Anmeldung means registration in German and is the most important first step when moving to (or within) Berlin or anywhere in Germany. Anyone intending to stay in Germany for a longer period of time is required to register their residency. You are required to get registered within 14 days from the moment you officially move into your residence.
Why do I need to register my residence and what happens if I don't?
Generally, registration is crucial for being able to settle in Berlin. You need the registration to open a bank account, obtain health insurance etc. If you fail to comply to the the 14 day deadline, there can be fines.
Documents required to register a residence in Berlin
Before making an appointment for you registration, make sure you have all your documents ready.
Here is what you will need to bring:
Bring your valid passport or identification card.
Anmeldeformular (registration form)
Don't forget your completed registration form (Anmeldeformular).
By law, your landlord has to provide you with a confirmation of your residency within 14 days of signing your rental contract. If you are the owner yourself, you need to provide the corresponding pages from the "Grundbuch" (land register) that prove that you are the owner.
Possibly: Marriage Certificate
Only if you have one and your partner registers with you; also bring children's birth certificates if they register with you - they are optional, but will help to make sure you get the correct income tax bracket.
Where do I bring all the paperwork for my residence registration?
Once you have all required documents ready, you will need to take them to a local registration office called Einwohnermeldeamt or Bürgeramt. It is advisable to make an appointment before you go in order to avoid long waiting times or worse, being denied service and sent home. In Berlin you can make appointments online (see down below).
Unfortunately there is no option to register your residency online. However, in case you are busy, you can send a friend, family member or one of our experts from Amtio on your behalf to have a care-free registration process.
How to find the right location
There are several locations you can visit. We recommend you to research for the nearest location before you make an appointment to avoid long travel time.
Note: Remember to double check opening times and read individual policy of your chosen location, as some offices work on an appointment-only basis.
How do I get an appointment at the registration office?
Booking an appointment
You have the option to attend without an appointment, however we strongly advise you to book an appointment, since waiting times are usually very long and some offices will reserve the right to decline service without an appointment. You will find the adresses of some of the bigger offices below.
As aforementioned, you can book an appointment online here. We have answered the most important questions concerning the residency registration appointment below:
Do I need to attend the appointment myself? You do not need to go there by yourself. If you don´t feel comfortable with your German yet or simply don´t want to deal with German bureaucracy and spend your time at the registration office, you can ask someone you know to go for you or use our care-free service. Click below for more info:
How do I make an appointment online to register in Berlin?
Click on your preferred Bürgeramt location - you can either choose from the map or scroll down through the list of locations
On the next page, scroll down again to AngeboteneDienstleistungen ("offered services") and select Anmeldung einer Wohnung ("Residency registration")
On the next page you should find a button that says Termin hier buchen ("Book appointment here")
Note: It is very common in Berlin that appointments for Anmeldung at the Bürgeramt are booked out for several weeks or months in advance. If the location you want is booked, remember that you can go to any Bürgeramt, so in case you urgently need one, you can choose any free appointment, regardless of the location. Worst case you can also go early in the morning without an appointment. If neither is possible for you, reach out to us at Amtio, we are experienced experts in the field of residency registration in Berlin, we will try to help you or personally get your residency registration done as quickly as possible.
What do I get at the end of the residence registration?
The official registration document
You will get a proof of residency registration in Berlin, Germans call Meldeschein or Anmeldebestätigung. Keep this document safe, since you are most likely going to need it for many official matters such as a German bank account , health insurance, library card and more.
Income-tax card called Steuer-ID
If you are eligible, you will also receive an income-tax card with your tax ID (Steuer-ID).
The federal tax office (Finanzamt) will automatically send it to your newly registered German address within a few weeks. Let your employer know your tax ID so they can use it to deduct applicable taxes regarding your income and social security.
Note: Do not confuse the tax ID (Steuer-ID) with the tax number (Steuernummer), which is a tax number necessary for freelancers only. (The tax number has to be requested from the tax office separately - Read "Getting A Freelance Steuernummer" from Finanzamt in Berlin.)
Extra Info: What is Kirchensteuer and do I have to pay it?
On your registration form, you will be requested to state your religion, a field you can also just leave blank. Nevertheless, if you want to be officially registered as Catholic, Protestant or any other Christian religion, you are required to pay a religious tax on their annual income tax bill called church tax ("Kirchensteuer") which is normally around 9 percent of the annual income tax.
Note: If choosing not to pay church tax in Germany you will not be eligible to receive communion, confession or get married in a German church.