There are four arrangements to be done after arriving in Berlin in order to be able to enroll at the Studierendenverwaltung (Student Administration Office) of Freie Universität Berlin and to gain the benefits of a student status (it is assumed at this point that you already have a flat and a leasing contract).
The first path leads to a Local Citizens’ Office (Bürgeramt) where you have to register. This registration is necessary to open a bank account, for health insurance and to enroll at Freie Universität.
For registration during drop-in hours at a Local Citizens’ Office in Berlin you need to fill in the Meldeformular (registration form) and the appendices as well as bring your passport and your rent agreement. You need to take a number at the info desk and wait for your call. Make an online appointment as soon as possible, before your arrival!
2. Opening a bank account
To open a bank account it is essential to have an official place of residence in Germany. A giro account is necessary in Germany for all transactions (payment of scholarship or grant, bills, rent, etc). You can open this at a bank or branch of the Deutsche Post (German post office). You will need your passport, your registration card (as proof of residence) and an official statement or certificate to show that you are a post-graduate student and thus have an income of more than €1250.
Overview: banks in Berlin [German]
3. Health Insurance
As a doctoral student you are no longer classified as an ordinary student by the public health insurers and are therefore released from the obligation of insurance. This means that you may opt for the government-regulated health insurance, for which you must pay a percentage of your income (amount dependent on the level of insurance).
On request we can help you to choose and set up your insurance.
In order to insure yourself with most companies you will require a German bank account. Some companies also require a proof of residence, proof of acceptance as a doctoral student and a residence permit for at least one year (or authorisation to stay) as well as your passport.
Further information [German]
To enroll as a doctoral student you will need to take the following documents to the matriculation office of the student administration (Studierendenverwaltung):
- Original notification of acceptance as a doctoral student
- Your completed application for matriculation form
- A photocopy of your identity documents with your name, surname and term time address
- Original degree certificate
- Original proof of university entrance qualification
- Proof of exmatriculation from the last attended (German) university (only applicable to foreign students who have studied in Germany)
- Passport (with visa), if you are not a German citizen
- Cash card for payment of the semester fees (for an additional fee, these may also be paid in cash)
After receiving approval to complete a doctorate you have four weeks to matriculate at Freie Universität Berlin (FU).