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Visa for family reunion - Sierra Leone

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Last update: August 2017

In order to apply for a visa to join a family member for a permanent stay in Germany all applicants have to apply in person at the Embassy.

Appointments can only be booked through the Embassy’s Online Appointment System. To book an appointment go to the website of the Embassy and click on the direct link.

On the day of the appointment the applicant is asked to appear in person at 7.00 a.m.. For administrative reasons applications received later than 7.00 a.m. cannot be accepted. In this case the appointment will have to be re-scheduled.

Please note that incomplete applications cannot be accepted. In this case the appointment will have to be re-scheduled. Documents handed in prior to the appointment date cannot be accepted. All documents must be handed in by the applicant on the day of the appointment. Documents sent directly to the Embassy prior to the appointment cannot be considered. Alternatively, an incomplete application can be denied immediately. Should you wish to proceed accordingly, please communicate this to the Embassy.

The visa procedure may take several months, since all applications have to be referred to local German authorities. Therefore, the Embassy has little influence on the actual processing time.

General requirements to apply for a visa

These documents have to be presented by ALL applicants.

  • passport of the applicant (with two copies)
  • birth certificate - based on FIRST registration! (with two copies)
  • two visa application forms, completely filled out and signed
    Download the application form here: Website of the Embassy
  • three passport pictures of the applicant – white background
  • one passport picture of the reference person living in Germany
  • copy of passport data page of reference person in Germany
  • complete passport copy of reference person in Germany (all pages, including data page)
  • copy of residence permit of reference person in Germany, if applicable
  • recently issued (within the past two months) proof of address in Germany of reference person (“Meldebescheinigung”)
  • evidence of former residence/stay in Germany (e.g. old passport, visa, Emergency Travel Certificate) (with two copies)
  • in case of previous deportation from Germany: written proof of authorisation to re-enter Germany issued by the competent immigration office in Germany (with two copies)
  • all WAEC-Certificates (BECE/WASSCE), baptism certificate, if applicable (with two copies)
  • if reference person is living on a DAAD-scholarship in Germany, confirmation by DAAD about the financial support and health certificate (with two copies)

Additional requirements for:

1) Joining a spouse

You need to apply for this visa if you want to join your spouse in Germany.

  • marriage certificate, including registrar’s certificate (with two copies)
  • Sierra Leonean or foreign certificate(s) of divorce (with two copies)
  • legally valid German certificate(s) of divorce (with two copies)
  • Proof of sufficient knowledge of the German language by presenting an A-1 level certificate of the Goethe Institute (with two copies)***
  • visa fee of 75,00 Euros, payable in Ghana Cedis (applications of persons who are married to a German or EU-citizen are free of charge). The administrative fee is to be paid in full when submitting the application. Should the visa be denied, the Embassy will not refund any money.

***In principle the Embassy recognizes certificates from all German language schools which follow the standardized language test of the “Association of Language Tests in Europe” (ALTE) and employ native German teachers. In Ghana only the Goethe Inistitute fulfils these requirements. “Goethe-Zertifikat A1, Start Deutsch 1-Zeugnis”, further information at: www.goethe.de

2) Getting married in Germany

You need to apply for this visa if you have a fiancé(e) in Germany and are planning to get married in Germany after your arrival.

  • statutory declaration (as proof of premarital status) declared by one parent of the Sierra Leonean spouse.
    If both parents are deceased, a statutory declaration about the premarital status of the applicant has to be made by the head of family.
    The statutory declaration has to be sworn before a notary public at the place of residence of the declarant and must be legalised by the MInistry of Foreign Affairs in Freetown/
    Sierra Leone. (with two copies)
  • Sierra Leonean or foreign certificate(s) of divorce (with two copies)
  • legally valid German certificate(s) of divorce (with two copies)
  • Proof of sufficient knowledge of the German language by presenting an A-1 level certificate of the Goethe Institute (with two copies)***
  • visa fee of 75,00 Euros, payable in Ghana Cedis. The administrative fee is to be paid in full when submitting the application. Should the visa be denied, the Embassy will not refund any money.

A visa for the purpose of getting married in Germany can only be granted once all the legal requirements have been fulfilled and the marriage is imminent. The Embassy, therefore, recommends contacting the competent German civil registry well in advance to obtain information about their requirements.

Additional documents to be presented at a later stage:

The visa can only be granted if the German civil registry office has issued a confirmation stating that a date for the intended marriage has been scheduled. The Embassy will ask for this confirmation once all the other requirements are fulfilled. Thus, this confirmation does not have to be presented on the day of the visa application.

Once all the requirements are fulfilled and the visa can be granted, a formal obligation according to § 66 - 68 of the German Residence Act confirmed by the local immigration office in Germany (“Verpflichtungserklärung”) will have to be presented for the time period of entering Germany until solemnizing the marriage.

It is also recommended to have sufficient health insurance coverage for the time period of entering Germany until solemnizing the marriage.

***In principle the Embassy recognizes certificates from all German language schools which follow the standardized language test of the ”Association of Language Tests in Europe“ (ALTE) and employ native German teachers. In Ghana only the Goethe Institute fulfils these requirements. ”Goethe-Zertifikat A1, Start Deutsch 1-Zeugnis“, further information at: www.goethe.de

3) Family reunion for children

You need to apply for this visa if a child is supposed to join one or both parents in Germany.

Kindly note, that the caretaker and - if applicable - the parent, who is still a resident in Sierra Leone, have to personally accompany the child on the day of the appointment with a valid ID (passport, voter card, driver’s license). The visa applicant needs to present his/her passport.

The application forms must be signed by the person(s) who has/have custody of the child (normally the parents!). The signature of the parent in Germany has to be certified by a notary public or by a competent local authority.

PLEASE NOTE: without a certified signature the application cannot be accepted by the German Embassy! In this case the appointment has to be re-scheduled.

  • two visa application forms, completely filled out and signed
    Download the application form here: Website of the Embassy
  • visa fee of 37,50 Euros per child, payable in Ghana Cedis (application of a child whose parent is a German or EU-citizen is free of charge). The administrative fee is to be paid in full when submitting the application. Should the visa be denied, the Embassy will not refund any money.

If the child wants to join a GERMAN parent:

  • affidavit of the other parent giving his/her consent to the application of the child to join the parent in Germany (with two copies)

If the child wants to join a parent who is NOT German:

  • proof of sole custody (e.g. death certificate of other parent, custody order according to Children’s Act) (with two copies)
  • if child is 16 years or older: proof of sufficient knowledge of the German language by presenting a C-1 level certificate of the Goethe Institute (with two copies)***

***In principle the Embassy recognizes certificates from all German language schools which follow the standardized language test of the “Association of Language Tests in Europe” (ALTE) and employ native German teachers. In Ghana only the Goethe Institute fulfils these requirements. Further information at: www.goethe.de

4) Joining a German child

You need to apply for this visa if the mother or the father of a German child wants to join this German child in Germany. It also applies if the parent wants to move to Germany together with the child.

  • copy of child’s passport (two copies)
  • child’s birth certificate (with two copies)
  • marriage certificate, if applicable (with two copies)
  • recognition of paternity, if applicable (with two copies)
  • proof of custody, if applicable (with two copies)
  • divorce certificate, if applicable (with two copies)

In addition to the standard requirements other supporting documents may be required, depending on the specific nature of your application.

In case of enquiries please refrain from calling, instead we kindly ask you to contact the Embassy via email

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