Car Registration / Kako registrirati avto – 4.8.2014

Well the procedure is not all that different than the one in Slovenia. You just have to accept that you will have to do three things with three different people and offices: technical inspection of the Vehicle, Insurance and the formal registration. In Slovenia you can do these thing all in one place if you go to a special publicly authorized garage. Before I begin to describe the procedure, let me just say that all these steps were done in German. No one we talked to knew how to speak English – not one. So we were lucky and grateful that a colleague of Paula, Zina helped us with the insurance and the registration process – she went with Paula to the office to be a translator. Zina, thank you very very much.

For the technical inspection all you will need is the car papers – the little green paper (or something similar) you get when you register the car that has the technical information on it. Nothing else is needed. They do a general inspection (Hauptuntersuchung) just to see if everything is doing OK. And they also do check something else, because the car is not from Germany (they just said an inspection under the Art. 21). This inspection will set you back for about 150 EUR and you can do it at any TÜV garage in you vicinity.

Then comes the tricky part – insurance. Because we are not residents of Slovenia any more, we have to insure the car in Germany. They have lots of insurance, even online insurances. But if you come from abroad and you have a car that hasn’t been registered and insured in Germany, you will have to go to the insurance in person. Before that be sure to get a paper for the transmission of bonuses from your old insurance company to the new. This transmission is possible if you are an EU citizen (the freedom of movement assures that a German is not treated preferably than other EU citizens) and I do not know if it is possible if you come from a third country that has no special agreement with Germany (maybe it is possible if you are insured with a filial of a German insurance company). These benefits can mean up to 500 EUR difference in the amount of insurance you have to pay – especially if you have had years without an accident. The insurance company will issue insurance papers that have an insurance number on it.

The last part is the official registration. These are the document you require:

– ID papers of the car owner – Personalausweis

– car papers in original – slowenische Fahrzeugdokumente im Original

– registration plates – ausländische Kennzeichen

– insurance number – Versicherungsbestätigung (eVB-Nummer)

– information of your bank account – Bankverbindung

– papers of the inspection of the car – Hauptuntersuchung beim TÜV bzw. DEKRA und eventuell § 21 Gutachten.

After you get the papers, you go to a person that will make the registration plates right in front of you. 🙂 The official procedure will cost you about 50 EUR (it also depends on the amount of the car tax you have to pay and if you want special plates made).


Residency – May 1st 2014

One of the things that kind of bothered me in Germany was the official procedure of becoming a resident – with that I mean only the declaration of permanent residence. No documents were issued. So this post is a little longer and without pictures, that is why it belongs under the Whats, Whys and Whos of Bayreuth.

Every immigrant has an obligation to declare the address of his permanent abode – simply put, you have to register your address at the local office (Die Rathaus). It should be easy peasy. If you do not do it in 8 days of your arrival, you would have to pay a fee. Citizens of EU Countries do not need a residence permit (except I think Croatian residents who just joined – the restrictions for Slovenian residents elapsed in May 2011), they just have to register their habitat. A friend told us that this takes about 5 minutes and all you need is a rent agreement. For us it took more like one hour and half in the two visits to the Rathaus that we had to take. And it was when Ambrož had chicken pox – they should consider themselves lucky he didn`t put out his willy and start scratching like crazy. We almost had to tie his hands because he was so itchy. Well this is not what actually bothered me. What bothered me was the attitude of the officials when dealing with immigrants. You have to take into account that I have also worked in the Tax Administration of Slovenia where I had to work with different people also from other Countries and I always did whatever I could to make their experience with the Tax Office as easy as possible. One of the major obstacles is of course the language. For instance Tax Administration of Slovenia issues some of the most common forms used by immigrants or foreign tax payer is different languages, most commonly in English.

Therefore in my naivety I also expected the same approach from other public employees that deal with foreign people every day. Paula and I speak English very well and we (together combined) get by with our German. But official language is something quite different. So we were hoping the officials would be prepared to speak to us in English or at least make an effort to make the process easier. Boy, were we wrong. The first time we came to the Rathaus and asked if they speak English the answer was »nein!«. Ok, I could understand that, no official is obliged to speak any other language than the official language of the procedure (this is German). But the officer should take into account that the participants of the procedure clearly didn`t speak German sufficiently to understand their rights and obligation. Not once did the officer explain us our procedural rights (which they should have – e.g. that we have the right to demand an interpreter – on our costs of course) and not once did they try to speak slower or clearer to help us understand (this is the least they could do). Can you imagine the reaction of hundreds of tax payers I spoke during the years in person or on the telephone if I would tell them that they can only speak in Slovenian language. My phone calls with tax payer that did not talk Slovene (some of them were also from people representing famous people or people who are placed high up in the business latter) would go like this: Tax payer: “Hi, I am calling about the tax return I have to submit, but I have some questions!” and I would go like: “Se opravičujem, uradni jezik slovenskega davčnega postopka je slovenščina!” and the Tax payer would go: “What, I am sorry I can`t understand you!” and I would go like: “Če želite uradnega prevajalca za potrebe upravnega postopka, ga lahko imenujemo na vaše stroške!” and the tax payer: “Tuutuu tuutuu…”. You get the picture of how intolerable this kind of attitude would be. We wouldn´t get anywhere like that. And even when I spoke English with the tax payers who contacted me, I tried to be as comprehensive as I could, speaking slowly and repeating the important parts. And I know most of my (former) colleagues do the same.

Here in Bayreuth we got nothing of that and we weren`t trying to ask for any benefits, but just executing our obligation to register. Do not get me wrong, none of the officials was mean or disrespecting, they did everything by the book (well except to inform us of our procedural rights, which they should have), there was no (and I mean absolutely any) effort to make thing easier. I cannot imagine how some of the people register here that don´t speak even as much German as we do and have no legal knowledge like I do.

So, if you ever come to Bayreuth, be ready to speak German when you register or have someone with you to translate. Otherwise you would not even understand what was happening, because all you get is a bunch of papers with hardly any explanation. If I wouldn´t ask about it, we wouldn´t even know if we were registered or not.

But I do not want to be too one-sided in my opinion. Here is a blog entry: – that tells a different story of English in Germany. Kind of funny too…

Slovenec v nemškem upravnem postopku:

Ena stvar, ki me je zmotila v Nemčiji je bila naša izkušnja z nemškim upravnim postopkom prijave stalnega prebivališča – torej postopek prijave rezidentstva v Nemčiji. Nisva zaprosila za kakšne dokumente ali ugodnosti, le prijavila sva bivališče. To je prispevek brez slik in izpostavlja neznanke Bayreutha, zato gre pod stran Kaj, Zakaj in Kdo v Bayreuthu.

Vsak emigrant, ki pride v Nemčijo, mora prijaviti svoje stalno prebivališče – torej sporočiti moraš mestnim oblastem kje živiš. Predpostavljala sva, da bo to popolnoma preprosto opravilo. Če tega ne narediš v 8 dneh od prihoda, si v prekršku. Državljani EU ne potrebujejo dovoljenja za bivanje v drugih državah EU (razen, če se ne motim, državljani Hrvaške, ki so praktično pravkar vstopili – omejitve za slovenske državljane so prenehale maja 2011), temveč morajo le izpolniti enake administrativne zahteve, kot državljani vsakokratne države EU. Prijateljica nama je povedala, da postopek prijave prebivališča traja približno 5 minut in, da vse kar rabiš je najemna pogodba. Mi smo rabili priblližno uro in tričetrt in dva obiska na upravni enoti Bayreutha. In vse skupaj je bilo takrat, ko je imel Ambrož norice. Uradnice so lahko srečne, da ni potegnil ven lulčka in se začel kar tam praskati, ker ga je tako srbelo, da sva mu morala skoraj privezati roke. Sicer pa trajanje postopka ni tista stvar, ki me je motila. Motilo me je odnos uradnikov, ko izvajajo postopke z imigranti. Pri moji kritiki pa morate upoštevati, da sem tudi sam delal s tujimi davčnimi zavezanci, ki ne govorijo besedice slovensko. Vsem tem davčnim zavezancem sem poskusil olajšati izpolnjevanje njihovih obveznosti. In ena največjih ovir pri tem je seveda jezik. Na primer DURS določene obrazce, ki jih množično uporabljajo tuji davčni zavezanci, izdaja v različnih jezikih, najmanj še v angleščini in dveh jezikih manjšin.

Tako sem v svoji naivnosti pričakoval podoben pristop tujih uradnikov, ki se dnevno srečujejo z migranti, torej ljudmi, ki jim nemščina ni prvi ali drugi ali tretji jezik. Paula in jaz govoriva nemško dovolj dobro, da se sporazumevava v vsakodnevnih stvareh. Ampak uradni jezik v uradnih pravnih zadevah je nekaj povsem drugega. Razumljivo sva upala, da bodo uradniki na upravni enoti to upoštevali in bodo z nama govorili angleško, ali pa nama kako poskušali olajšati zadeve (npr. počasneje govorili nemško). Kako sva se zmotila. Prvič, ko sva prišla na upravno enoto, je bil odgovor na najino vprašanje, če uradnica govori nemško, zelo surovi: »nein«. Kot pravnik razumem, da je uradni jezik upravnega postopka nemščina. Ampak uradnik bi moral upoštevati, da stranke pred njim očitno ne zna uradnega jezika, zato bi naju morali poučiti o pravicah v upravnem postopku, kar pomeni, da bi nama morala na neki način povedati, da imava pravico zahtevati tolmača (seveda na najine stroške). Tega uradnica ni naredila, niti se ni potrudila, da bi z nama govorila počasneje in bolj razločno (npr. tako je z nama govoril prodajalec kart na Deutsche Bahn, ki sva ga tekom 15 minutne procedure razumela popolnoma vse. Na koncu se nama je on zahvalil, da smo lahko govorilo po nemško, ker po slovensko ne bi šlo. Pa smo se vsi malo zasmejali, on se je smejal po nemško, midva po slovensko – J smeh je, ugotavljam univerzalni jezik). Ali si lahko zamislite moje telefonske pogovore s tujimi davčnimi zavezanci, če bi se do njih obnašal na tak način? Moji telefonski pogovori bi izgledali nekako takole: davčni zavezanec: »Hi, I am calling about the tax return I have to submit, but I have some questions!” in jaz bi odgovoril v stilu uradnice v Rathausu: “Se opravičujem, uradni jezik slovenskega davčnega postopka je slovenščina!” in davčni zavezanec bi rekel: “What, I am sorry I can`t understand you!” jaz pa na tole: “Če želite uradnega prevajalca za potrebe upravnega postopka, ga lahko imenujemo na vaše stroške!” telefon davčnega zavezanca pa: “Tuutuu tuutuu…”. Upam, a sem ustrezno orisal nesmiselnost takšnega odnosa in postopanja. Pa še takrat, ko sem govoril angleško s tujimi davčnimi zavezanci, sem se trudil govoriti jasno in počasi ter sem večkrat ponovil bistvene zadeve. Vem, da tudi moji bivši kolegi postopajo enako.

Tukaj v Bayreuthu nisva bila deležna takega odnosa in pristopa in sploh nisva prosila za kakšne ugodnosti ali socialno pomoč, temveč sva izpolnjevala zakonsko obveznost registracije. Ne moje kritike razumeti na način, da bi bil kdo na upravni enoti do naju nesramen ali kaj takega. Sploh ne, vsi (taki so na sploh Nemci, vsaj po dosedanjih izkušnjah) so bili zelo prijazni in so delali po pravilih (no razen dejstva, da naju ni poučila o najinih pravicah). Niso pa storili ničesar, da bi nama olajšali prijave in izpeljave upravnega postopka. Sploh si ne znam predstavljati, kako se prijavijo ljudje, ki ne znajo niti toliko uradnega jezika, kot midva.

Torej, če se boste v bodočnosti kdaj preselili v Bayreuth, s sabo pripeljite prijatelja, ki zna nemško, če že sami ne razpolagate z zadostnim znanjem. V nasprotnem primeru vam ne bo jasno kaj se dogaja okoli vas, saj boste dobili samo polno papirjev, brez kakršnekoli razlage. Če ne bi posebej vprašal, sploh ne bi vedel, da je bila najina vloga odobrena oziroma, da sva se uspešno prijavila.

Nočem pa biti enostranski v svojem pogledu o uporabi jezikov v Nemčiji. Zato vas usmerjam na en blog , ki predstavi malce drugačen pogled na uporabo nemščine in tujih jezikov v Nemčiji, pa še smešen je.