End of Residence by Extradition

This article discusses the verdict of BVerwG (re 1 C 1.11 of January 17, 2012) in Leipzig relating to a case in which a person was extradited and upon return had to fight to keep his residence permit.


This judgment concerns a 44-year-old Kosovar man who is married to a German woman and has three children with her. He legally resided in Germany for over ten years. Due to a European warrant for murder, the man was taken into detention to await trial in the Netherlands. After he was found not guilty, he was released from prison. After being detained for three years outside of Germany, he returned, only to receive a “punishment” from the immigration office when they withdrew his residence permit. The office argued that his permit had ex officio expired because he was out of the country for more than six months. He filed suit, maintaining that his settlement permit had not expired.

The lower courts decided in favor of the plaintiff. And again at the Federal Administrative Court, the City of Mannheim lost the case. All courts held that grounds for expiration of §51 I no. 6, 7 AufenthG had not been fulfilled because there was no voluntary departure. Such is not the case when governmental authorities use their legal powers to take a person into custody. The goal of the statute is to cancel a residence permit when a person shows the authorities that he is no longer interested in residing in Germany. For effective control of migration, a reentry is to be prevented. However, when a person leaves the country because of legal force, it cannot be concluded that the person no longer wants German residency.

Additional information