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Irish Citizens working in Germany:
Currently, Germany is eager to find qualified foreign specialists in the areas of engineering, technology, IT, manufacturing, logistics, mathematics, science and healthcare. A skilled worker shortage means Germany is seeking to recruit employees from abroad.

Did you know that:
- There are no restrictions on Irish citizens taking up employment at a German company.
- You do not need a work permit or visa to work in Germany.
- Qualifications or certificates which you obtain from Irish universities and colleges or other accredited bodies are recognised as similar to German qualifications.

Unrestricted Movement in the EU for Employment:
As a Irish citizen and as such a citizen of an EU Member State you are allowed to move freely within the EU for employment purposes. You can easily take up employment in Germany without a work permit or visa. Importantly, as of Februray 2013,  following a new EU directive abolishing the need for residence permits for EU citizens residing in other EU countries - you no longer require a residence permit to live in Germany. 

Important: 
Nevertheless, you are still required to register and confirm your address at the local authorites „Einwohnermeldeamt“ within one week of moving to Germany. 

Good News for EU Labour Force  – The 2013 Abolishment of Residence Permit Rule in EU countries:- As a result of the new EU regulation in 2013, you no longer require a a residence permit called a „Aufentshaltserlaubnis“ or a document stating your freedom of movement called a „Freizügigkeitsbescheinigung“ to live and take up employment in Germany or anywhere else in the EU.

This employee friendly amendment in EU regulation means less bureaucratic proceedings for EU citizens planning to work and live in Germany.

Your German employer will have to keep a copy of the following on record in case of queries from the local authorities:

-     Copy of your passport
-     1 current biometic passport photo
-     Education and Training Certificates
-     Confirmation of Employment Letter (The authorities usually request this as verification that you your earnings cover your living costs.)

What you have to do – Registering on Arrival in Germany:
Go to the „Ausländeramt“ (Immigration Registration Office) at the „Einwohnermeldeamt“ (Local Registration Office) and register that you are residing at your new address. There is a queuing  with ticket system in place for this service. 

It is quite typical of Germany for there to be different departments and office buildings depending on which public service you need to avail of.  Check for the exact address and opening hours of these offices in your city.

Tax, Health Insurance and Pension Obligations for Working in Germany:

Tax Income Card - „Lohnsteuerkarte“:  When you take up employment your German employer will provide you with documentation you need to apply for your Tax Income Card - „Lohnsteuerkarte“:
To obtain this, you will need to go to the „Ausländeramt“ (Immigration Registration Office). Income Tax is paid monthly in Germany, and will be automatically deducted from your gross salary. The amount you pay depends on your earnings. 

Health Insurance – „Gesetzliche Krankenversicherung“: Health insurance is mandatory by law in Germany, and  is linked to and taken out of your gross salary. The rate at present is 14,9%. Your employer will pay half and you, the employee, will pay the other half. The amount will be deducted from your salary and paid into the health insurance scheme.

Most employees in Germany pay their health insurance into of the public health insurance companiy schemes. These tend to give better rates than private insurance companies. Your employer will ask you to decide which insurance company you would like to be registered at. 

Statutory Pension Scheme - „Gesetzliche Rentenversicherung“: All workers must pay into the National Pension Scheme. 19,9% of your gross salary is allocated for this. Your company pays half the amount and you pay the other half. It is also deducted from your monthly pay. 

Germany as a Place of Work for the Irish:
- It  is normally very easy to adapt to a German working environment. Many companies use English as the office language. The very high standard of German courses available means you can learn or improve your German language skills in a short amount of time.

- There is a strong expat community of English native speakers throughout Germany. Clubs often organise evening or weekend events, outings and excursions. Irish pubs in Germany are a much reknowned meeting place for native speakers and Germans alike. 

Germany is a gateway to central Europe, and the public transport service in Germany is very efficient.You can easily access and travel around Germany and other neighbouring European countries.
 

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