Now that you’ve found a place in Stuttgart, there’s only one more thing to do that makes it official: complete your residence registration. Don’t worry, you’ve already done the hard work, and we’ve set up an easy to follow 3-step plan to get you registered as soon as possible. In fact, Stuttgart is one of the cities that makes it even easier to register than most. Let’s dive in.
You might be wondering why you need to register in the first place. Well, it’s the official confirmation that you’re actually living in Stuttgart! Because of this, you need to register with the Stuttgart authorities within 2 weeks of your arrival! It’s also an important step for you to kickstart your life in Germany, as registration with the registration office (known as Bürgerbüro or Burgeramt) will give you access to 2 essential documents: Your Tax ID number (Steueridentifikationsnummer) and your certificate of registration. Without them, you won’t be able to start working, even if you’ve found a job!
This number is a unique identifier that makes sure the German tax authorities know how much they should be taxing you. So, this Steueridentifikationsnummer is something your employer will need before they can pay you your wages as an employee or an intern. If your employer doesn’t get this number on time, you’ll be taxed at a much higher rate than you would otherwise! So, another reason for you to get this over with quickly.
When you complete your registration, you’ll also receive a document called Anmeldebestätigung or Meldebescheinigung. These registration certificates are necessary when requesting a host of useful services, as they serve as a proof of residence at your address. This prevents you and other people from requesting services in someone else’s name or at the wrong address. You’ll need the certificate(s) for:
So, keep these documents safe and within easy reach. You’ll receive an Anmeldebestätigung upon your first registration at an address, and a Meldebescheinigung is more like an excerpt that can be requested in case you need to prove you do indeed still live at your address (for example if you’ve been living at the same address for a longer time).
Generally, your registration consists of 3 easy steps, some of which you can prepare before your arrival. We’ve already put together a list of the documentation you’ll need to submit, so that’s a good place to start. After that, you’ll have to plan an appointment with your nearest Bürgerbüro, timed within the first 2 weeks of your arrival.
In order to complete your residence registration, the city will need to know a number of things about you! Keep in mind that if you aren't moving to Stuttgart on your own, you’ll need to provide information and documentation about everyone moving with you (such as your spouse or children.
Here’s the list of required documents, so you can prepare them in advance:
Stuttgart is a beautiful city with many flavourful neighbourhoods. Luckily, each of these neighbourhoods also has its own Bürgerbüro! So, you can pick whichever one is closest to your new home, or whichever one has the most favourable time frame available. Registration is a bureaucratic process, so it can take up to 3-6 weeks for an appointment slot to become available. So make sure you plan your appointment on time, from abroad! You can do so through the online portal. Simply register for an account at the top right, and you can then access the online appointment planner for Stuttgart.
Now all that you need to do is show up on the day of your appointment! Don’t forget your documents and make sure you’re well on time, even if you have a set time slot. After all, punctuality is very much appreciated in Germany! In some cases, you may be assigned a number when you arrive (vorgangsnummer), so pay attention to the numbers called out or shown on screen. If you miss your number, you may need to plan a new appointment! Now that you have made it on time, all you have to do is wait your turn and present your documents to the clerk.
Now that your registration is complete, all that’s left to do is wait! It typically take 2-4 weeks to receive your documentation through the mail. So keep an eye on your mailbox and make sure you’ve updated it with a clearly legible sticker with your name on it! Now you're a real Stuttgart citizen and you can make time for planning fun things, like attending one of Stuttgart's many festivals!