Application process

The path to obtaining the German licensure for foreign doctors, dentists, and pharmacists is a multi-step process. In this article, we provide an overview of the application process.

How does the application for the licensure work?

In this video, Dr. Ben explains the general process of application in six steps.

Step 1: Your Application and documents

Send your signed application for licensure and your documents by mail to the licensing authority in the federal state that you’ve chosen. You’ll find the address on the application form.


Step 2: Confirmation of receipt

After the licensing authority receives your application they’ll send you a short message. This message is called a confirmation of receipt. Don't be surprised, this can take several weeks. You’ll usually receive the confirmation of receipt by e-mail or by mail. Make sure that you enter the correct address on your application form and can be reached at this address.


Step 3: Local jurisdiction

The licensing authority will check if your application falls within their jurisdiction. You need proof of credibility for them to do this. If they accept your proof of credibility, they are responsible for processing your application.

If they don’t accept your proof of credibility, your application does not fall within their jurisdiction. In this case, you must submit new proof of credibility without being asked to do so.

Some licensing authorities inform you in the confirmation of receipt whether they’ve accepted your proof of credibility.


Step 4: Notification

After your documents  have been reviewed, you’ll receive another message, which is a notification. The notification informs you about three important things:

  1. Whether the documents you submitted are complete. If not, you must submit the missing documents as soon as possible.
  2. Whether your university degree is recognized in Germany. If not, the licensing authority will usually get an expert opinion from the Central Office for Foreign Education in Bonn.
  3. Whether you have to take the professional language test and the professional knowledge test to obtain recognition. In some federal states, the notification may be a test invitation, often including a test date. 


Step 5: Required tests

If you’re required to take tests, you’ll need to successfully pass them in order to receive your professional license. Therefore, you should be well prepared. We recommend that you take preparation courses with FIA.


Step 6: Receive your professional license

The licensing authority will send your professional license to the address you provided in your application. Please inform the licensing authority immediately if your address has changed.

Tips to avoid delays during the application process and make good use of the waiting time:

Application: Apply for licensure in the federal state where you want to work.

Documents: Write your curriculum vitae in a structured way and without gaps up to the time of your application.  Sign your CV with date and place. Do not forget to sign documents that require a signature. Send all documents to the licensing authority as complete as possible. If something is missing, submit the requested documents as soon as possible.

Waiting times: In order to make good use of waiting times, I recommend that you gain practical experience at German healthcare facilities and take FIA preparation courses for your recognition tests.