EU-permanent resident: Founding a company on the side?


I would like to start an import/export trade business of leather goods in Germany. I have a EU permanent residency. Can I start a business on the side along with my full-time job on this residency permit?


Dear Madam or Sir,

thank you for your inquiry and your interest in setting up a business in Germany. We will gladly give you more information. provides international professionals with information on working and living in Germany. Detailed information on setting up a business are is available on “Make it in Germany”.

Please consider the following information on residence requirements:

With the permanent EU residence permit you can live and work in Germany permanently. The permanent EU Residence permit (Section 9a AufenthG (German Residence Act)) is a permanent residence permit which is basically comparable with the settlement permit. With a settlement permit you can live with your family members in Germany with no restrictions. Moreover, you can obtain employment or become self-employed.

To get it right: For personal advice regarding visa issues, we recommend you to contact the hotline “Working and Living in Germany” under the telephone number +49 30 1815 – 1111. It is free of charge and the service is provided in German and English.

We wish you all the best!

Best regards,
Your Make it in Germany Team
*Please note that “Make it in Germany” do not issue or support any visa application even if you may be qualified for that. The information presented on Make it in Germany is a general service offering. Only the German missions and the foreigners’ authorities are responsible for the issuance of visa resp. residence permits. For further questions, please contact directly the respective authority.

Quelle: Justina Godesberg
Projekt "Make it in Germany"
Institut der deutschen Wirtschaft Köln e.V.

Juli 2021