An offer from the Federal Institute for Vocational Education and Training

Information about counselling

You should seek advice before applying for recognition. This is provided in Germany and abroad.

Answers to the following questions are provided here:

  • Where can I get counselling on the recognition?
  • Which questions can I get advice on?
  • Which documents do I need for the counselling session?


Where can I get advice on the recognition?

You can get advice on the recognition of your professional qualification in Germany and also abroad. The counselling is free of charge. Counselling centres local to you can be found via the counselling search.

Are you still abroad and are there no counselling centres local to you? In this case you can call or email the hotline “Working and Living in Germany” for an initial counselling session. For more in-depth advice and support during the recognition procedure you can contact the Service Center for Professional Recognition (ZSBA). The ZSBA helps with the application, advises you on training options and work opportunities, and provides support during the entire recognition procedure up until your arrival in Germany. All counselling services are free of charge.

Unfortunately the telephone hotline is often busy. Replies to written enquiries to the hotline can often take several weeks. Our tip: Start by searching for information in the Recognition-Finder or on our FAQ site!

Our recommendation

  • First get advice and then apply for recognition. This means you can avoid errors in the application and delays with the processing.
  • Arrange an appointment with the counselling centre. You can arrange an appointment by telephone.


Which questions can I get advice on? 

The specialist advisers support you throughout the entire recognition procedure. The counselling centres provide advice specifically on the following questions.

If you are not yet in Germany, you can also get answers to the following questions:

  • How can I immigrate to Germany?
  • How do I find a job in Germany?
  • How do I apply for a job in Germany?
  • How can I improve my German language skills?


Which documents do I need for the counselling session?

  • Curriculum vitae
  • Certificates with a summary of subjects and grades
  • Proof of employment, if available (e.g. employment references or time book)
  • Identification (e.g. personal identification, identification card)
  • If you have already applied for a recognition procedure: letters and notices from the competent authority.

Do you already have documents translated into German? If so, also bring these with you to the counselling session.

Our recommendation

The counselling centre will tell you in advance which documents you need to bring with you. Please only send documents to a counselling centre if the counselling centre has asked you to do this.