What is The Procedure For Asylum Seekers in Germany ? (Steps on Arrival)

The stages of the German asylum procedure

An overview of the individual procedural steps
and the legal basis

The information in this article is collected from BAMF Website which is an official website for Migration in Germany.

Who is a “refugee”?

The term “refugee” is often used in everyday language as a general synonym for people who have been displaced, but the law on asylum only understands it as covering recognized refugees in accordance with the Geneva Refugee Convention, that is individuals who are given refugee protection once their asylum proceedings have been completed. There are however three more forms of protection where a right to asylum can be granted, if they are applicable. As the authority responsible for implementing the law on asylum, the Federal Office distinguishes more precisely, that is between the following groups of individuals:


individuals who intend to file an asylum application but have not yet been registered by the Federal Office as asylum applicants.

Asylum applicants:

asylum applicants whose asylum proceedings are pending and whose case has
not yet been decided on.
Persons entitled to protection and persons entitled to remain:
individuals who receive an entitlement to asylum, refugee protection or
subsidiary protection, or who may remain in Germany on the basis of a ban
on deportation.

1.1 Arrival and registration in Germany

All individuals reporting as seeking asylum in the Federal Republic of Germany are registered. Personal data are recorded at this point. All applicants are photographed; the fingerprints are also taken of people aged over 6. The recorded data are stored centrally in the “Central Register of Foreigners”. All public agencies which subsequently need them for their respective tasks have access to these data to the extent that they need them for their respective remits. In a first step, the new data are compared with those already available in the Central Register of Foreigners, as well as with those of the Federal Criminal Police Office.

It is examined amongst other things whether an initial application, a follow-up application or possibly a multiple application has been made. It is also investigated using a Europe-wide system (Eurodac) whether another European state might be responsible for carrying out the asylum procedure.

Asylum-seekers receive a proof of arrival (Ankunftsnachweis) at the reception facility or arrival center which is responsible for them to prove that they have registered. As the first official document, the proof of arrival serves to document the entitlement to reside in Germany. And what is equally important is that it constitutes an entitlement to draw state benefits, such as accommodation, medical treatment and food.

The Central Register of Foreigners (Ausländerzentralregister)

The data collected during registration are stored in the Central Register of Foreigners (AZR). The AZR is a nationwide, personal file which is centrally managed by the Federal Office. It contains information on people from abroad who are or were resident in Germany. All the immigration authorities work with these data in performing their tasks.

1.2 Initial distribution and accommodation for Asylum Seekers in Germany

First, all asylum-seekers are received in nearby reception facilities of the Federal Land in question. Such a facility may be responsible for temporary as well as longer-term accommodation. Allocation to a specific reception facility is decided according to the specific branch office of the Federal Office processing the asylum-seeker’s respective country of origin: Asylum-seekers can be accommodated in reception facilities for up to six months, or until their application is decided on. They can however also be allocated to another facility during this period under certain circumstances, for instance for family reunification.

EASY – The quota system for fair distribution

The EASY quota system (Initial Distribution of Asylum-Seekers) is orientated in line with the “Königstein Key”. The distribution quota is calculated on an annual basis, and determines what share of asylum-seekers are received by each Federal Land. This ensures suitable, fair distribution among the Federal Länder. The current distribution quotas can be found on the web at www.bamf.de.

1.3 The competent reception facility for Asylum Seekers in Germany

The competent reception facility is responsible for providing food and board for asylum-seekers. They receive benefits in kind at subsistence level during their stay and a monthly amount of money to cover their everyday personal needs. The nature and amount of the benefits are regulated by the Asylum-Seekers’ Benefits Act (Asylbewerberleistungsgesetz). These include basic benefits for food, housing, heating, clothing, healthcare and personal hygiene, as well as household durables and consumables, benefits to cover personal daily requirements, benefits in case of sickness, pregnancy and birth, as well as individual benefits which depend on the particular case.
Benefits for asylum applicants are also provided in the follow-up accommodation (such as in collective accommodation or even a private apartment). More information is available from the responsible immigration authority.

1.4 Personal asylum applications for Asylum Seekers in Germany

A personal application is filed with a branch office of the Federal Office (an arrival centre or an AnkER facility). An interpreter is available for this appointment. Applicants are informed of their rights and duties within the asylum procedure. They furthermore receive all the important information in writing in their native language.
The personal data are recorded during the application procedure, if this has not already taken place. Applicants are obliged to prove their identity if they are able to do so. Documents accepted include a national passport, as well as other personal documents such as birth certificates and driving licenses. The Federal Office uses physical and technical document examination to assess the original documents. The application is made in person as a rule. A written asylum application may only be filed in special cases, for instance if the individual in question is in a hospital or has not yet reached the age of maturity.

Residence obligation (Residenzpflicht)

Once their asylum application has been filed, applicants receive a certificate of their permission to reside (Aufenthaltsgestattung). This certificate serves as documentation vis-à-vis state agencies that they are asylum applicants, and proves that they are in Germany lawfully. Permission to reside is territorially restricted to the district (residence obligation) in which the responsible reception facility is located. Persons with poor prospects to remain are obliged to live in the reception facilities until the decision is taken. If their asylum application is turned down as “manifestly unfounded” or “inadmissible” (see also “Appeals against the decision”), this obligation for people to reside in a particular place then applies until they leave the country. They are not permitted to work during this period, and they may only temporarily leave the area designated in their permission to reside if they have permission from the Federal Office.

Persons with good prospects to remain may initially also only remain in the area designated in their permission to reside. They too need permission if they would like to temporarily leave this area. The residence obligation ceases to apply to them after three months. The residence area is then expanded to cover the entire country.

1.5 Examining the Dublin procedure

The Dublin procedure is used for determining the Member State responsible prior to the actual examination of the asylum application. The Dublin procedure is used to determine the responsibility for carrying out the asylum procedure in an EU Member State. The Dublin III Regulation lays down criteria and procedures to be applied when determining the Member State responsible for examining an application for international protection. It applies in all 28 EU Member States, as well as in Norway, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Switzerland. The purpose of the Dublin procedure is for
each asylum application which is lodged in the territory of the Member States to be examined under the substantive law of one country only. The steps in the Dublin procedure in the Federal Office After the application has been submitted to the competent branch office of the Federal Office, the personal interview takes place, the content of which is used by the Federal Office to determine the competent Member State and to examine impediments to deportation in the Dublin procedure. The applicant is informed in this interview about the procedure and asked to state any reasons why he or she should not be transferred to another Member State.

If there are indications that another Member State is responsible, the file to initiate the Dublin procedure is forwarded to the Dublin Centre of the Federal Office which holds responsibility there. If the examination carried out by the Dublin Centre reveals that another Member State could be responsible for processing the asylum application, a “transfer request” is addressed to the Member State concerned. If the Member State approves the transfer request, the Federal Office finds that the asylum application is inadmissible in Germany and orders deportation to the responsible Member State.

-The individual in question may bring an action against this decision and apply to the administrative court that has jurisdiction to order suspensive effect. Transfer to the Member State is not permissible before a judicial ruling has been handed down on the application for suspensive effect to be ordered. The transfer must take place within six months of the agreement of the Member State. If the individual in question is in custody, the transfer period is 12 months. If the individual in question is a fugitive, the transfer period is 18 months. If a request is made for suspensive effect to be ordered, the transfer period is interrupted until a decision is taken on that request. The actual enforcement of the transfer is the responsibility of the immigration authorities and of the Federal Police. This also includes setting a date for the transfer.

These were the first 5 Steps for Asylum Seekers in Germany. we are going to post the next steps in this website later, make sure to stay updated with us: AfghanReporter.com

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