Asylum procedure

How can I apply for asylum?

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In Germany, the right to asylum is determined in the Basic Law (Article 16a). It applies to people who are persecuted politically in their country of origin ("politisches Asyl"). In most cases, however, refugee protection is granted on the basis of the Geneva Convention on Refugees ("Flüchtlingsschutz"). In the case of refugee protection (Section 3 of the Asylum Act), persecution does not have to originate from the state; e.g. it also applies to Syrians who have fled from the so called Islamic State. If this right is granted, the recognition as a refugee follows.

Other forms of protection granted in the asylum procedure are subsidiary protection ("subsidiärer Schutz") or a suspension of deportation ("Duldung") based on the country of origin. In these cases a residence permit is issued for one year.

The asylum procedure

Do I have the right to asylum?

How do I apply for asylum?

Am I allowed to stay in Germany during the asylum procedure?

What happens at an interview?

Who participates in the interview?

How and when will I be informed of the decision?


It is very important to prepare well for your interview at the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees ("Bundesamt für Migration und Flüchtlinge" or BAMF). If you are unsure what is expected of you, watch this video or contact local support groups for help.