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I'm an EU-citizen (Polish) and I'm starting my first full-time job in Germany in one week. I've already found a place to stay, but still without formal registration (Anmeldung). The HR person of the company I will be working for claims that I have to find a place to stay and be officially registered before I start my job there. They say that my contract will be vaild only if I will have that registration and I won't be able to open a bank account, register in social insurance system and so on.

For me, that sounds pretty scary, because the situation on the flat market is very bad in Berlin right now. It's very hard to find something in affordable price and the landlords usually don't want to register people, due to risks, like being not able to evict people that are not paying on time.

So the question is: do I really need to be registered, before I start my job there, or is there some period I can work without bothering about registration?

EDIT: The berlin.de website states that there is a 14-days period after the arrival, when the registration must be done. It is also said that landlords have to make registration possible, but in practice nobody force them to do that.

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    Risks, like? It seems you did not finish the sentence. I am not really surprised you came across a place like that but a landlord implying that you can't register at his address is typically the sign that something fishy is going on. I am not sure whether the contract is per se invalid but registration is indeed mandatory and necessary for many things. IIRC, I started to work a couple of days before having everything sorted but I was registered before the first pay-day. – Gala Oct 26 '15 at 16:54
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    Also realize that you risk a rather heave fine (hundreds of euros) if you live in Germany without registering. In practice, you can stay for weeks even months if you don't need to interact with the authorities but if you are working you will need to sort out your taxes, leave a paper trail, etc. and can expect problems down the line. – Gala Oct 26 '15 at 16:56
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Once you arrive to Germany you will have to register your residence at the City Hall in one weeks time. You do it in 10 minutes and it costs nothing. You just use address where you are in Germany. From then on it's your legal address. Previously it was enough to just show up with the filled in form and passport, and they would register you. You may need a proof of residence, in a form of rent contract or similar.

Just be aware that for rented apartments the procedure is changed a bit, and your landlord is now required to provide you with the rent statement that has to be used for registration when moving in and out.

  • Make sure to get a Wohnungsgeberbestätigung — you will need it for registration. – gerrit Nov 7 '18 at 18:53
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Since you are moving within the Schengen area, you can live in another state for up to 90 days without registration. If you rent an apartment, you may be required to register within a much shorter period – that varies from Bundesland to Bundesland. In any case, that countdown doesn't start until you actually move in.

That being said, the registration procedure in Germany is fairly simple. You need a valid ID and possibly proof of residence. Requirements which other EU states have, such as proving you have a source of income and valid social/health insurance, are not required to register in Germany as an EU citizen. (Personal experience from supporting a Lithuanian citizen in the process.)

Your employer should not normally be concerned with any of this, unless your contract states otherwise. You should still be able to open a bank account, though some restrictions may apply if you're not registered.

  • The employer will need the Steueridentifikationsnummer. To get a Steueridentifikationsnummer, OP needs to be registered. So although the employer may not care directly, they certainly care indirectly. – gerrit Nov 7 '18 at 18:54
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You can work without being registered; in fact; you don't really have to register ever if you don't want to actually live there (if you decide you want to commute to Germany and maintain your Polish residency, for example). I'm Italian and I needed to register only really because I wanted actually move here and my son needs to go to school and everything; but if I was single and wanted to maintain my Italian residency without any special benefits from Germany, it wouldn't have been a real problem (there are some rules about how much time you spend in each country to determine your residency, but to be honest I think that only needs to be taken seriously for purposes of tax and benefits). Now let's assume, because it seems to be your case anyway, that you are moving to Germany and will settle down here; so you do need to register, but you CAN start work without it (unless there is some restriction between Germany and Poland, which I highly-highly doubt since both are full members of the EU. My employment here in Germany was first registered with my Italian address and once I registered my residency here I sent the company the residency document and they updated my registration. I first arrived here in the 1st of July but rented a temp apartment for the first month while I got a feeling of the city and everything; went back to Italy (where my family was still getting stuff sorted for the move) every weekend and only really moved with wife and son around the 20th so only then we went to the apartment that we decided to rent for the first year; the owner of this apartment filled out a document with all our information and the date that we arrived there (20th July) so when I registered for my residency on the 27th, I was still within the 14 days since I "really" moved in.

My first pay slip came with my Italian address and Italian bank account; only the second one came with my German address and bank... but the company would have had no problem keeping it all Italian if I didn't want to "move" to Germany.

On a side note: you will probably have to register at the Polish consulate once you establish your residency (Italians certainly need to; they got really mad at me when I went there only 2 months later).

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