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Take a Translator
I can’t wait for an appointment time because my issue is urgent.
That’s fine. Just keep in mind that there is no guarantee on how long it will take waiting in line. Here’s some good news: Red Tape Translation is currently capping costs after the fifth hour for walk-ins at the Ausländerbehörde.
How long is it likely to take on the day?
It’s hard to say… if you have an appointment, it takes somewhere between 50-90 minutes on average for most public office appointments. Without an appointment, it’s anyone’s guess. But I do cap Ausländerbehörde appointments at five hours – if it takes longer than five hours in one day, you stop paying.
Can I walk in without an appointment and text you once I know exactly when I need an interpreter?
You will have no way of knowing when your waiting number will flash up. Plus, you’ll need to speak to someone in German and show your documents just to get a waiting number in the first place. Finally, we need to plan our day out in advance so we can help other people, too. So we can’t wait on stand-by and guarantee someone will be free.
My boyfriend/girlfriend and I both need work permits. Can we be seen together? Can we share an interpreter?
Different types of permits are handled in different parts of the building, and there are two locations in Berlin. Are you and your partner the same nationality? Are you going for the same type of permit? If the stars align and you and your partner’s cases will both be handed by the same team, a friendly case worker might not mind seeing you both at the same time with one interpreter.
Sometimes your permits are handled in different teams in different parts of the building. You’ll find that information on the appointment confirmation that the foreigner’s office sent you when you booked online. If the appointments are taking place in two separate locations within an hour or two of each other, I’ll probably have line up two interpreters for you.
If you’re not sure, get Red Tape Translation to help you figure out where to go. Book a coaching and I’ll also tell you exactly what to bring with you and what to expect.
Can you make sure my work permit is granted?
No. I am a translator and an interpreter, not a lawyer. I will help you communicate with your case worker, but I don’t influence the flow of information. I can’t beg, plead, coerce, threaten, or convince. I might throw in a joke or a pleasantry here and there though. I can also make helpful suggestions with your permission. And charm is not to be underestimated.
Will I have to come back to the office a second time?
Maybe. Sometimes the case workers want to see additional documents, even if they are not on the official list. This is out of your and my control.
I now can’t make it on the agreed date and time. What do I do?
If you let me know you won’t make it in advance (at least 1 business day before your appointment), you can use your pre-booked, non-refundable Red Tape Translation payment another time. If you need help rescheduling, please let me know. If you forget to let me know or don’t give me enough notice, you’ll lose your prepaid fee.
What happens if I get turned away or it’s all over in 5 minutes? Do I get a refund?
No. I’ve travelled to your appointment with you and conveyed the information you received accordingly. I’ll probably offer you a discount if you need me again, though.
How do I pay you for any extra time on the day of my appointment?
I will let you know if there’s any more money owing and I’ll send you payment instructions. You can pay by Paypal, TransferWise or bank transfer.