What do families do together
For stays of up to six months, third-country nationals who require a visa do not need to apply for a residence permit, but for a visa.
Who are family members?
Are family members within the meaning of the Settlement and Residence Act
- registered partners
- unmarried underage children including adoptive children or stepchildren
Spouses and registered partners must have already reached the age of 21 at the time of submitting the application.
What residence permit do family members receive?
Red-White-Red - Card plus
Family members of
- People who have a Red-White-Red Card or an EU Blue Card
- Third-country nationals permanently resident in Austria
- Holders of a Red-White-Red Card plus,
- Holders of a permanent residence permit for self-employed key workers,
- Holders of certain cases of the "Settlement Permit - Special Cases of Gainful Employment",
- Holders of a "Settlement Permit - Researcher"
- Persons entitled to asylum if family reunification is out of the question under the Asylum Act
- Holders of a residence card or permanent residence card or
- Holders of a residence permit "Article 50 TEU".
can receive the residence permit Red-White-Red - Card plus if they meet the general requirements. A quota place for family reunification may be required.
With the residence permit "Red-White-Red - Card plus" you have unrestricted access to the labor market. This means that you do not need a further permit in accordance with the Aliens Employment Act for gainful employment.
You can find more information about the Red-White-Red Card plus here.
Family members of Austrians receive the residence title “family members” if they meet the general conditions for granting it.
"Settlement Permit - Relatives"
Other relatives of Austrians receive the residence permit "Settlement Permit - Relatives" if they meet the general requirements for granting and if the person who is already settled in Austria, to whom the third-country national refers in his / her application, submits a declaration of liability.
Other relatives are:
- Relatives of the sponsor or their spouse in a straight ascending line (e.g. parents, in-laws and grandparents), provided they actually provide maintenance
- Life partners who can prove the existence of a permanent relationship in the country of origin if they are actually provided with maintenance
- other relatives under certain conditions
Family members of
- Holders of a "settlement permit",
- Holders of a "permanent residence permit - relatives",
- Holders of a "Settlement Permit - Artist" or
- Holders of certain cases of the "Settlement Permit - Special Cases of Gainful Employment"
receive a permanent residence permit if a quota place is available and the general conditions for granting it are met.
Spouses or other relatives of EEA citizens or Swiss citizens also receive a permanent residence permit if the sponsor submits a declaration of liability and the general conditions for granting it (with the exception of proof of customary accommodation) are met. No quota space is required for these people.
The issuing of residence permits to family members of holders of a “Red-White-Red Card” or an “EU Blue Card” and to family members of Austrians and researchers is not limited. The number of other residence permits that may be issued annually as part of family reunification is limited by a quota.
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General conditions for issuance
The following requirements must be met for each residence permit to be issued:
- Sufficient means of subsistence:
Third-country nationals must have a steady and regular income that enables them to lead a life without receiving public welfare benefits.
The amount of this income must correspond to certain benchmarks. The reference rates for 2021 are € 1,000.48 for single persons, € 1,578.36 for married couples and an additional € 154.37 for each child.
- Health insurance coverage:
Third-country nationals must have health insurance that provides services in Austria and covers all risks.
Family members of holders of a Red-White-Red Card or an EU Blue Card and family members of Austrians are usually insured with them in the statutory health insurance.
- Local accommodation:
Third-country nationals must prove a legal right to accommodation (e.g. by submitting a rental agreement). This accommodation must be customary for a similarly large family. In order to be granted a permanent residence permit for life partners or other relatives of EEA citizens or Swiss citizens, no proof of accommodation is required.
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Proof of German language skills ("German before immigration")
When applying for the following residence permits for the first time, family members must provide evidence of German language skills at A1 level of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages:
- "Red-White-Red - Card plus"
- "Family member"
- "Settlement Permit - Relatives"
- "Settlement Permit"
- "Settlement permit - excluding gainful employment"
The required knowledge is elementary knowledge of German at the simplest level.
Proof of German language skills can be provided by submitting a generally recognized language diploma from the following institutions:
- Austrian language diploma for German
- Goethe Institute e.V.
- Telc GmbH
- Austrian Integration Fund (ÖIF)
If a person fulfills the requirements of module 1 or 2 of the integration agreement, this is also valid as proof.
The language diploma must not be older than one year at the time of submission.
Proof of corresponding knowledge of German must be provided by the following personsNotare provided:
- People who have not yet reached the age of 14 at the time of submitting the application.
- Persons who cannot be expected to provide evidence due to their physical or psychological state of health. The person concerned must prove this by means of an opinion from an official doctor or another doctor (embassy or consulate) appointed by the Austrian representative authorities.
- Family members of holders of the residence permit "Red-White-Red - Card" for "particularly highly qualified", the residence permit "EU Blue Card" or the "Settlement Permit - Researcher".
- Family members of holders of the residence title "Permanent Residence - EU" if the sponsor originally held a "Red-White-Red Card", an "EU Blue Card" or a "Settlement Permit - Researcher".
- Family members of persons entitled to asylum.
- Persons who declare in writing that their stay should not exceed 24 months within 3 years and who irrevocably waive the submission of a further application for extension after the first application for extension.
In the first instance, the governor or the authorized district administrative authorities (district authorities or magistrates) are responsible for the matter. The local jurisdiction depends on the (intended) place of residence of the third-country nationals.
The locally competent regional administrative court decides on complaints against decisions of the governor or the district administrative authorities.
The authority must decide on applications no later than six months after they have been received.
In principle, initial applications for a residence permit must be submitted to the competent Austrian representative authority (embassy or certain consulates) abroad. The responsibility of the representation authority depends on the place of residence of the applicant.
The representative authority abroad checks the submitted application for completeness and correctness and forwards it to the responsible district administration or the responsible magistrate.
The following family members can also apply in Germany:
- Persons who are entitled to visa-free entry after legal entry and during their legal stay;
- Family members of Austrians after legal entry during their legal stay;
- Children within six months of birth if the sponsor has a valid residence permit;
- Family members of holders of a "settlement permit - researcher" after legal entry and during their legal stay.
- People who apply for a “settlement permit” as a life partner or other relatives of EEA citizens or Swiss citizens after legal entry during their legal stay
In principle, an application in Germany does not give you the right to stay beyond the permitted visa-free or visa-required stay. After the permitted stay has expired, it is therefore necessary to leave the country and await the procedure abroad.
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Scope of authorization and period of validity
The “Red-White-Red - Card plus” and the “Family Member” residence permit entitle the holder to temporary settlement and unrestricted access to the labor market.
The "Settlement Permit" entitles you to a temporary settlement and only allows you to be self-employed.
The "Settlement Permit - Except Employment" and the "Settlement Permit - Relatives" entitle you to a temporary settlement without exercising any gainful activity.
In principle, residence permits are issued for a period of twelve months.
The residence permits are issued for a period of three years if
- the family member has completed module 1 of the integration agreement and
- has consistently been legally resident in Austria for the past two years.
After five years of continuous and legal residence, the residence title “permanent residence - EU” can be applied for if the general conditions for granting and module 2 of the integration agreement are met.
For family members of holders of an EU Blue Card, the period of validity of the Red-White-Red Card plus is based on the residence title of the sponsor.
The following documents in particular must be submitted for the issuance of the residence permit:
- valid Travel document (This requirement does not apply when a child applies for the first time within six months of the birth if the child does not yet have a valid travel document.)
- Birth certificate or a corresponding document recognized by Austria (only for initial applications)
- Current Photograph of the applicant
- if necessary:
- marriage certificate
- Divorce certificate
- Partnership certificate
- Certificate of dissolution of the registered partnership
- Certificate of adoption
- Proof or certificate of family relationship
- Death certificate
- Proof of legal entitlement to customary accommodation, in particular rental or sublease agreements, pre-existing contracts or proof of ownership
- proofvia one who is liable to pay benefits in Austria and covers all risksHealth insurance coverage, in particular through a corresponding insurance policy, provided that no case of statutory compulsory insurance will or does not exist
- Proof of secure livelihood (Payslips, wage confirmations, service contracts, confirmations of pension, annuity or other insurance benefits, proof of investment capital or own assets in sufficient amount)
Note: Proof of social benefits to which an entitlement would only arise once the residence permit was issued, in particular social assistance benefits or the equalization allowance, are not suitable.
- Proof that the sponsor has an appropriate residence permit
- Proof of knowledge of the German language
At the request of the authority, further documents may also have to be submitted.
For example, many authorities require the submission of a current extract from the criminal record as part of an initial application. Submitting one when submitting the application can in any case help to speed up the process.
The documents and evidence mentioned must be submitted in the original and as a copy. For a better examination, the authority can request that the documents be translated into German or English or that they be authenticated.
- Entry fee:
€ 120 for people aged 6 and over; for children under 6 years: € 75
- Grant fee:
€ 20 for people aged 6 and over; for children under 6 years: € 50
- Personalization costs (acceptance of photo, fingerprints and signature): € 20
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