Self-Employment Visa - Business Investor and Freelancer

Germany’s self-employment visa is open to those who wish to either set up a business in Germany or work as a freelancer in a “liberal profession”. The visa offers a path to both permanent residency and citizenship in Germany and – by extension – the EU.

Though German authorities don’t specify any minimum investment amounts, enterprising service providers have identified successful standardized investment routes with effective minimum investments amounting to some EUR 350,000.


Program at a glance

Program TypeActive Investor Visa
Time to citizenship8 years or less (See Path to Citizenship)
Time to permanent residency5 years
Minimum investmentNone (de facto EUR 350,000 in Business Investor category)
Physical presence requirementNot specified
Application processing time3 months
Citizenship grants visa-free travel to190 destinations, including Schengen countries and US
Contribution types availableBusiness Investment, proof of sufficient project finance

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Explore Programs

Direct Citizenship Programs

Programs that offer citizenship within months in exchange for investments or donations, with minor/no physical presence requirements.

Semi-Direct Citizenship Programs

Programs that offer citizenship in exchange for investments following a 1-2 year period, with minor/no physical presence requirements.

Active Investor Visas

Programs that offer residence permits within months to those who physically relocate to start and/or run a business. Startup and entrepreneur visas fall under this category.

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