Au Pair to Student

How can you change your legal residence status from being an au pair to being a student? Prerequisites, documents and application.

From residence as an au pair to residence as a student

(The information shown below does not apply to citizens of the European Union or to nationals of Switzerland, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway.)

For obtaining residence as a student you need to apply for a residence permit for the purpose of

  • Learning German to prepare for later academic studies
  • Attending a state preparatory college
  • Pursuing academic studies

Please note: This application must be submitted in good time, i.e. while your au pair residence permit is still valid.

Important note
When your activity as an au pair comes to an end, you will have to move out of the family home where you have been staying. Due to the difficult housing situation in Munich, you normally have one year in which to do so.

To apply for a residence permit for the purpose of academic studies, you will need the following documents:

  • An application form (PDF, 244 KB) (completed in full)
  • A valid passport
  • A recent biometric passport photograph (photo booths are available at the Foreigners Office)
  • Informal confirmation of the date on which your position as an au pair will terminate
  • Proof of adequate health insurance
  • Proof of adequate funding for at least one year (a formal obligation pursuant to § 68 German Residence Act (AufenthG) or a blocked account with a current balance of at least 8.640 euros)
  • Proof of registration for a German language course with at least 20 contact hours per week, or a certificate of admission from a German university
  • Proof of qualification to study (issued by the university), or the APS certificate (for au pairs from China, Mongolia or Vietnam)

You will be deemed to have adequate funding if you have sufficient monthly resources at your disposal to cover your cost of living. This amount must at least be equal to the federal educational assistance (BAFÖG) rate, which currently stands at 720 euros. Additional income within the framework of permitted gainful employment can be taken into account.

This list is not exhaustive. Additional forms of documentary proof may be required in isolated cases.

Preparation for academic studies
You have up to two years in which to prepare for academic studies after a period of residence as an au pair. Please note: Preparatory measures for academic studies include German language courses, attendance of a state preparatory college and/or a compulsory preliminary internship. Your must then begin your academic studies. It is therefore especially important to observe the requirements for admission to higher education and to heed the application deadlines.

Gainful employment during preparation for academic studies
During your study preparations, you are permitted to engage in gainful employment for 120 days (or 240 half-days) per calendar year. In the first year, this permission is limited to weekends/public holidays during your language tuition, or to vacation periods if you are attending a state preparatory college.

Academic studies
Your residence permit can be renewed for up to two years if the purpose of your stay in Germany has not yet been achieved but can still be achieved within ten years. A reasonable time frame is regarded as the average duration of study plus three semesters.

Gainful employment during your academic studies
During your course of study, you are permitted to engage in gainful employment for 120 days (or 240 half-days) per calendar year, in addition to a part-time student job at a university or public institute of science. Forms of gainful employment that go beyond these limits are not precluded entirely, but can be approved only in exceptional cases. The basic rule is that gainful employment must not impair the course of study.

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