I am recently divorced and our children are staying with my ex-wife for the next 2 years. She moved to Berlin (studying) and that is where my children are now as well. We are all US citizens.

I'm moving to Berlin, too, so I can stay close to my children. I don't have a salaried work right now (a co-founder in a start-up in US) but I do have sufficient funds in my banking accounts. I do plan to study at a University in Berlin, but this is not for this year (need to learn the language first).

What type of visa would be best for my situation?

  • 2
    I need to do some research before posting a proper answer, but i don't think it looks good. You may be able to motivate something based on family ties, but I'm skeptical. Better to enroll in a course of study in English if you can find one, or get a job, or open a German office of your company.
    – phoog
    Apr 20, 2017 at 13:35
  • I'm eagerly waiting for your response, thanks for looking into it
    – YePhIcK
    Apr 20, 2017 at 14:10
  • @phoog would OP be allowed to remotely work for their startup on a study visa? If I recall correctly on Travel SE there are cases where US citizens attracted a UK ban in a similar fashion.
    – mts
    Jul 27, 2017 at 16:21
  • @mts I don't think a student would be allowed to work remotely with a student visa, but I don't know for sure.
    – phoog
    Jul 27, 2017 at 23:22

1 Answer 1


I tried to apply for a family reunion visa only to make an officer extremely puzzled over my situation. She needed to consult (at length!) with her colleagues and her supervisor to get back to me and say: "this visa is only for family members that stay with adult family members". So if my children were 18+ - only then could I have used that option.

So (scrambling for time) I went to the Foreigners' Registration Office at 2am (it is summer so crowds of students are applying) and ended up applying for a studying the language visa for 1 year. This type of visa is extremely flexible and I can change it to either studying at University, or working, or any other type at any time with no penalties.

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