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