Your selection "third countries | researcher | without residence title | stay for longer than 6 months | with hosting agreement" resulted in the following information:

Settlement Permit – Researcher

The "Settlement Permit – Researcher" is intended for nationals of third countries who are in possession of a doctoral/PhD degree or a degree allowing access to doctoral/PhD programmes and who are going to pursue scientific work in Austria that requires at least that level. Moreover, they need a Hosting Agreement with a certified research institution or a research institution that does not require certification.

Conditions for the granting of a Settlement Permit – Researcher

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 "Erwerb" ["gainful employment"] will be added to the visa) at the competent Austrian representative authority (embassy, consulate with power to issue visa) 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 – Researcher” (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 – Researcher” at the locally competent residence authority in Austria. If all necessary documents have been submitted, the authority will decide about your application within eight weeks; we, nevertheless, recommend that you apply as soon as possible after entry. In any case you have to submit your application in person.

Further on it is also possible to submit an application for a “Settlement Permit – Researcher” at the locally competent residence authority in Austria after lawful entry and during a lawful stay (e.g. visa-free 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 – Researcher”. Please also note, however, that the application does not allow 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 (embassy, consulate with power to issue visa) in your country of residence and wait for their decision there (in this case, however, a longer processing time is to be expected).

You will find all the requirements for granting a "Settlement Permit - Researcher" in the checklist.

Insurance

In principle a 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 EUR 30,000, including guarantee to cover possible recovery and repatriation costs and costs for treatment of the COVID-19 disease).

Third-country nationals will only get a residence title if they can additionally provide proof of having a health insurance "covering all risks". A 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 within the framework of a hosting agreement fulfil the requirement of a “health insurance covering all risks” due to the statutory insurance associated with this employment. Provided that the salary exceeds the limit ("Geringfügigkeitsgrenze") of EUR 475.86/month [as of 2021] employees will automatically be covered by health insurance (and also accident and pension insurance).

Validity period

If all requirements are met, the “Settlement Permit – Researcher” will be issued for a period of two years.
If the hosting agreement is for a shorter term, your settlement permit will be issued for the duration of your hosting agreement plus three 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 with a hosting agreement who are staying in Austria with a visa for gainful employment or a “Settlement Permit – Researcher” are allowed to take up the research activities stated in their hosting agreement without requiring any further permit.

Renewal and change to another residence title

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

Further information about the topic "renewal of residence title" can be found here.

Researchers, who have been in possession of a “Settlement Permit – Researcher” for at least two years, can apply for a “Red-White-Red Card plus” in Austria before their settlement permit expires. This permit will grant them unlimited access to the labour market.
Alternatively, if the requirements are still met, you may also apply for a renewal of your “Settlement Permit – Researcher”. It is also possible to change to another residence title if you meet the conditions for it.

Researchers, who have finished their research work, may also apply for a renewal of their "Settlement Permit – Researcher" for another 12 months to look for a job or set up a business. If your “Settlement Permit – Researcher” has been renewed for this purpose, you may only change it to a "Red-White-Red Card", a "Blue Card EU", a "Settlement Permit – Researcher" or a residence title “Family member” the next time.

After a total settlement period of five years in Austria researchers may obtain the residence title “Long-term Residence - EU” (“Daueraufenthalt – EU”) if they fulfil the requirements for this title.

Family members

Family members* of researchers holding a “Settlement Permit – Researcher” can apply for a “Red-White-Red Card plus”.

Family members of researchers can apply in person for a “Red-White-Red Card plus” at the locally competent residence authority in Austria after lawful entry and during a lawful stay (e.g. visa-free or with a visa). If all the necessary documents have been submitted, the residence authority will also decide about these applications within eight weeks.

Alternatively, it is also possible to submit the application at the competent Austrian representative authority (embassy, consulate with power to issue visa) in the country of residence (in this case, however, a longer processing time is to be expected).

Family members holding a “Red-White-Red Card plus” 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.

Within two years of the granting of the “Red-White-Red Card plus” family members have to prove having fulfilled module 1 of the Integration Agreement unless they do not apply for a renewal of the residence title after a total period of stay of 24 months within three years or the fulfilment or exemption from the fulfilment obligation is assumed.
When applying for the first time no proof of German knowledge is required. No quotas apply to the immigration of family members of holders of a “Settlement Permit – Researcher”.

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 one of the Integration Agreement (see above).

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

You can find all the requirements in the checklist.

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

During its validity period your “Settlement Permit – Researcher” entitles you to travel through and to stay in other Schengen countries (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) for a maximum duration of 90 days within a time period of 180 days.

You have to register within three working days of arrival in Austria with the registration office at the place of residence.
A registration with the registration office is not needed if you reside in a tourist accommodation (e.g., hotel, guest house, campsite, private room, AirBnB) for a maximum of 2 months.

Checklists

Checklist for a "Settlement Permit – Researcher"

You have to enclose to the application photocopies of the following documents with your personally signed application form (explanation of the application form) and additionally show only the originals:

  • Valid travel document
  • Passport-sized photograph according to the ICAO criteria (colour photograph, size 3.5 x 4.5 cm) not older than 6 months
  • minimum funds to finance your stay in Austria [as of 2021]:
    • EUR 1,000.48/month
    • for couples: EUR 1,578.36/month for both
    • for each child additionally: EUR 154.37/month
    If the rent for accommodation or instalment is higher than EUR 304.45/month, you have to prove additional funds.
  • Accommodation in Austria for a minimum of 3 months (e.g. rental agreement, accommodation agreement ["Wohnrechtsvereinbarung"]) in connection with the proof of the required funds to cover the living costs (the calculation is based on the presented costs for accomodation)
  • Proof of health insurance covering all risks (unless you have or are going to have statutory health insurance)

In case of first-time application additionally:

  • copy of the passport (all pages)
  • Birth certificate or equivalent document (legalised and afterwards translated)
  • Police clearance certificate from your country of residence (in individual cases also from your country of origin) not older than 3 months at the time of application (legalised and afterwards translated)
  • certificate of doctoral degree/PhD or a university degree with which you can have access to doctoral/PhD programmes
  • Hosting Agreement of a certified research institution or a research institution that does not require certification
  • Proof of a travel health insurance (covering costs of at least EUR 30,000, costs for treatment of the COVID-19 disease and guarantee to cover possible recovery and repatriation costs) valid in the Schengen area for the period between entering Austria and e.g. the start of coverage within the statutory insurance in Austria

In case of renewal application additionally:

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

Costs: EUR 160 (EUR 120 when submitting the application, EUR 20 when the permit is granted and EUR 20 fee for the collection of police identification data)
Additionally for foreign civil status documents (birth certificate, marriage certificate, civil union certificate) depending on the type of document: EUR 3,90, EUR 7,20 or EUR 14,30

The residence permit will be issued in credit card format with photograph and also serves as an ID document. It is recommended to carry it at all times.

Checklist for a "Red-White-Red Card plus" for family members of holders of a "Settlement Permit – Researcher"

You have to enclose to the application photocopies of the following documents to the personally signed application form (explanation of the application form) and additionally show only the originals:

  • Valid travel document
  • Passport-sized photograph according to the ICAO criteria (colour photograph, size 3.5 x 4.5 cm) not older than 6 months
  • Proof of the required minimum funds to finance your stay in Austria [as of 2021]:
    • for couples: EUR 1,578.36/month for both
    • for each child additionally: EUR 154.37/month
    If the rent for accommodation and/or instalment is higher than EUR 304.45/month, you have to prove additional funds. (e.g., by means of presentation of the husband's or wife's or parent's employment contract)
  • Proof of accommodation in Austria according to the local standards (e.g. rental or subtenancy contract, legally valid preliminary contract of husband or wife, accommodation agreement ("Wohnrechtsvereinbarung")
  • Proof of health insurance liable to pay for medical treatment in Austria and covering all risks (as a rule family members will be covered by the researcher’s statutory health insurance)

In case of first-time application additionally:

  • copy of the passport (all pages)
  • Birth certificate or equivalent document (legalised and afterwards translated)
  • Police clearance certificate from your country of residence (in individual cases also from your country of origin) not older than 3 months at the time of application (legalised and afterwards translated)
  • Proof of family relationship (e.g., marriage certificate, birth certificate, civil union certificate; legalised and afterwards translated)
  • Proof of a travel health insurance (covering costs of at least EUR 30,000, costs for treatment of the COVID-19 disease and guarantee to cover possible recovery and repatriation costs) valid in the Schengen area for the period between entering Austria and e.g. the start of dependent coverage within the statutory insurance of the spouse or parent

In case of renewal application additionally:

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

Costs: EUR 160 (EUR 120 when submitting the application, EUR 20 when the permit is granted and EUR 20 fee for the collection of police identification data)
Additionally for foreign civil status documents (birth certificate, marriage certificate, civil union certificate) depending on the type of document: EUR 3,90, EUR 7,20 or EUR 14,30

The residence permit will be issued in credit card format with photograph and also serves as an ID document. It is recommended to carry it at all times.