Certain Labor Rules Apply to International Students
Both international and domestic students in Germany can work to earn money while they study, but there are some restrictions. The tasks do not necessarily have to be related to their studies.
Rules for Working International Students in Germany
International students from the European Union, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, and Switzerland have the same rights as German students. However, just like German students, there are some insurance contributions if they work more than 20 hours per week.
For international students from other countries, special legal regulations apply:
- International Students from other countries are not allowed to be self-employed (Selbstständig) or freelancers (Freiberuf).
- They are allowed to work 120 full days or 240 half days per year maximum.
- Students who want to work more than the maximum allowed days need permission from the Federal Employment Agency (Zustimmung der Agentur für Arbeit) and the foreigners’ office (Ausländerbehörde). Approval depends on the situation in the labor market in the surrounding.
- There is an exception if the student has a job as an academic assistant – there is no working days limit. However, students should inform the foreigners’ office about this job.
- International students in language and preparatory courses may work only during recess and with permission from the Federal Employment Agency and the foreigners’ office.
International students from other countries who break the labor law may be deported from Germany.
Searching for a Job
Jobs for students can be found in the regional offices of the Federal Employment Agency (Bundesagentur für Arbeit) as well as at student services at larger higher education institutions. The best way for finding a job is online job exchanges – companies are looking for part-time jobbers, especially students. The best job for any student will be in some way associated with the student degree program.
Since October 2022, 12 € per hour stands as the minimum wage for every employee in Germany.
Knowing the German language is a benefit while searching for a job. English can help you, but in international companies only.
Can Students Work Two Mini-Jobs?
Yes, students can work several mini-jobs side by side, but the total earnings from all jobs must not exceed 520 € per month. If they earn more than 520 €, then all jobs are subject to insurance and therefore no mini-jobs.
Every student can be employed in a mini-job and earn up to 520 € per month without paying taxes. But, Students must have a tax number from the tax office for a part-time job that isn’t a mini-job. In this case, a certain amount will be calculated from wages every month. Though, students can get this money back at the end of the year by submitting a Tax return (Steuererklärung).
Anyone who is employed in Germany usually pays social security contributions. These include expenditures for health insurance (Krankenversicherung), nursing care insurance (Pflegeversicherung), pension (Rentenversicherung), and unemployment insurance (Arbeitslosenversicherung). Students do not have to pay social security contributions if they work less than three months at a stretch or less than 70 days throughout the year.
If the student works more than 20 hours per week, there is an obligation for health, unemployment, and nursing care insurance contributions.
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