How to register with the Agentur für Arbeit

What you need to keep in mind when registering with the Agentur für Arbeit

The world of work in Germany can be complex and confusing, especially when it comes to registering with employment agencies. This article aims to inform you about the Federal Employment Agency known as Agentur für Arbeit (Agentur für Arbeit). We will explain why it is important to register with the Agentur für Arbeit and highlight the differences between the Agentur für Arbeit and the Jocenter. Lastly, we will also answer some frequently asked questions regarding this topic.

 

Who is this information relevant for?

This article is particularly relevant for jobseekers, those who are unemployed and individuals who need support with their job search or financial assistance. Additionally, this information is relevant for individuals who are interested in state-funded further education courses (Weiterbildung) and want to obtain an educational voucher (Bildungsgutschein). Employees who want to find out about their rights and responsibilities may also benefit from this article.

 

When is it necessary to register with the Agentur für Arbeit? 

Registering with the Agentur für Arbeit (Agentur für Arbeit) is necessary in order to access various support services, such as unemployment benefits, vocational training and placement services. These benefits may be essential to ensure financial security while unemployed and to find a new job as quickly as possible. However, registration is also important if you would like to take part in state-subsidised further training (Weiterbildung) to improve your chances on the German labour market. Registration with the Agentur für Arbeit is necessary if you want to obtain an educational voucher to finance this further training. You can find practical information on how to register here. 

 

Are the downsides to registering with Agentur für Arbeit? 

If you do not yet receive state financial support, you are probably not yet registered with the Agentur für Arbeit. However, if you would like to do further training and therefore want to apply for an education voucher, it is necessary to register with the Agentur für Arbeit. The registration process is straightforward and quick. If you register with the Agentur für Arbeit, there will be no complications or problems with your visa, residence permit or application for German citizenship, etc., as this is independent of the educational voucher. 

 

Which employment agency is responsible for me?

Your local employment agency is usually responsible for your area of residence. In Germany, the employment agency is organised regionally and each regional agency looks after the residents of its respective area. To find out which employment agency is responsible for you, you can take the following steps:

 

  1. Online search: Visit the website of the Agentur für Arbeit and use the search function for offices or the Jobcenter search function to find your local Agentur für Arbeit. All you have to do is enter your postcode or your place of residence.
  2. By telephone: You can also call the service number of the Agentur für Arbeit for advice. The general service number is 0800 4 555500 (free of charge).
  3. In person: A visit to your nearest employment agency can also be helpful. There you can find out in person whether you are at the right address or which office you need to contact.

These measures ensure that you find the right contact point and receive the necessary support and consultation.

 

Difference between Jobcenter and Agentur für Arbeit

The Agentur für Arbeit and the Jobcenter have different responsibilities. Both agencies support unemployed people in Germany. If you have already worked in Germany and paid into the unemployment system, you will go to the Agentur für Arbeit  if you become unemployed. The Jobcenter is responsible for citizens' allowance (Bürgergeld) and social benefits. If you have not worked in Germany before, are a refugee or have been unemployed for a long time, it is best to contact the Jobcenter. It is important to know that double registration is not necessary: If you are already registered with the Jobcenter, you do not need to register with the Agentur für Arbeit.


If you have a family reunion visa or a similar visa and do not receive state support, you are probably not registered with the Agentur für Arbeit or Jobcenter yet. However, to receive a Bildungsgutschein, it is necessary for you to register with the Agentur für Arbeit and not the Jobcenter.

 

Frequently asked questions: 

How do I register with the Agentur für Arbeit?

To register with the Agentur für Arbeit, you must register with your local employment agency. You can find more detailed information on registration here.

 

Should I actively look for a job as soon as I am registered with the Agentur für Arbeit?

In general, it is important to actively search for a job as soon as you are registered with the Agentur für Arbeit. The Agentur für Arbeit provides you with various job portals and search tools that can help you in your job search. You can also use the Agentur für Arbeit’s job portal to increase your chances of finding a new job. However, if you are interested in further training and/or do not receive unemployment benefits through the Agentur für Arbeit, you do not have to look for a job.

 

Should I accept job offers from the Agentur für Arbeit?

You should accept job offers that you receive from the Agentur für Arbeit if they are in your professional field and interest you. Reasonable work means that the job is adequately paid and corresponds to your skills and qualifications. Refusing to accept a reasonable job offer can have negative consequences for your entitlement to unemployment benefit. However, you do not have to accept every job offer you receive, but you can continue to look for one that better suits your goals and interests.  

 

What other obligations do I have after registering with the Agentur für Arbeit?

Once you have registered with the Agentur für Arbeit, there are various requirements that you should fulfil. However, this mainly applies if you are receiving unemployment benefits. If you are registered with the Agentur für Arbeit in order to receive an education voucher, then these requirements do not apply to you. 

  • Regular visits to the Agentur für Arbeit.
  • Active participation in vocational integration measures.
  • Proof of your own efforts to find a job.
  • Immediate notification of changes in your personal circumstances (e.g. taking up employment, change of address).

These measures not only help you to reintegrate into the labour market more quickly, but also secure your entitlement to benefits.

Registering with the Agentur für Arbeit is an important step towards receiving financial support and assistance in finding a job or funding for further training. 

 

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