The conversion of an EU or EEA driving license is voluntary, because the driving license is valid for an unlimited period in Germany. There is no exam. That was exactly one of the intentions when the EU community driving license was introduced. You can find a list of EU and EEA countries below.
For many countries in the world there is the possibility of having a driving license acquired there converted into a German one without having to test (e.g. some states of the USA, Canadian provinces).
This is either due to the fact that these states require a training comparable to the German one, or that there are agreements between the FRG and these states for mutual examination-free description. This is of course particularly interesting for exchange pupils or students who stay abroad for more than six months, because the costs for a driver's license are often lower there than in Germany. The extent to which a foreign training enables one to pass the German probationary period is another matter.
A list of these states with a simplified description can be found below. There you can find out which classes will be rewritten and whether a theoretical or practical test is required. If a state is not listed there (eg "New York"), then the German driving test must be taken.
For all other countries not mentioned in the lists, the following applies to the description of the driver's license: theory and driving tests must be passed in Germany. There are neither mutual recognition contracts nor comparable training.
If exams are necessary, they are basically the same as normal driving exams at beginner level, no more - or less - is required. However, experience over the past few years shows that, despite their experience, foreign applicants do not necessarily find the driving test easier than local newcomers. Driving 45 minutes at test level is not comparable to the daily drive from A to B.
Does that mean that you have to go back to driving school like a beginner? Yes and no. In fact, you can only take the driving test if you are accompanied by a driving instructor. For the training (preparation for the exam), however, there are no regulations) the candidate decides for himself how intensively he would like to be trained by the driving instructor. However, you should be prepared to practice the specifics of German road traffic and discard incorrect driving habits in order to pass the test.
After the rewriting, the German probation period applies (see §2a StVG),
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• if less than two years have passed since the foreign driving license was issued;
• possession of the foreign driving license is fully credited to the two-year German probationary period, only the "rest" is still in Germany
• Certain traffic violations within the remaining trial period can lead to an extension of the trial period to four years and to the withdrawal of the driver's license
Holders of a driving license from a member state of the European Union or the European Economic Area do not have to have their driving license rewritten by us, it is fully valid in Germany.
[Umschreibung ausländischer Führerscheine]
EU- und EWR-Führerscheine
Eine Liste dieser Staaten mit vereinfachter Umschreibung findest Du unten. Dort steht, welche Klassen umgeschrieben werden und ob eine theoretische oder praktische Prüfung verlangt wird.
Der Rest der Welt...
Inhaber einer Fahrerlaubnis aus einem Mitgliedsstaat der Europäischen Union oder des Europäischen Wirtschaftsraums müssen ihren Führerschein bei uns nicht umschreiben lassen, er ist in Deutschland voll gültig.
Fahrerlaubnisse der US-Bundesstaaten
Pkw-Fahrerlaubnisse der Kanadischen Provinzen
5)In den Fällen, in denen die Klasse M mit Code 6 versehen ist, ist eine prüfungsfreie Erteilung einer deutschen Fahrerlaubnis nicht möglich (nur Motorradführerschein)
6)In den Fällen, in denen eine Klasse L oder Stage A vorliegt, ist eine prüfungsfreie Erteilung einer deutschen Fahrerlaubnis nicht möglich (Lernführerschein)
7)Der Nachweis des Sehvermögens gemäß §12 ist weiterhin erforderlich.
8)Sofern "Driver License" keinen Hinweis auf spezielle Fahrzeuge enthält, handelt es sich um eine Pkw-Fahrerlaubnis.
9)Nur für Inhaber, die das 18. Lebensjahr vollendet haben. Kein Umtausch einer "Instruction Permit".