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The United States have different rules about exactly how one obtains an engineering license, but the general process is the FE exam, a few years of work, and the PE exam. Suppose one then wishes to practice engineering in Germany. What are the legal requirements for doing so?

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  • $\begingroup$ I'm not sure if the site is more about the actual practice of engineering, or all things including governance of engineering standards... Personally I would think this more of a legal question, or what they used to term "too localized." But I may be mistaken in this thought. $\endgroup$ – JYelton Jan 20 '15 at 22:55
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    $\begingroup$ @JYelton Absolutely, this site should include the governance of engineering standards. This isn't just an applied site. A big part of this site (if we do it right) will include all the issues of great interest to the professional engineering associations. I'm hoping that these professional organizations will become a big part of this site and they are very involved in the legal and professional-values aspects of engineering disciplines. They should be a most welcomed part of this site. $\endgroup$ – Robert Cartaino Jan 21 '15 at 2:09
  • $\begingroup$ Do you want to practice on your own, or find employment as an engineer? $\endgroup$ – mart Jan 21 '15 at 6:59
  • $\begingroup$ Employment was the main concern. $\endgroup$ – Stephen Collings Feb 3 '15 at 17:10
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Unlike within the United States and the PE license, it doesn't appear that it's possible to receive an EUR ING license by direct comity. EU Engineering licensing is handled by FEANI, and on their EUR ING page they state:

Application is open only to individuals if they are members of an engineering association represented in FEANI through a National Member

But it may be possible to join one of the German FEANI members and see if they can support a reciprocity or comity process.1

1There are other member organization in other countries, but your question specifically mentioned Germany.


Digging a bit deeper, it does appear that there may be limited cases where an EUR ING will be awarded based upon sufficient experience as a professional engineer. Take a look through the FEANI EUR ING guide, in particular Section 5 which details the minimum requirements. Most of the cases cover qualifications based upon an education received within an FEANI member country. Section 5.4b deals with special circumstances and provides the potential pathway that you could receive an EUR ING license.

Nevertheless it is possible to consider such alternative routes. Very strict procedures, however, have then to be followed, (see 7.1), and the applicant must have at least 15 years of Professional Engineering Experience recognized by FEANI.

So it does appear to be possible, but again, it's not as simple as the comity process within the United States.

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Take all this with a grain of salt. I work in Germany as an engineer and don't have any special license sides my degree, but I'm employed and your situation may be different.

Generally, engineer is a free profession in Germany. This means, if you are an engineer (have an engineering degree from a university or a university of applied science), you can freelance as an engineer. Each state has an Ingenieurgesetz that states how to handle foreign degrees. Mostly, if the degree is equivalent (Master/BA of engineering) you can request the right to call yourself an engineer (But I don't know yet where).

Additionally, I think for certain tasks in civil engineering you have to be part of an engineering association.

Lastly, if you work with a company, you generally don't need a special license (for example to sign of plans)

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  • $\begingroup$ Engineering work in North America is similar, and you need to have at least 3 years of work experience before you can apply for a professional engineer license. I believe the OP was looking to see if there was any form of reciprocity regarding professional licensing. $\endgroup$ – user16 Jan 21 '15 at 14:51
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    $\begingroup$ I think we need to know what the OP wants to do $\endgroup$ – mart Jan 21 '15 at 15:22

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