The German Schengen Visa - Tourist Visa

BVerwG: German embassied have a" wide discretion" to issue Schengen visas

The press statement of the federal administrative court has the following content:


The responsible German embassied have a" wide discretion" (German “Beurteilungsspielraum”) in checking the Schengen visa applications, which relates to the interpretation of the grounds for refusal and the relevant facts. This was decided by ECJ in the judgment of December, 19, 2013 (C-84/12, Koushkaki). The consequence is that the administrative courts can only check the negative decision in a restricted way. Though according to the EU principle of member states' procedural autonomy, the development of the legal proceedings and the determination of judicial control density has to be defined by the legal system of every member state of the EU. But ECJ has, however justified the "wide discretion" of the embassies to the complexity of the review, the prognostic factors of the decision and the close contact of the embassy to the country. These requirements have to be observed in the judicial review under national law. The judicial review is directed so by the standards that applies under German law when reviewing cases in an administrative proceeding.


The full reasons of the decision of the German federal administrative court are written at the moment. From my view this decision has to be checked by ECJ. I think the German decision is violating European law under the view of the decision of ECJ judgment of December 19, , C-84/12, Rahmanian Koushkaki ./.Federal Republic of Germany, point 75. As the German discretion (“Beurteilungsspielraum) is not fully controllable by the German administrative courts Germany has a special view which is not compatible with the European Union law, but the ECJ demands the conformity of all the national decisions with the requirements of European Union law.


ECJ Case C 84/12, Rahmanian Koushkaki v Federal Republic of Germany


A German embassy can only reject to issue a „Schengen-Visa“ if this is expressly regulated in the EU Visa Code


The national authorities have a wide discretion to determine if there are rejection reasons for the visa applicant, but it is not an exclusive discretion which cannot be controlled by the adminstrative court


Until the decison of the European Court of Justice  (ECJ) the officers in the German embassies had the practice to decide about the visa applications at their own exclusive discretion. Some  judges of the chambes of the responsible Berlin administrative court had the opinion that  there was nearly never the possibility to control this administrative discretion except if the embassy did not use any administrative discretion or used it in a wrong way. This legal situation has changed now. The judges of the ECJ decided that the law regulations of the EU-Visa Code are indeterminate legal concepts, which can be fully judicial checked by the court.


For Schengen-visa-applications, tourist visas or visit visas the applicant should notice the following. The visa applicant has only a chance to get the visa if he has strong roots in his country. He has to prove that he is willing to return to his country based on his economical and social situation. Therefore an application for a “Schengen-visa” needs a sincere preparation. It is important to submit documents which prove the roots and his will to return to his country. He shall explain and prove his family situation, submit documents about property, income and ground. Unfortunately the German embassies do not give detailed advises, although this is their duty. If you have doubts if you are in a comfortable situation to apply for a visa you should ask a good informed visa lawyer for the details in your case.

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