GERMAN GOVERNMENT DECIDES ON DRAFT LAW FOR FAMILY REUNIFICATION FOR PEOPLE WITH SUBSIDIARY PROTECTION

On Wednesday the 9th of May, the German government has decided on a new draft law to make family reunification through a visa possible again for those with subsidiary protection. Subsidiary protection is an asylum status which is only valid for one year and can be renewed afterwards for another 2 years. The draft law is so far not in force, because the federal parliament still needs to vote on it. This will most likely happen in June or July. According to the draft law, only 1,000 visas per month will be issued for family members of beneficiaries of subsidiary protection in Germany. A visa application will only be successful if special humanitarian reasons apply. For example, if the family was separated for a long time, if there are underage children involved, or if the family members' life, health or freedom is in severe danger. Also, the chance of acceptance increases if the family member in Germany already has a good level of German and is not dependent on social welfare. In general, there are a lot of requirements to do family reunification over an embassy to Germany. For example valid passports and legalized certificates to proof that you are married or are the parents of underage children. You have to pay for everything on your own and waiting times to get an appointment are - at least in Turkey and Lebanon - very long. As the law is not in force so far, it is still unclear if it is currently possible to apply for an appointment at a German embassy if you want to apply for family reunification to a family member with subsidiary protection in Germany.