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As an American, my tourist visa for Germany expires December 22. However, I'm turning in my application for a work visa this week. While I wait for visa approval, do I have to stay (thus receiving some form of temporary visa or something), or do I have to leave and wait for approval from my local consulate?

  • The fact that you have applied doesn't directly mean that your application has been accepted. So, when your current VISA expires, you will be staying "illegally" in Germany. If you want to risk it, you should avoid "being caught" until you get your working VISA. – user8598 Dec 3 '15 at 14:01
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    @StivenLlupa In Germany that is not the case. You can stay until the application has been processed, see my answer. – neo Dec 3 '15 at 16:18
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You can stay in Germany, until your application has been processed, see § 81 Abs. 3 Satz 1 AufenthG:

If a foreigner who is legally resident in the federal territory and does not possess a residence title applies for a residence title, his or her residence shall be deemed to be permitted up to the time of the decision by the foreigners authority.

To certify this right you get a Fiktionsbescheinigung when you apply, Abs. 6:

The foreigner shall be issued a certificate confirming the effect of his or her application (provisional residence document).

This does not allow you to work during that time .

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