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Application for entry in the list of architects (specialising in architecture)


The protected professional title "architect" may only be used by those who are entered under the title in the list of architects of the Chamber of Architects of Lower Saxony, the corresponding directory in another federal state or the list of external service providers:

The same applies to word combinations with the professional title or similar designations. The relevant regulations can be found in particular in § 1 NArchtG.

In order to protect consumers, this ensures that only sufficiently qualified persons exercise the profession under the professional title of "architect" and that they comply with certain professional rules. However, such protection of the professional title requires the Chamber of Architects to require the persons to be registered to provide proof of their qualifications, usually by

- the completion of at least 4 years of study,

- the completion of at least 2 years of professional experience

- attendance of certain training courses.

By registering, you become a member of the Chamber. In the case of architects, membership is linked to the right to submit building documents in accordance with § 53 Abs. 3 Nr. 1 Niedersächsische Bauordnung (NBauO).

Type of employment

The entry in the list of architects takes place depending on your activity in one of the following four types of employment:

  • self-employed
  • active in the construction industry
  • employed
  • civil servant

Process flow

An application for registration must be submitted in writing or online using the form provided. The supporting documents referred to under "Required documents" must be attached to the application. The procedure is essentially regulated in §12 of the Lower Saxony Architects Act.

Who should I contact?

The responsibility lies with the Chamber of Architects of Lower Saxony.

Chamber of Architects of Lower Saxony

Registration Committee

Laves House

Friedrichswall 5

30159 Hanover, Germany

This procedure can also be carried out through a "Point of Single Contact".

The "Point of Single Contact" is a special service offered by municipalities and the state for service providers.

Requirements

Registration requirements

Registration is possible under the following conditions (overview):

- Completion of a course of study corresponding to the field of study with at least 4 years standard duration of study

- Completion of at least 2 years of practical work under the supervision of an architect, including the submission of own work

- Proof of compulsory training

- Residence, professional establishment or place of work in Lower Saxony for registration in the type of employment "freelance":

-Proof of sufficient professional indemnity insurance

Registration requirements in detail according to §§ 5-7 NArchtG:

§ 5
Conditions for registration

( 1) The list of architects shall be entered on application with a professional title pursuant to Paragraph 1(1) and an addition pursuant to Paragraph 10(1) who:

1. has a domicile or a professional establishment in Lower Saxony or pursues his profession wholly or partially, but not only temporarily and occasionally, in Lower Saxony and

2. is qualified to perform the professional tasks associated with the professional title in accordance with Paragraph 2(1) to (6).

(2) Entry in the list of architects shall be refused if there are facts showing that the applicant does not have the good repute required for the profession.

Article 6
Qualification on the basis of a degree
and a professional experience

(1) The qualification pursuant to § 5 Par. 1 No. 2 is possessed by any person who:

1. has successfully completed a course of study at a German university corresponding to the respective field of study in accordance with the requirements of paragraph 2 and the guidelines on the content of the training (see Annex), or

2. has successfully completed a course of study corresponding to the respective field of study at a foreign university or at another foreign educational institution which is equivalent to a course of study according to number 1,

and has subsequently completed practical work in that field in accordance with the requirements of paragraphs 3 and 4.

(2) 1 In the field of architecture, the standard period of study must be at least four academic years. 

(3) 1 The practical professional activity must have been completed full-time for at least two years, or correspondingly longer part-time, have built on the knowledge, skills and competences acquired during the course of study in the respective field of study and have enabled the acquisition of practical professional knowledge, skills and competences in the essential parts of the respective professional tasks in accordance with Section 2 para. 1 to 6.  2 It may also have been completed abroad.  3 Proof of the practical professional activity must be provided by submission of own work and by documents showing the duration of the activity and the practical professional knowledge, skills and competences acquired in the process.

(4) 1 As part of the practical professional activity, at least eight one-day training courses on the following topics must have been attended:

1. public law principles and procedures for planning and construction,

2. civil law foundations of planning and building,

3. planning and construction practice and

4. Cost-effectiveness of planning and construction.

 2 Registration with the professional title "architect" requires attendance of two events per subject area and registration with a different professional title in accordance with § 1 para. 1 requires attendance of one event per subject area and four other events.

(5) In order to be registered with the professional title "architect", the practical professional activity must also have been completed under the supervision of a member of the profession or a chamber of architects who has supervised that the professional activity complies with paragraph 3 sentence 1.  2 For registration with the professional title "architect", up to one year of practical work may have been completed after completion of a three-year course of study.  3 Details of the contents of the practical professional activity, the requirements for supervision and the documents specified in paragraph 3 sentence 3 may be regulated by the Chamber of Architects by statute (see link under forms/applications). 

Article 7
Competence based on the recognition of a European professional qualification

(1) 1 The qualification under Section 5 ( 1 ) no. 2 for registration with the professional title "architect" shall also be possessed by any person who holds evidence of formal qualifications:

1. in accordance with point 5.7.1 of Annex V to Directive 2005/36/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 7 September 2005 on the recognition of professional qualifications (OJ 2005, p. EU No. L 255 p. 22; 2007 No. L 271 p. 18; 2008 No. L 93 p. 28; 2009 No. L 33 p. 49; 2014 L 305 p. 115), as last amended by Commission Delegated Decision (EU) 2016/790 of 7 January 2016 (OJ L 305, p. EU No. L 134 p. 135),

2. in accordance with Annex VI to Directive 2005/36/EC, if the training for the profession of architect began at the latest in the academic reference year referred to therein, or

3. pursuant to Article 49(2) of Directive 2005/36/EC

decreed. 

(2) 1 The qualification specified in section 5 para. 1 no. 2 shall also be possessed by any person who:

1. possesses one or more evidence of formal qualifications required in another Member State of the European Union, another State party to the Agreement on the European Economic Area or a State treated as such by an agreement, in order to obtain authorisation to take up and pursue the profession there, or

2. has pursued the profession full-time for one year, or for an equivalent period of time, in the preceding ten years in a State referred to in paragraph 1 in which that profession is not regulated, and is in possession of one or more evidence of formal qualifications issued and attested by the competent authority in a State referred to in point 1; that the holder has been prepared for the exercise of the profession,

if there are no significant differences in accordance with subsection (4) between the professional qualification resulting from the evidence and the professional qualification referred to in Paragraph 6 or if these

differences referred to in paragraph 6 have been compensated.  2 In the case of registration with the professional title "architect", sentence 1 applies only if the requirement of paragraph 1 is not fulfilled for special and exceptional reasons.

(3) The following shall be treated as evidence of formal qualifications pursuant to subsection (2) sentence 1 no. 1:

1. evidence of formal qualifications issued in third countries under the conditions laid down in Article 3(3) of Directive 2005/36/EC;

2. evidence of formal qualifications or sets of evidence of formal qualifications recognised as equivalent in a country referred to in point 1 of the first sentence of paragraph 2 under the conditions laid down in Article 12(1) of Directive 2005/36/EC, and

3. professional qualifications under the conditions laid down in Article 12(2) of Directive 2005/36/EC.

(4) There are significant differences between the proven professional qualification and the professional qualification required under § 6 if:

1. the evidence relates to skills, knowledge and competences which, in terms of content or scope, differ substantially from the skills and knowledge to which the vocational training regulated in Paragraph 6 relates,

2. the relevant skills, knowledge and competences are an essential prerequisite for the exercise of the profession in question, and

3. the person to be registered has not compensated for these differences by means of knowledge, skills and competences acquired in the course of his professional practice or through lifelong learning and recognised by a competent authority.

(5) 1 If registration cannot take place due to substantial differences in accordance with paragraph 4, the Chamber of Architects shall establish the proven professional qualification and the significant differences to the professional qualification required under Section 6 by written decision.  2 The decision shall state the level within the meaning of Article 11 of Directive 2005/36/EC of the proven professional qualification, the level required under Section 6 and the reasons why the substantial differences cannot be compensated for by the qualifications referred to in paragraph 4 no. 3.  3 The notification shall also specify which compensatory measures in accordance with paragraph 6 can be used to compensate for the substantial differences.

(6) 1 For registration with the professional title "architect", the substantial differences specified in paragraph 4 may be compensated for by passing an aptitude test; if the training corresponds to the level of qualification referred to in Article 11(a) of Directive 2005/36/EC, there is no possibility of compensation...

by completing an adaptation period not exceeding three years or passing an aptitude test of the person to be registered, provided that the training corresponds to the level of qualification referred to in Article 11(c), (d) or (e) of Directive 2005/36/EC.

 3 If an aptitude test has to be taken in accordance with sentences 1 and 2 nos. 1 and 2, the Chamber of Architects must ensure that the aptitude test can be taken within six months of notification of the decision in accordance with paragraph 5. 

Appendix Guidelines on the training content according to § 6 sentence 1 no. 1 NArchtG

A.

General

During the studies, the theoretical and practical aspects of the field of study must be sufficiently emphasized in relation to the respective professional tasks according to § 2 NArchtG as well as the necessary professional skills and possible activities.

B.

Fields

I. Department of Architecture

The studies must focus mainly on architecture with study content in accordance with Article 46(2) of Directive 2005/36/EC. It must have earned at least 240 credit points according to the European Credit Transfer System (Credit Points) in the following subject areas. Credit points must have been earned in the individual subject area groups at least in the specified number.

1. Design and building theory: 48 credit points

The subject area group includes, for example, the subject areas

Design, design methodology, detail design, building theory, land use planning.

2. Presentation and design: 12 credit points

The subject area group includes, for example, the subject areas

Design basics, descriptive geometry, freehand drawing, painting, plastic design, model making, photography, CAD, presentation, visual communication.

3. Urban development, local and regional planning: 6 credit points

The subject area group includes, for example, the subject areas 

Urban planning, settlement, regional planning, landscape planning.

4. General scientific basics of architecture: 6 credit points

The subject area group includes, for example, the subject areas

Architectural history, art history, architectural theory, building culture, monument preservation, political science, sociology.

5. Building construction and structural design: 24 credit points

The subject area group includes, for example, the subject areas

Building construction, structural design, strength theory, execution and detailed planning.

6. Building materials, building physics and building technology: 12 credit points

The subject area group includes, for example, the subject areas

Building materials science, building physics, technical construction, energy-efficient construction, ecology.

7. Construction Economics and Planning Management: 6 credit points

The subject area group includes, for example, the subject areas

Data processing, surveying, construction survey, construction management, cost and schedule planning, project management, facility management.

8. Law and regulations, possibly also as part of subject areas 1, 3, 5, 6 and 7: 6 credit points

The subject area group includes, for example, the subject areas

Planning law, building regulations, private construction and architectural law, procurement law, standards and guidelines.

If a subject area in subject area 8 is part of subject group 1, 3, 5, 6 or 7, the minimum number of credit points in subject area 8 is reduced and the minimum number of credit points in the other subject area group increases accordingly.

Which documents are required?

The application must be accompanied by documents relating to the following areas:

  • Evidence of formal qualifications
  • Foreign applicants: copy of identity card or passport as proof of nationality
  • Practical work
  • Own work and certificates
  • Compulsory training
  • Type of employment
  • For freelance applicants: proof of professional liability insurance

All documents in non-German must be accompanied by a translation, which must be confirmed by a publicly appointed and sworn translator.

Important note on registration:

Registration presupposes that the applicant has a domicile or a professional establishment in Lower Saxony or pursues the profession wholly or partially, but not only temporarily and occasionally, in Lower Saxony (§ 5 para. 1 no. 1 NArchtG).

Please have all the necessary documents ready for the electronic application. Without the complete documentation, you will not be able to complete the electronic application process and submit your application.

Depending on whether you are registering with a Chamber of Architects for the first time or whether you are applying for re-registration or registration in Lower Saxony after an existing registration in another federal state, different proofs are required. Therefore, the two variants are presented separately in the following with regard to the documents to be provided.

Documents required for a first registration:

• Evidence of formal qualifications

Copies of the diploma certificate and diploma certificate, if applicable, copy of the Bachelor's and Master's certificates and a copy of the respective degree certificate and the respective Diploma Supplement as proof of studies in the field of architecture with a standard period of study of at least four years of study. 

Applicants with evidence of formal qualifications from a member state of the EU or another state party to the Agreement on the European Economic Area or a country treated as such by an agreement:

Certificate from the competent authority of the country of origin on the conformity of the training with the European Professional Recognition Directive (BARL - 2005/36/EC), e.g. according to Art. 46 in conjunction with Annex V No. 5.7.1, Art. 49 para.1 in conjunction with Annex VI or Art. 49 para. 2 BARL

In the case of studying abroad outside the EU, the EEA or equivalent countries:

Copies of graduation certificates and certificates. The documents must state the standard duration of study and the training content with the respective temporal scopes.

Note: A list of foreign universities recognised in the Federal Republic of Germany can be found on the Internet (www.anabin.de). If you have any questions about the equivalence of foreign degrees, you can also contact the Central Office for Foreign Education (ZAB: www.kmk.org). It is responsible for the assessment of foreign qualifications in Germany. (Postal address: Secretariat of the Standing Conference of the Ministers of Education and Cultural Affairs of the Länder in the Federal Republic of Germany, Taubenstraße 10, 10117 Berlin).

• Foreign applicants:

Copy of identity card or passport as proof of nationality

• Practical work

Certificates from architects as supervising professional members of at least 2 years of full-time work – correspondingly longer part-time –  in the essential professional tasks pursuant to § 2 para. 1, 5 and 6 NArchtG (cf. § 6 para. 3 and 5 NArchtG as well as the statutes of the Chamber of Architects of Lower Saxony for the field of practical professional activity under supervision of 23.11.2017, cf. also the performance profiles of the Honorarordnung für Architekten und Ingenieure (HOAI). 

If a chamber of architects has supervised the practical professional activity, a certificate from the Chamber of Architects must be submitted. Such a certificate is not required if the Chamber of Architects of Lower Saxony has supervised it. 

Note: If the practical work began before 01.01.2018 and was not completed under the supervision of an architect, the transitional provision of § 43 NArchtG must be observed. Thereafter, the provisions of the NArchtG 2003 continue to apply insofar as they are more favourable to the applicant. Accordingly, a professional activity can also be recognised if it has not been carried out under the supervision of a member of the profession. Anyone wishing to make use of this transitional arrangement must submit certificates from employers, clients or authorities as proof of practical professional activity. In these cases, however, there is a risk that the entry in the list of architects will not be recognised in another EU country in accordance with the BARL. 

• Submission of own work and certificates

As a rule, at least two plans must be submitted for three objects (design plans – e.g. scale 1: 100) and at least one execution plan (scale 1: 50 or 1: 20) and a detailed drawing for one object.

If a professional has supervised the professional activity, it must be accompanied by a certificate from the professional that the own work submitted has been carried out under the supervision of that professional. 

If the Chamber of Architects of Lower Saxony has supervised the practical professional activity, the work to be submitted must be selected from the work submitted to the Chamber of Architects during the practical professional activity. The same applies if the Chamber of Architects of another federal state has exercised supervision.

• Compulsory training

In order to deepen the focus of the practical professional activity, at least eight one-day training events on specific topics (§ 6 para. 4 NArchtG) must have been attended. Two events on the following topics are required:

1. public law principles and procedures for planning and construction,

2. civil law foundations of planning and building,

3. planning and construction practice and

4. Cost-effectiveness of planning and construction.

• Type of employment

The type of freelance employment must be proven by a certificate from the tax consultant, the tax office or the office partner(s).

The type of employment employed is proven by a certificate from the employer. Unemployed applicants submit a certificate from the Employment Agency, a copy of the approval decision if applicable.

Civil servant applicants submit a copy of their certificate of appointment and a current certificate from the employer on the nature of the activity.

Applicants active in the construction industry submit a business registration or an excerpt from the commercial register with a list of shareholders.

• For freelance applicants 

Proof of professional liability insurance (cf. § 11 NArchtG)

Documents required for a change of chamber / re-registration:

• Copy of the diploma or bachelor's and master's certificate and copies of the respective degree certificates

• Proof of previous or current registration – copy of the registration certificate/certificate of the respective Chamber of Architects or proof of the previous or current entry in the list of drafters of the Chamber of Architects of Lower Saxony

• Proof of current type of employment – see variant initial registration

• For freelance applicants:

Proof of professional liability insurance (cf. § 11 NArchtG)

What are the fees?

Registration fee: EUR 285.00

If the Chamber of Architects has supervised the practical professional activity, the fee is: EUR 192.50.

In the case of additional registration in other disciplines, a separate application must be submitted; for this the registration fee is: 250,00 EUR.

Fee for re-registration/change of chamber: EUR 195.00

If you do not use the fully electronic application procedure including the online payment function, please attach a receipt, e.g. printout of the transfer via the payment for online banking, to your registration application. The bank details are:

Nord/LB Hannover: BIC NOLADE2HXXX - IBAN: DE55 2505 0000 0101 4747 81

Commerzbank Hannover: BIC COBADEFFXXX - IBAN: DE97 2504 0066 0338 8345 00

The following payment methods are possible online:

  • Credit card

What deadlines do I have to pay attention to?

There are no deadlines to be observed.

Processing duration

Usually up to 3 months, maximum 4 months (cf. § 12 NArchtG)

Appeal

Possibility of bringing an action before the Administrative Court of Hanover

Technically approved by

Chamber of Architects of Lower Saxony.

Source: Serviceportal Niedersachsen (Portalverbund des Bundes und der Länder)