Visa Option 1: The EU Blue Card
One of the most popular options available to citizens of non-EU countries is the EU Blue Card. For more information, we have a dedicated page for the EU Blue Card. The EU Blue Card allows one to move to the EU for a maximum period of four years. As a form of visa, it involves a much more straightforward process than other visa options. Moreover, it can be extended and can also lead to settlement permits in the future if one wishes to spend longer in Germany. Furthermore, such a visa holder receive many of the same rights and entitlements as German and other EU Citizens during their stay in the country.
When coming from Hong Kong and wishing to benefit from the EU Blue Card, one should bear in mind the following conditions. The EU Blue Card is designed for high-earning individuals and those working in areas where there are labour shortages. Such fields include science, mathematics, medicine/doctors and technology.
Visa Option 2: The ICT Card
Another option available to workers in Hong Kong is that of the ICT Card. The ICT Card stands for Intra-Corporate Transfer Card. This card allows workers in a multinational business to be moved from one part of the company based outside of the EU to one within it. It is open to non-EU citizens and allows them to stay in the Schengen Zone for up to three years. The ICT Card is regulated for in German law by §18b German Residence Act. This type of visa is once again designed to make it easier for workers to come to Germany and other EU countries. Furthermore, there is even the option of availing of the Mobile ICT Card for moving around to different countries within the Schengen Zone.
The ICT Card is for those who have been with a company for more than six months, and there are different requirements for those involved in the management and those lower down the ladder. Importantly, the ICT Card is a reliable means of coming to Germany, and once in the country, one can explore further options if they wish to remain in the country. Once again, our website has more information on the specifics involved with obtaining the ICT Card.
Visa Option 3: §21 of the Residency Act – Start-Up, Entrepreneur and Self-Employment in Germany
Germany is a country that is well-known as one with a positive outlook towards business. It deservingly has a reputation as a central hub for start-up companies and innovation. Under §21 of the Residency Act, a non-German national, including those from Hong Kong, can avail of a visa and come to Germany as an entrepreneur. The applicant in question has to demonstrate that their idea serves an economic interest or regional need and can have a positive impact on the economy.
Furthermore, the business plan will be examined in detail and overall, the business viability will be assessed to determine whether to award the required visa. For more information on this topic, please consult our more detailed page about Visas for Entrepreneurs. If one can avail of this visa, one also has the benefit of bringing their family to Germany, and it is possible to extend one’s stay in Germany. For personalised assistance on the requirements for obtaining this visa, contact us directly.
Setting Up a Business in Germany
Germany has a lot to offer when it comes to moving a business or expanding a company there. As one of the biggest countries in terms of population in Europe and one of the world’s strongest economies, there is no reason not to establish in Germany. Furthermore, it is a gateway to the rest of Europe due to its location and membership in the Schengen Zone. For those used to the busy, cosmopolitan city life of Hong Kong, many of Germany’s biggest cities (Berlin, Frankfurt, Munich, Cologne and Düsseldorf, among others) also offer an urban and diverse setting in which to establish a business.
Should your company require assistance in establishing itself in Germany, our legal team is here to help. The form of business that your company decides on will have huge implications regarding its tax affairs, the level of liability for those involved and the reputation it may enjoy in Germany. There will be differences in establishing a company in Germany compared to doing so in Hong Kong. Therefore, ensuring that your legal assistance is knowledgeable in the formation of companies is vital. At Schlun & Elseven, our attorneys will provide you with the advantages of the different forms of businesses in Germany and the advice as to what you need to get established.
Our Services for Hong Kong Clients
Moving to a new country can present challenges. Our lawyers are here to help when it comes to advising on visa options and settlement permits, legal representation inside and outside of courtrooms and providing you with the further legal assistance you will need in Germany. However, we can also assist in other areas and an extensive range of relocation services for individuals and businesses. We aim to help our clients move from Hong Kong to Germany and benefit from expert legal assistance in all their German legal affairs. Our main offices are located in Cologne, Düsseldorf and Aachen, but we also have conference room facilities in Berlin, Hamburg, Frankfurt, Munich and Stuttgart. Our legal team can be reached through various means after initial contact and are available through English and other languages should the client require them.