If you intend to stay in Austria for a period longer than 6 months, you must apply for a residence permit and not for an entry permit (visa). Residence permits are issued by the authorities in Austria. They are solely issued for stays that exceed six months.
PLEASE NOTE that you must file your application for a residence permit with the Austrian Embassy or Consulate General before you actually leave for Austria. In general, you are not allowed to go to Austria as long as your application has not been approved.
Yet, spouses and minor children of EU & EFTA citizens who reside in Austria permanently may file their application after their arrival in Austria. The same is true for all foreign nationals who may enter Austria under the visa waiver-program (e.g. U.S. citizens, Canadians, Mexicans, Brazilians).
PLEASE NOTE that visa-free travel under the visa-waiver program is limited to 3 months out of any 6 months within the entire Schengen territory! To avoid having to leave Austria because a residence permit is not completed within the visa-free period (90 days), we recommend applying for a residence permit before leaving for Austria.
The residence permit, once issued, is to be picked up at the issuing authority in Austria. Part of the fee is payable at the time of the application and part of the fee at the time of the pick-up in Austria. In addition, (almost) all non-EU or non-EFTA citizens who both apply for a residence permit and intend to stay in Austria for more than 24 months must sign an Integration Agreement.
There are different types of residence permits in Austria:
I) Aufenthaltsbewilligung (i.e. temporary stay in Austria for a certain purpose = Temporary Residence Permit)
- Betriebsentsandter = employee sent on TDY (temporary duty) - Application form
- Rotationsarbeitskraft = rotational employee (company representative/manager/executive) - Application form
- Selbstständiger = self-employed individual - Application form
- Forscher = researcher (individual doing research at an Austrian academic, research, or educational institution) - Application form
- Künstler = artist (self-employed or employed) - Application form
- Sonderfälle unselbstständiger Erwerbstätigkeit = special employment cases, e.g. journalist, guest lecturer, au-pair, ... - Application form
- Student = student attending college/university in Austria - Application form
- Schüler = student attending primary or secondary school (grade 1-12) in Austria - Application form
II) Niederlassungsbewilligung (for foreigners who intend to live in Austria for a longer period of time = Permanent Residence Permit)
- any purpose, private reasons (e.g. move to Austria for your retirement)
- employment or self-employment under certain circumstances
- family members of aliens living in Austria, family re-unification
III) Aufenthaltstitel "Familienangehöriger" (issued to spouses and minor children of EU or EFTA citizens who permanently reside in Austria) - Application form
IV) Aufenthaltstitel "Daueraufenthalt - EG" (issued to foreign nationals who have had the right to stay in Austria for at least the last five years; Integration Agreement has already been fulfilled) - Application form
V) Aufenthaltstitel "Daueraufenthalt - Familienangehöriger" (issued to individuals who have held an Aufenthaltstitel "Familienangehöriger" (relative) for at least the last five years; Integration Agreement has already been fulfilled) - Application form
VI) Anmeldebescheinigung (EU & EFTA citizens [except Swiss] who both work and therefore take up residence in Austria; also issued to accompanying EU & EFTA spouses and minor children)
VII) Daueraufenthaltskarte (for non-EU & non-EFTA spouses and minor children of EU & EFTA citizens [except Swiss])
VIII) Red-White-Red Card
EU Blue Card
- If the applicant is a minor, the application must be signed by both parents or legal guardians. These signatures must be notarized by a notary public.
- The Austrian Embassy will accept only complete applications.
- Applications must be submitted in person (no exceptions).
- Public hours: Monday through Friday, 10:30 am until 01.00 p.m.; closed on U.S. and Austrian Legal Holidays
- Please note that there is no legal claim on obtaining the residency permit applied for.
- Please allow at least one month processing time since all applications must be sent to Austria.
The following documents (if applicable) must be submitted:
- valid and signed passport (passport must be valid for at least three months beyond date of return and must have a blank page to affix the residence permit)
- copies of previous passports
- Part of the consular fee must be paid at the time of your application and part of the fee has to be paid at the time of the pick up in Austria
- application form (see above I)) - completed and signed (available only in German; application forms pertaining to categories II) to VII) are listed on the website of the Austrian Federal Ministry of the Interior.)
- one recent picture (passport format, color, front view)
- original or notarized copy of birth certificate including apostille
- original Certificate of Good Conduct/Criminal Record with apostille (available at local police station; not older than three months)
- proof of health/travel/accident insurance (original letter from insurance company confirming coverage in Austria)
- proof of sufficient financial means (e.g. scholarship, letter of grants, bank statement of last two months [parent's account accepted for students only], other proof of income)
- proof of lodging in Austria (e.g. lease contract, ownership papers)
- Statement of Financial Liability (Haftungserklärung; available only in German) if stay in Austria is sponsored by someone residing in Austria (does not apply to au-pair applicants)
- one set of fotocopies of all supporting documents
Please note: All foreign documents can only be accepted with an apostille.
In addition to the above documents, the following items must be submitted, too:
- employee: work permit (issued by the Austrian Employment Service AMS), statement of salary or income, confirmation letter issued by employer
- self-employed: last income tax statement, contract letter, business plan, letter of agreement, etc.
- family reasons/reunion: marriage certificate, divorce certificate, death certificate, certificate giving evidence of relationship to another individual; students: original letter of admission to Austrian school or university/college
- au-pair: au-pair contract (signed by both au pair and host family), letter of certification (issued by the Austrian Emplyment Service AMS)
Proof of basic language proficiency in German
Third country nationals must submit proof of basic language proficiency in German when first applying for the following residence permit:
- Rot-Weiß-Rot – Karte plus
- Niederlassungsbewilligung – ausgenommen Erwerbstätigkeit
- Niederlassungsbewilligung – Angehöriger
Proof may be presented in the form of a publicly recognized language diploma or a language course certificate issued by a certified language school, confirming in writing that the individual concerned has reached at least a basic level of proficiency in the German language (level A1). The following language schools are recognized:
- Österreichisches Sprachdiplom Deutsch
- Telc GmbH or
- Österreichischer Integrationsfonds (ÖIF)
The diploma or the certificate may not be older than one year at the time of the application. Austrian representations abroad will be able to tell you which language schools in your country of origin are certified.
The following individuals are exempt from the obligation to provide proof:
- Individuals who are under-age at the time of their application
- Individuals for whom the procedure would present an undue burden due to physical or psychological health problems (these must be confirmed by a public health officer)
- Relatives of or holders of the following residence permits: the Austrian Red-White-Red Card, the EU Blue Card, or Daueraufenthalt-EG (the latter is accepted only if the person in question was initially in possession of the blue EU card).
PLEASE NOTE: Since the data on our website are constantly updated, please refrain from confirming the listed requirements by telephone.
FURTHER DOCUMENTATION MAY BE REQUIRED ON A CASE-TO-CASE BASIS
Embassy of Austria
3524 International Court, NW
Washington, D.C., 20008
Consulate Office Hours:
Monday through Friday,10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.
(except Austrian and U.S. holidays )