Almost 10 months ago, I got my blue card and came to Germany to work as a software architect with a very good salary (+ 100k EU) and started my journey in a new city. I'm considering working for myself as a freelancer to have more autonomy and for sure to make more money.

On my blue card, it's mentioned: "Selbständige Tätigkeit gestattet" which means I'm eligible to be self-employed as well.

My questions:

  • Is that possible to leave my current job and turn into a freelancer?
  • if the above answer is Yes, I'm considering to have my registration inside Germany (Anmeldung) for my taxes, pension and bank account and start traveling the world which was always my dream. This means I'm not going to be inside of Germany (or EU nations generally) not more than few weeks every 3-4 months. If I pay all of my taxes and pension contributions, is that important I physically be inside of Germany?
  • If the above answer is Yes, I'm considering to get my permanent residency after 21 months with a B1 german certificate considering I started to learn Germany from the time I was younger. If I pay my taxes as a freelancer over the next 11 months (I've already paid taxes, pension, health insurance for 10 months), Can I still apply for a PR or not?
  • 3
    Someone has voted to close this as primarily opinion based, which makes little sense to me. The question seems quite obviously (to me at least) to be about the legal implications for the blue card and German residency of becoming a globetrotting freelancer. There should be objective answers available regarding the physical presence requirements of a German blue card, the tax implications of this plan, and the rules concerning permanent residency.
    – phoog
    Commented May 2, 2019 at 17:39
  • 100k+ is a very good salary. as a freelancer you will have much more tax and insurance trouble and you will have to do sales and marketing & stuff. Vacation will be your empty time (as employee it is paid). I don't think that at the end you will make more than 100k as freelancer.
    – kriscorbus
    Commented May 2, 2019 at 19:45
  • The question needs some further editing though. I already tried to clean it up, but it would really help if the off-topic parts (What are the downsides?) are removed.
    – user6860
    Commented May 3, 2019 at 7:28

2 Answers 2


The Blue Card allows you to freelance, but your job must remain your main occupation. In other words, you can take freelance side gigs, but if you quit your job, you won't keep your Blue Card.

If you want to be a full time freelancer, you must apply for a German freelance visa.

There is more. Your residence permit allows you to leave Germany for up to 180 days at a time. You can return for a day and leave again, but you can't stay out of Germany for more than 180 days at once.

You also need to remember to register your freelance business with the Finanzamt by filling the Fragebogen zur steuerlichen Erfassung. There might be additional requirements depending on the type of business, as explained here.

Once you have your permanent residency, things get a lot easier, but even the PR has similar limits on how long you can leave the country, and you are still required to register your business.


The main downside is if you don't reside in Germany for a period of 6 months, your residence permit becomes invalid (§51(7) ).

You should contact an immigration lawyer to determine how this can be interpreted.

Also remember that as a freelancer you must take out a private health insurance, which can become horrendous in time.

And roaming around the world will not make it cheaper.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.