Every person who flees to Germany must contact and inform the German authorities, i.e. border patrol authorities, the police, the Immigration Office, an arrival centre ("Ankunftzentrum") or an initial reception centre ("Erstaufnahmeeinrichtung"). You can read more about registration in our chapter "Registering as an asylum seeker".
How can I apply for asylum?
Asylum procedure is the process which determines whether a person should be granted asylum in Germany or not. The asylum procedure is regulated in the German Asylum Act. The process consists of several steps: asylum application, Dublin examination ("Dublin-Prüfung"), hearing and decision making. Officially, therefore, the asylum procedure begins when the individual applies for asylum. But before you can formally apply for asylum ("Asylantrag"), you must first register as an asylum seeker ("Asylgesuch"). You can find a full overview of the asylum procedure in Germany on BAMF’s website.
Note: Because of the Corona pandemic, application for asylum can only take place in writing. As soon as you are registered in an Initial Reception Centre ("Erstaufnahmeeinrichtung"), you will be handed a so-called proof of arrival ("Ankunftsnachweis ") and an asylum application form. After you fill out and sign the application form, It will be sent to the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees (BAMF) together with a copy of your proof of arrival. The BAMF will then send you a temporary stay permit ("Aufenthaltsgestattung"). Your hearing will be scheduled AFTER the situation somewhat calms. You can find out more at bamf.de.
Note: BAMF has resumed informing asylum seekers whose applications have been rejected. Check your mailbox regularly and contact your lawyer or the Pro Asyl hotline if you receive a letter of rejection from BAMF.
How does the German asylum procedure work?
Registering as an asylum seeker
What questions are asked during the hearing?
You must definitely notify the Immigration Office and the BAMF when you move to a new apartment or are transferred to another accommodation centre during your asylum procedure. If you forget to inform them about your new address, you may miss essential letters and, and consequently, important appointments and information regarding your asylum case.