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Police clearance certificates

Applying for a police clearance certificate from abroad

I live in the UK – how do I apply for a German police clearance certificate?


Issuer

The Federal Office of Justice is responsible for issuing police clearance certificates, including for persons not resident in Germany.

Its address is as follows:

Bundesamt für Justiz
- Bundeszentralregister –
Sachgebiet IV21/IR
53094 Bonn
Germany

Official criteria

Only persons aged 14 or over can apply for a police clearance certificate. All applications must be made in person by the person to whom the certificate relates; no representative (including a lawyer) can apply.

The application must include your full personal details and be signed by you personally. Before you can send your application to Germany, it has to be officially certified. More here.

In the case of applicants living in the UK:

The Federal Office of Justice accepts certification by the following German offices:

Alternatively, certification can be done by the following non-German officials:

  • Notary public
  • Solicitor
  • City/town council*
  • Police Station*

*Some UK authorities may not do certifications of this kind.

Once it is officially certified, you must send the application by post to the Federal Office of Justice.

Fees

The Federal Office of Justice charges a fee of €13 for issuing a police clearance certificate.

A fee will also be payable for the certification of the application. If you have your application certified at a German diplomatic mission you will be charged €20, converted into pounds sterling (based on the exchange rate at the time). The fee is paid directly to the certifying authority. This fee is separate from the fee for the police clearance certificate itself. 

The fee of €13 for issuing the police clearance certificate is payable in advance. You can transfer the amount to the following account immediately prior to submitting your application:

Account no. 380 01005
Sort code 370 000 00
IBAN DE49370000000038001005
BIC MARKDEF1370
Deutsche Bundesbank Bonn branch

Payee: Bundesamt für Justiz
Ref.: Your reference number* or “Police clearance certificate + name”

*If you do not yet have a Federal Office of Justice reference number, please enclose your payment receipt with your postal application.

Alternatively, the issue fee can be paid by sending a cheque. Cheques must be made out in euros and drawn on a German bank.

Any fee charged by a foreign bank for cashing a (foreign) check must be paid on top of the fee paid for issuing the police clearance certificate. Please contact the foreign bank concerned if you have any questions regarding payments by cheque and any associated fees.

No certificate can be issued until the fee has been paid or appropriate proof of payment provided (§ 7 (2) JVKostO).

Miscellaneous

The certificate can only be sent to the applicant’s own private address. This address must therefore be provided on the form. The certificate can also, on request, be sent to a German authority if the certificate is required by that authority. In this case, you should provide the postal address of the authority together with the reason the certificate is required and/or the recipient’s reference number. The personal details designations appear in German, English and French on the certificate. No other languages are available. The content of the police clearance certificate is as stipulated in the Federal Central Register Act (Bundeszentralregistergesetz, BZRG).

Police Clearance Certificate

Information from the Federal Office of Justice about police clearance certificates can be found here.

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