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Settlement Permit – Special Cases of Gainful Employment

The “Settlement Permit – Special Cases of Gainful Employment” is intended for nationals of third countries who want to pursue work in scientific research and teaching in Austria and do not have a Hosting Agreement with a certified research institution or a research institution that does not require certification. This also includes researchers who are financed freely or by foreign research institutions.

Conditions for the granting of a settlement permit

You can find all necessary requirements for this permit in the checklist at the end of the page.

If you want to start your research work immediately after entry, you have to apply for a visa for gainful employment (visa D, the addendum “Gainful employment” will be added to the visa) at the competent Austrian representative authority in your country of residence before entering Austria. When applying for the visa you have to submit all documents that are required for a “Settlement Permit – Special Cases of Gainful Employment” (see Checklist). Only with such a visa you are permitted to start your research activities immediately after entry.

After entering Austria you can apply for a “Settlement Permit – Special Cases of Gainful Employment” at the locally competent residence authority in Austria. We recommend that you apply as soon as possible after entry. In any case you have to submit your application in person.

In principle it is possible to submit an application for a “Settlement Permit – Special Cases of Gainful Employment” at the locally competent residence authority in Austria after lawful entry and during a lawful stay (e.g. without requiring a visa or with a visa). Please note, however, that taking up research activities in Austria without a visa for gainful employment is only permitted after receipt of the “Settlement Permit – Special Cases of Gainful Employment”.

Please note that the application does not permit you to overstay your visa-free stay or the period of residence defined in your visa. Alternatively, you may also submit your application at the competent Austrian representative authority in your country of residence and wait for their decision there (in this case, however, a longer processing time is to be expected).

Insurance

In principle travel health insurance must be taken out to enter Austria. Please note that this insurance must be valid in Austria and provide sufficient cover for various health issues (insurance cover well over 30,000 Euro, including guarantee to cover possible recovery and repatriation costs).

Third-country nationals will only receive a residence title if they can additionally provide proof of having a “health insurance covering all risks”. Travel health insurance is only sufficient for the period until a “health insurance covering all risks” can be taken out after entry.

Researchers who are employed by an Austrian research institution fulfil the requirement of a “health insurance covering all risks” due to the statutory insurance associated with this employment – provided that their salary exceeds a certain limit (Geringfügigkeitsgrenze) [EUR 446.81/month, as of 2019] employees will automatically be covered by health insurance (and also accident and pension insurance).

Researchers who are staying in Austria within the framework of a sabbatical or who are financed by foreign research institutions may take out private health insurance to fulfil the requirement of having a “health insurance covering all risks”.

Validity period

If all requirements are met, the “Settlement Permit – Special Cases of Gainful Employment” will be issued for a period of 12 months. If you applied for a shorter term or your travel document is valid for a shorter period of time, your settlement permit will be issued for a shorter period.

Working

Researchers who are staying in Austria with a visa for gainful employment or a “Settlement Permit – Special Cases of Gainful Employment” are allowed to take up their planned research activities without requiring any further permits.

Renewal and change to another residence title

You have to apply for a renewal of your settlement permit at the competent residence authority in Austria before your settlement permit expires; however, at the earliest 3 months before expiry of the settlement permit. Until a decision about your application for a renewal is taken you are considered to be lawfully resident, even if your current settlement permit expires in the meantime.

Researchers who have been in possession of a “Settlement Permit – Special Cases of Gainful Employment” for at least two years may get a new “Settlement Permit – Special Cases of Gainful Employment” for three years. It is also possible to change to another residence title if you meet the conditions for it.

After a total settlement period in Austria of five years researchers may obtain the residence title “Permanent Residence EU” if they fulfil the requirements for this title.

Family members

The possible residence titles for family members* of holders of a “Settlement Permit – Special Cases of Gainful Employment” depend on the researcher's exact activities. You can find all necessary documents for both types of residence title in the checklist on the side of the page.

Family members of researchers working in research and teaching, in development and fostering of the arts or in arts teaching in public or private institutions or companies may apply for a “Red-White-Red Card plus”, which is not subject to quotas. As a rule they have to apply at the competent Austrian representative authority in their country of residence. If the family members are permitted to enter Austria without a visa, they may also apply for this permit in Austria. With a “Red-White-Red Card plus” family members enjoy free access to the labour market and may carry out any job without a work permit as long as the family relationship remains upright.

Family members of researchers working in teaching or research at an institution running university of applied sciences degree programmes or who pursue a scientific activity (or an education) at the Diplomatic Academy or the Security Academy may apply for a “Settlement Permit”; this permit is subject to quotas. As a rule they have to apply at the competent Austrian representative authority in their country of residence and await the decision of the authorities there. If the family members are permitted to enter Austria without a visa, they may also apply in Austria.

A “Settlement Permit” only permits self-employed work. Both types of family members have to prove that they have German language knowledge at A1 level when applying for the first time unless they do not intend to apply for a renewal of the residence title after a total stay of 24 months within 3 years or the fulfilment or exemption from the fulfilment obligation is assumed.

Moreover, family members have to prove that they have fulfilled the module 1 of the Integration Agreement within two years of receiving the residence title unless they will not apply for a renewal of the residence title after a total stay of 24 months within 3 years or the fulfilment or exemption from the fulfilment obligation is assumed.

Family members who have had a “Red-White-Red Card plus” for two years may apply for another “Red-White-Red Card plus” with a validity period of three years if they fulfil the module 1 of the Integration Agreement (see above).

In case of advanced integration (e.g. having fulfilled the module 1 of the Integration Agreement) family members who have had a “Settlement Permit” for two years may apply either for another “Settlement Permit” or – in connexion with an application for a change of purpose – for a “Red-White-Red Card plus” with a validity period of three years.

Family members who have had a “Red-White-Red Card plus” or a “Settlement Permit” for five years may apply for the residence title “Permanent Residence EU”, which will allow them to stay in Austria for an unlimited period of time.

* Spouses, partners in a civil union and unmarried minors. Spouses and partners in a civil union must be at least 21 years old at the time of application.

Please note

The “Settlement Permit – Special Cases of Gainful Employment” will be issued in credit card format with a photograph and also serves as an ID document. You should carry your “Settlement Permit – Special Cases of Gainful Employment” at all times to prove your entitlement to residence in Austria.

During its validity period your “Settlement Permit – Special Cases of Gainful Employment” entitles you to travel through other Schengen countries (Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland) and to stay in these countries for a maximum duration of 90 days within 180 days.

You have to register within 3 working days of arrival in Austria with the registration office at your place of residence.

Checklists

Checklist for a "Settlement Permit — Special cases of gainful employment"

You have to enclose the following documents (originals plus photocopies) with the personally signed application form:

  • Valid travel document
  • Birth certificate or equivalent document (only in case of first-time applications)
  • Passport-sized photograph according to theICAO criteria (colour photograph, size 3.5 x 4.5 cm)
  • Employment contract / preliminary contract / scholarship award notice / invitation letter of the hosting institution / letter of the home research institution (minimum funds to finance your stay in Austria [2019]: 933.06 Euro/month. If the rent for accommodation is higher than 294.65 Euro/month, you have to prove additional funds.)
  • Proof of a legal claim to accommodation in Austria according to the local standards (e.g. rental or subtenancy contract, legally valid preliminary contract, accommodation agreement (Wohnrechtsvereinbarung)
  • Police clearance certificate from your country of residence
  • Proof of health insurance covering all risks (unless you have or are going to have statutory health insurance)
  • For longer stays: school leaving certificate confirming your general university entrance qualification – this replaces the otherwise necessaryproof of German language knowledge at A1 level for first-time applications

It is recommended to submit all foreign documentsin legalised German translation as well as foreign documents and proofs (e.g. birth certificate, police clearance certificate, school leaving certificate) in legalised form according to the applicable regulations.

Costs: 160 Euro (120 Euro when submitting the application, 20 Euro when the permit is granted and 20 Euro fee for the collection of police identification data)

Checklist for family members of researchers with a "Settlement Permit — Special cases of gainful employment": "Red-White-Red Card plus" or "Settlement Permit"

You have to enclose the following documents (originals plus photocopies) with the personally signed application form ("Red-White-Red Card plus", "Settlement Permit"):

  • Valid travel document
  • Birth certificate or equivalent document (only in case of first-time applications)
  • Passport-sized photograph according to the ICAO criteria (colour photograph, size 3.5 x 4.5 cm)
  • Proof of a legal claim to accommodation in Austria according to the local standards (e.g. rental or subtenancy contract, legally valid preliminary contract of the husband/wife, accommodation agreement (Wohnrechtsvereinbarung)
  • Proof of the required minimum funds to finance your stay in Austria [2018]:1,363.52 Euro/month for couples and additionally 140.32 Euro for each child (e.g. by means of presentation of the husband/wife’s employment contract)
  • Proof ofhealth insurance liable to pay for medical treatment in Austria and covering all risks (unless family members are covered by the researcher’s statutory health insurance)
  • Proof of family relationship (e.g. marriage certificate or birth certificate)
  • Police clearance certificate from the country of residence
  • For longer stays: language diplomaproving German language knowledge at A1 level (must not be older than one year at the time of submission)

It is recommended to submit all foreign documents inlegalised German translation as well as foreign documents and proofs (e.g. birth certificate, marriage certificate) in legalised form according to the applicable regulations.

Costs: 120 Euro

Fee: 100 Euro (80 Euro when submitting the application plus 20 Euro the permit is granted; in case of minors 50 Euro when submitting the application plus 50 Euro when the permit is granted) as well as 20 Euro fee for the collection of police identification data (photo and signature)

Telephone requests

Monday to Thursday 10:00-12:00

General information

OeAD Contact Form

If you have any further questions regarding entry and residence beyond the information in the database, we will be happy to answer them personally if possible.

Contact form

We can only answer enquiries about entry and residence conditions related to studying, teaching or undertaking research in Austria. We cannot enquire or intervene on your behalf at the Austrian authorities.

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