As more and more often we are booked for an assistance to swap a Working Holiday Visa into a work permit, we explain what are the rights and responsibilities of the visa holders.
Working Holiday Visa is a special bi-lateral program designed for young citizen (18 to 30 years of age) of partnerting countries: Australia, New Zealand, Japan, Republic of Korea (commonly known as South Korea), Hong Kong, Taiwan, Chile, Isreal, Brasil; for citizens of Canada the age is set for 18 to 35.
The idea behind the program is to promote mobility of young people to get the know the country, its culture and traditions and encourages to begin to study in the parntering country upon completing the journey. Visa holders are allowed to work in Germany, to gain means to sustain themselves while on the trip. It is allowed to work full time, however at maximum six (6) months at one employer.
Working Holiday Visas can only be applied for before entering Germany. Upon arrival a mandatory residency registration is due as soon as a permanent location is taken up. The visa is valid for 12 months and cannot be extended.
Quite often, as our experience shows, young professionals arrive to Germany on the Working Holiday Visa and upon completing a few months of an employment, they wish to stay in Germany long-term and require a change of their legal title. As such, as soon as they realise they would like to extend their stay in Germany, we adivse to apply for a work permit. The procedure of obtaining a work permit can be lenghty, hence in order to avoid the risk of not being allowed to work continuesly, we strongly advise to calculate in between a month to three.
There are several documents required to file together with the application form, also confirming a standing job offer, a job description, a salary to name a few. A committment from employer is crucial as they also need to fill in various documents.