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Information for application for a certificate of conduct for persons resident within the Federal Republic of Germany

Application to issue a certificate of conduct

Any individual who has reached the age of 14 is issued on request

  • with a certificate of conduct for personal purposes (private certificate of conduct), or
  • with a certificate of conduct for presentation to a German authority (certificate of conduct for official purposes).

If the person in question has a statutory representative, this person may also file an application. If the person in question has no legal capacity, only his/her statutory representative is entitled to file applications.

The application can be made to any registration authority with which the person making the application is registered. Applications may not be filed directly with the Federal Office of Justice. The person filing the application must prove their identity and, if they are acting as a statutory representative, their power of representation. The person concerned and their statutory representative may not have themselves represented on filing the application by a person holding a power of attorney, even if they are a lawyer.

Persons who are exempted from the obligation to register must make their application to the registration authority in whose district they are habitually resident. This also applies to persons with no fixed place of residence.

The certificate of conduct for personal purposes (private certificate of conduct) is only sent to the person making the application.

The certificate of conduct for presentation to a German authority (certificate of conduct for official purposes) is sent directly to the authority. The authority must grant inspection of the certificate of conduct to the person making the application on request. The person making the application may require that the certificate of conduct, if it contains entries, is first of all sent to him/her by a Local Court of his/her choice for inspection. The registration authority must inform the person making the application of this possibility. The Local Court may only permit inspection by the person making the application in person. The certificate of conduct is to be passed on to the authority after inspection or, if the person making the application opposes this, is to be destroyed by the Local Court.

Fee for issuing a certificate of conduct

The fee for the certificate of conduct is 13 €. It is collected by the registration authority.

Overcertification of a certificate of conduct and issuance of an Apostille

Authorities of various foreign states sometimes require police certificates of good conduct to be overauthenticated by the Federal Office of Justice, and may also demand an Apostille to be issued by the Federal Office of Administration in Cologne. The overauthentication of the certificate of conduct is a precondition for issuing an Apostille.

Overauthentication can be applied for either at the same time as filing the application to issue the certificate of conduct or – if the person making the application already has the certificate of conduct – may be lodged subsequently by presenting the original certificate of conduct. The application may be made orally, in person, or in single written form to the register authority at the addresses below:

For personal appearance:

Federal Office of Justice
Visitors Service
Adenauerallee 99–103
53113 Bonn

Opening times:

Monday – Wednesday: 7.30 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.

Thursday: 7.30 a.m. – 3.30 p.m.

Friday: 7.30 a.m. – 2.00 p.m.

For written applications:

Federal Office of Justice
Sachgebiet IV 31
53094 Bonn

Both with applications for overauthentication, and when applying for an Apostille, the country is to be stated in which the certificate of conduct is to be presented.

The person making the application must ascertain for themselves whether the overauthentication of a certificate of conduct, and where appropriate also the issuance of an Apostille, is necessary. The appropriate information is generally provided by the embassies and consular representations of the countries in which the certificate of conduct is to be submitted.

The fee for overauthentication is 20 € per certificate of conduct. It is independent of the fee for the issuance of the certificate of conduct. Overauthentication cannot be carried out until after receipt of the fee or presentation of proof of payment.

Payment may be effected directly on personal appearance and, in case of a written application, by sending a crossed cheque, or by transfer to the account of the Federal Office of Justice given below:

Deutsche Bundesbank, Cologne Branch
IBAN No.: DE49370000000038001005
BIC/swift No.: MARKDEF1370
Purpose:  (file reference of the event - if known - or the forename and the surname of the person making the application)

If the amount is transferred, the carbon copy of the transfer order is to be forwarded to the Federal Office of Justice – if possible together with the application to issue the certificate of conduct.

Both when sending a crossed cheque and when transferring the fee, the purpose should be stated either as the file reference of the event (if known) and/or the forename and the surname of the person making the application.

The application to issue an Apostille is to be addressed to the Federal Office of Administration in Cologne, Division II B 4, 50728 Köln. If the application is to be made at the same time as the application to grant overauthentication, it may also be forwarded to the Federal Office of Justice in order to simplify matters. In this case, the certificate of conduct is to be forwarded to the Federal Office of Administration in Cologne to issue an Apostille once it has been overauthenticated – without the person making the application receiving notification of its submission.

The fee for issuing the Apostille is separately levied by the Federal Office of Administration in Cologne, and is not to be transferred to the Federal Office of Justice. It does not have to be paid in advance.

E-Mail:

As stated above, applications to issue police certificates of good conduct must be made to the competent registration authority. It is therefore not possible to make direct applications by e-mail to the Federal Office of Justice. For reasons of data protection, and in view of a volume of approx. 40,000 pieces of information per day, the Federal Office of Justice is also unable to answer any enquiries sent by e-mail as to the status of the procedure for issuing a certificate of conduct that has already been applied for.

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