I have a Blue Card valid for 4 years, starting 2017, ending 2020. No employer is written on card or Zusatzblatt.

After 15 months of working for my first employer, I'm changing employment. If I change from my first employer, should I notify ABH? When should I do it: when I decide to quit, when I actually quit, after getting another job offer, or actually receiving a contract with a new employer?

How much time am I allowed to spend in Germany without a working contract? I've found it's three months.

Is this time cumulative? Does each successive job change allow me three months or, if I change jobs multiple times during those 4 years, does my unemployed time accumulate to 3 months in total?

I'm working in IT.

1 Answer 1


If you rely on your savings solely, it's six months.

The blue card is connected to having a job, whether there is an employer given already or not – if you have no employer noted on the card, it just means you start with the three/six-month grant.

After becoming jobless, you again have three/six month looking for a job. With a new job offer you have to update the blue card. The local Ausländerbehörde will then ask the local Arbeitsagentur about your employment record and they say ok/not ok.

This creates a grey area. The three month are not cumulative but if you hop-on-off jobs with only short times of employment inbetween, the Arbeitsagentur may question your qualification.

And yes, you should talk to both offices and explain your situation. They get to know about your unemployment status automatically from the notification to the public insurances your former employer has to send.

  • Thanks @Janka for the clarification. Another question: The notification of unemployment status goes to the public insurance even if I use private insurance?
    – maricn
    Commented Apr 18, 2018 at 19:15
  • 1
    Yes, because regardless if you have private health insurance, there's still public unemployment and retirement insurances. These DEÜV notices apply to anyone who isn't self-employed.
    – Janka
    Commented Apr 18, 2018 at 19:27

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