Who must register?
If you work, study or stay in Germany for more than three months, you need to register your address at a local registration office (Bürgeramt). You need to register, or at least arrange an appointment at the registration office, within two weeks of moving into your residence in Germany. You can only register if you have a rental contract.
You do not need to register if you are a tourist staying at a hostel or hotel.
Where to register?
Download our FREE guide “Registration Offices in Germany”. Here you can find information about the address, telephone number and opening times of your local registration office (in German). Just follow the website links and choose the registration office which is closest to where you live.
Alternatively, google ‘Buergeramt’ or ‘Einwohnermeldebehoerde’ and your city. Then the address of your local registration office should come up.
Filling out the Registration Form – Church tax information
On the registration form, there is a box that asks you about your religious belief. If you fill out the box then you will automatically pay church tax (up to 9% of your income tax). So leave the box for ‘Religion’ blank, if you do not want to pay church tax.
Does registration affect how much income tax I have to pay in Germany?
Yes, it does. The information you give on the registration form affects your tax class (Steuerklasse), meaning how much income tax you pay on your German salary. If you indicate that you are married and your partner lives with you in Germany, then both of you should register together and bring your marriage certificate; married couples pay less income tax in Germany. The same applies, if you have kids. Bring them and their birth certificates to the appointment.
Sharing of Personal Information
Be aware that the information you submit in the registration form will be shared with political parties, churches and other official bodies. If you do not want your information to be shared with third parties, you need to complete a form called ‘transmission barrier of personal data’ (Übermittlungsperre).
Do I need the landlord confirmation to register in Germany?
Yes, without the landlord confirmation you cannot register in Germany. In German, the landlord confirmation is also referred to as Wohnungsgeberbestätigung, Vermieterbescheinigung or Einzugsbestätigung. On the form, your landlord or rental agency confirms that you have moved into the residence, room or flat. Your landlord must sign the landlord confirmation. If this is not possible, you must discuss this with the official at the registration office.