This article post contains pieces of information about a Filipino spouse visa to Germany. An FRV is also known as Family Reunion Visa comes with different categories under it such as a spouse, children, or marriage. In this post, I am writing specifically about Spouse Visa as I acquired it myself in 2019. Everything written here is also based on experience, as well as from thorough research and reading. I hope to give you light or guidance if you’re planning to take the same process.
This post is for you if;
- you’re a Filipino, married to a German national and applying for a Filipino spouse visa
- you’re living in the Philippines
- you want to get some ideas or insights how to process FRV to Germany from the Philippines
- you have some questions how FRV works
So without further ado, let’s get the wheels spinning, shall we?
Updated January 2022.
Filipino spouse visa to Germany – where to begin
When I applied for my Filipino spouse to Germany back in 2019, the process I think as of this writing (2022) is relatively the same. However, some things have changed due to the pandemic. Nevertheless, I will walk you through everything I know, experienced, read and research. You’re welcome.
But first things first.
Simply go to this site and fill out the necessary information. After filling it out, and after around 30 minutes, you will receive a confirmation via email with your reference number. Within several weeks later, then you will receive another email about the possibility of an appointment at the embassy.
Yes, it will take weeks before you can finally have your appointment. In my case, for example, I got an email about my scheduled appointment on July 17, 2019. I applied in April. That’s three months later. In the meantime, it will give you a chance to gather and prepare all your documents or requirements.
These days since the pandemic, the application probably for FRV to Germany from the Philippines had been increased. But also, the number of applicants that the embassy is accepting has been lessened.
Spouse visa requirements- everything you need to prepare
- APPLICATION FORM – Two print-outs of your duly filled and signed application form. You can download this here.
- PASSPORT PHOTO – Three biometrical passport photos, with one glued to each application form
- VALID PASSPORT – Valid passport with which you would like to travel to Germany
- BIRTH CERTIFICATE – PSA issued birth certificate
- MARRIAGE CERTIFICATE (if the marriage took place in Germany, the German marriage certificate –“Heiratsurkunde” – is accepted as a Xerox copy or fax.
- CENOMAR -CRS Form No. 4 or PSA CRS Form No. 5 Advisory on Marriages regarding the appearance of the applicant’s name in the National Indices of Marriages; this document must not be older than six (6) months from the date of issuance. Suppose married abroad, “Report of Marriage” (also PSA), to apply for competent PHL consulate.
- COPY OF YOUR SPOUSE’S IDS – 2 Xerox copies of the federal identity card (front- and back page) OR passport and registration card of the person living in Germany (your spouse) and, where applicable, a Xerox copy of his/her valid residence permit in Germany (only when he’s non-German); these documents do not have to be authenticated.
- INFORMAL INVITATION LETTER – Informal invitation letter from the person living in Germany ( Your spouse.) with whom you wish to be reunited with confirmation of your wish to live together in Germany. ( you can see the sample below)
- Visa fee €75
*Note: The Visa fee is waved for spouses.
Additional requirements (if it’s applicable to you)
Furthermore, to the spouse (this is you) (also for applicants with previous residence permits):
- If you were divorced abroad: Divorce sentence and PSA Index Certificate CRS Form No. 5 (Advisory on Marriages) with an annotation of the divorce
- If your previous marriage was annulled in the Philippines: Annulment court order and PSA Index Certificate CRS Form No. 5 (Advisory on Marriages) with an annotation of the annulment
- If you were a widow(er): Death certificate and PSA Index Certificate CRS Form No. 5 (Advisory on Marriages)
- A1 CERTIFICATE – Proof of the visa applicant’s basic knowledge of the German language (equivalent to level A1 of the European language norm), recently issued by ALTE-certified tester. It is not possible to submit the document at a later date)
- VISA FEE -(applicants below 18 years: €30), you can pay in cash in Philippine Pesos at the current exchange rate. (But in this case, you won’t need to pay the visa fee given that your spouse is a German citizen, and famly members of EU Citizen). Otherwise, you need to pay.
Helpful read: A1 German Exam & Certificate. Your complete guide
Appointment day, waiting & processing period
My appointment time was between 9:00-10:30 am. I arrived an hour earlier to make sure I won’t be late, thus losing my chance for my schedule. The staff security asked me to leave all my stuff, including my phone, at the locker. Only the necessary documents were allowed to bring inside the waiting area.
He gave me a number and back to my seat. Finally, the officer called my last name. I was beyond excited and nervous at the same time upon handling all my documents. Before she scrutinized them all, she also asked me if I were applying for the FRV spouse visa to Germany, obviously, I was. One by one. Soon she said, let’s have a quick interview. So we did. She asked me many things about my husband, our relationship, our wedding, and many more.
On the other hand, due to the pandemic, consequently, only a few slots and appointments are only given to applicants. Also, you must have your booked appointment before entering the main building of RCBC Makati.
You can see the full script of the interview.
Filipino spouse visa to Germany- The final result
On August 15, 2019, I received an email from the German Embassy in Manila that my spouse visa to Germany was ready. Hence, I needed to give them my passport. I couldn’t contain my excitement. Of course! Who wouldn’t! During that time when there was no coronavirus existing yet, there were two ways to send it to them. One was via a courier, LBC, DHL, etc., or I could hand it personally through their office. Since I was constantly in Manila for my German language studies, I opted to hand it to them personally.
After bringing my passport to the Embassy in person, I was told again to wait or come back again in five (5) working days.
Five days later, I came back to pick it up. I was over the moon. My FRV Spouse visa to Germany was granted!
I flew to Germany in November 2019. Three (3) months later.
Filipino FRV spouse visa to Germany from the Philippines- tips and advice
In my experience, despite that, it has been nearly three (3) years already, I can say that the process it almost the same. Except that we needed face masks and face shields now. Not to mention the vaccine card to present upon entering the building. In addition to that, the traveling to Manila if you’re from the province.
That said, here are some of my helpful tips and advice to get your FRV spouse’s visa to Germany’s application smoother.
- Make a checklist of every single document that you need to prepare and check whether it’s been gathered.
- Actually, there is one on the website that you need to check the boxes and sign.
- Gather all your documents. Make sure you’re not overlooking even a single item as it’s vital to your spouse visa application.
- Check all the spellings of your name, the date of your birth, certificates,the email address that you wrote in the application, among many others.
- Arrange all the documents based on how it was written on their website accordingly.
- Photocopy each document as requested. Also, all the originals are attached to it.
- The officers who will be scrutinizing your documents are very meticulous and thorough.
- You should not be showing your teeth on your visa photo. YES, you can’t grin!
- If you have any further question or unsure regarding your visa application, or documents, ask away! The German embassy is only one mail away.
Common faqs- answered
In this section, I will try to answer the common questions I usually get and heard from people, alongside the answers and based on personal experiences and careful selective research.
DO I REALLY NEED AN A1 CERTIFICATE?
I know, like you, I was also worried about not having to present an A1 certificate. I’ve read on the German embassy’s website that the A1 is a must, hence, a Spouse visa application without this might be a cause of rejection. But to cut it short, the answer is YES. You need it.
Most importantly, your certificate must be less than 1 year old. You can take a German course online or do a self-study. It’s your personal preference.
There are some exceptions though.
What are these?
If, you can prove that you excellently speak the German language, or have a B1 certificate. For more information, you can check here.
WHAT IF I HAVE A PROBLEM WITH MY BIRTH CERTIFICATE?
What kind of problem? If yours is the same as mine before, the middle name was different, well, you need to get it fixed. You must know the harsh truth that the embassy is quite sharp at eyeing your documents. What I mean to say is, even a tiny single detail like the wrong last name of your father, wrong information of your birthplace, will have to proper and correct.
Hence, if you see one of these issues already, you know what to do. Get it fixed straight away!
I know that it sounds a bit harsh but getting your FRV spouse visa to Germany even if your spouse is a Filipino is essential.
Special/additional requirements for Spouse visa
Please see the list of documents that I mentioned above. You should provide them with 1 original and 2 photocopies of each of these documents. No more, no less, unless they required you so.
DO MY GERMAN HUSBAND AND I NEED PROOF OF FUNDS OR FORMAL OBLIGATION?
- In our case, they did not require to submit any proof of funds. This is however, always depends on the case of each individual. I think that the embassy will base the requirement of your funds or formal obligation (from your husband) on your documents, or probably the job of your husband. This is I think because they wanted to know how he can financially support and provide for you. That said, If the German Embassy Manila required you to submit one, then you have to abide by it.
HOW LONG WOULD IT TAKE TO RECEIVE THE spouse visa?
- Because of the pandemic, it may take a little while, so please be patient. While in my application before, the German Embassy Manila mentioned to me that the waiting time was between 1-3 months. Luckily, I got mine in less than 1 month which I was grateful for.
- Depends on the examination of your documents. Don’t worry too much. Enjoy your time in the Philippines. I can tell ya, you’ll miss it!
CI or Criminal Investigation & Spouse Visa validity
Will they conduct CI or Criminal Investigation or let’s say background check on me?
I believe they didn’t perform CI on me. I think that the CI will be based on the documents you’ve submitted and the result of your interview, so get your facts straight. Whatever you had submitted must be matched with your answers upon the interview. Never, ever don’t fake your documents. The embassy has the means to check the legitimacy of your documents.
- When I was filling out the information on the website, there was a written how long will I want to stay in Germany. You can see this too once you fill it out. I wrote ninety (90) days, which is three (3) months. Understandably, I was applying for a spouse visa which is permanent. Therefore, when the officer during the interview asked me how long should I want to stay, I said what I had written. Simple.
THAT SAID, WHEN CAN YOU USE THE SPOUSE VISA ONCE IT’S APPROVED?
- You may start using it or fly to Germany on the date of your visa. For example, if your visa begins on April 1, then that’s the validity begins.
SHOULD YOU BOOK YOUR FLIGHT TO GERMANY ALREADY?
- As long as you don’t have your visa on your hand, yet, I advice to not book it. Also, the Embassy won’t require you yet to have a booked flight unless your Spouse visa to Germany has been granted.
Other useful pieces of information for your spouse visa application to Germany
WHAT IF I WAS NOT ABLE TO COMPLETE ALL THE DOCUMENTS BEFORE THE GIVEN APPOINTMENT TIME/ SCHEDULE?
- As I’ve mentioned, and I hate to say this, you cannot go with incomplete documents. This is very basic and simple. The German Embassy Manila was mighty strict with documents and procedures. You may move your appointment if you’re missing a few. Remember, every single document is crucial for your application. But note that it will take you 3-4 months waiting before getting a new one. So I suggest, gathering and completing everything within a given period of time.
DO I NEED TO CHANGE MY LAST NAME TO MY HUSBAND’S?
On the other hand, well, not yet. At least in my case. On the day I submitted all my documents at the Embassy, I also asked the officer if I could already change my passport from Mendoza to Kaiser because I was already married. All the documents I submitted for the application for a spouse visa to Germany were under my last name. (That was I was still single). Thus, won’t complicate and prolong the process. Also, the officer said it’s not necessary. Later, I could do it once arrived in Germany.
Moving to Germany with Spouse visa on hand
LASTLY, CAN YOU ALREADY MOVE TO GERMANY WITH YOUR SPOUSE VISA?
Of course! But don’t get too excited yet as there are still plenty of things to prepare. I know right? This pandemic makes our life more complicated and stressful. I hate to spoilthe happiness, but make sure you have completed the necessary requirements upon leaving the country.
What are these that you simply can’t overlook upon moving to Germany? Read along. Go on, won’t bite you.
Sample of informal letter of invitation from your spouse
Dear Madam/ Sir,
Good day! My name is ( your spouse’s name, his age) and I want to invite my beautiful spouse ( your name) to my homeland, Germany, to live with me. I have known her for ( state how many years ), and we have been together as a couple for ( state how many years). I’d be delighted if we could reunite especially during this pandemic time. Below are the complete documents we’ve both prepared for our Spouse visa application. Should you need any other information or requirements, we’d be more than willing to provide them.
I am hoping for your kind consideration and thank you in advance.
( Your spouse’s name).
You can copy this sample but make sure you edit the personal information. You can also make your own, it’s up to you. The informal invitation letter from your spouse normally is relatively simple, and basic. Don’t try to make it complicated and add too flowery words. It only has to clearly state that your spouse wanted to reunite with you in his homeland, Germany. It’s an informal invitation, after all!. Based on experience, we wrote a similar concept and the embassy didn’t ask me to rewrite it.
Common mistakes to avoid for applying for your FRV spouse visa to Germany
Being a Filipino, sometimes we tend to overlook or forget something. Worse, we totally cannot avoid some mistakes. But when it comes to applying for your FRV, I guess you’d be extra careful. Remember, your future is in your hands. That said, here are some common mistakes, errors to avoid, especially if you’re coming from the Philippines.
- Having incomplete documents. Remember, missing even only one single requirement of the document will result in the non-processing of your application, worse, rejection.
- Not valid documents such as old style birth certificates. You need the one from PSA, take note!
- Forgetting to report your marriage when married abroad. Don’t do that!
- Setting your appointment at the embassy and not attending it. Or, being late! Gosh, don’t do that! Don’t perform the Filipino time here, really! – This will definitely result in an appointment void. And may lose the chance for getting a new one, soon.
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How to get a FRV spouse visa to Germany as a Filipino-in a nutshell
In a nutshell, applying for a Spouse visa to Germany as a Filipino shouldn’t be more than complicated, except the travel to the big city. Simply follow these steps;
- Register on the website
- Wait for the email confirmation
- Gather and prepare all your documents
- Attend your scheduled appointment and submit all the necessary documents
- Pay the visa fee if applicable
- Answer the interview briefly and honestly
- Wait for your visa to get approved
- Visa approved
- Congratulations, you made it!
- You’re ready to fly to Germany.
*Note: All Long term national visas to Germany such as Spouse, Children, or Marriage are submitted directly to the German Embassy Manila. Other types of Schengen Visas are done through the service of VFS.
THE GERMAN EMBASSY IN MANILA
25/F Tower 2 RCBC Plaza
6819 Ayala Avenue, 1200 Makati City
Metro Manila, Philippines
Thanks for reading. I hope you got the answers you were looking for. I’d appreciate it if you’d share it with anyone who you think needs it. Lastly, please don’t send me a message to any of my social media accounts. I’m not always hanging out there. Please leave a comment below, I am glad to reply as soon as I can!Catherine
This post was originally published on diekaisersonacamper.com and has been updated.