Protection of cultural property; application for an export license

If you want to export cultural property from Germany, you need an export license under certain conditions.

Description

You need a license to export cultural property from Germany if the cultural property exceeds certain age or value limits. Cultural assets are, for example, works of art, archaeological objects, archival materials, manuscripts or antiques such as furniture, musical instruments or jewelry. You can find out about the age and value limits, for example, on the internet portal of the Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and the Media on the protection of cultural property.

If the permit requirement is dependent on a financial value of the cultural asset, this value is

  • the price paid within the last 3 years for a purchase or sale, or
  • in other cases, a justified domestic appraised value at the time of application.

You can apply for the permit at the competent authority. A distinction is made between permanent and temporary export. The export is temporary if it is for a period limited from the beginning to a maximum of 5 years.

You apply for a permit to export cultural property in writing to the competent authority of the federal state in which the cultural property is located at the time of application. If you are a legal entity, your head office in the federal territory is decisive for the local jurisdiction.

Note: You can also use a new online procedure in pilot operation to apply for export licenses for cultural property. The online procedure includes an optional pre-check to determine, based on a few questions, whether an export license is needed in a specific case. In general, you no longer have to select the correct application yourself; it is determined automatically on the basis of the information provided. The pilot operation serves to further test and optimize the procedure. At the same time, the procedure is to be expanded by the end of 2022 so that digital issuing of the license is also possible.

Prerequisites

A permit pursuant to Regulation (EC) No. 116/2009 or pursuant to Section 24 (1) No. 2 of the Cultural Property Protection Act will be issued to you if

  • You are entitled to apply,
    • as the owner or an authorized third party
  • you have submitted the required documents and
  • at the time of the decision, there is no export ban in accordance with Section 21 (1), (2), (4) and (5) of the Cultural Property Protection Act.

You may be granted a license under Section 26 of the Cultural Property Protection Act if

  • you are entitled to apply,
    • you are the owner or the rightful direct owner of the cultural object
  • you have submitted the required documents
  • at the time of the decision, there is no export ban in accordance with Section 21 (1), (2), (4) and (5) of the Cultural Property Protection Act, and
  • you, as the applicant, can guarantee that the cultural object intended for export will be re-imported into Germany in an undamaged condition and in due time.

You may be granted a permit under Section 25 of the Cultural Property Protection Act if

  • you are entitled to apply,
    • you are entitled to apply for a permit if you are a cultural property preservation institution that regularly exports parts of its holdings on a temporary basis for public exhibition, restoration or research purposes
  • you have submitted the required documentation
  • at the time of the decision there is no export ban according to § 21 number 1, 2, 4 and 5 Cultural Property Protection Act and
  • you, as the person submitting the application, can guarantee that the cultural property intended for export will be reintroduced into the Federal Republic of Germany in an undamaged condition and in due time.

Procedure

To apply online for a license to export registered cultural property, you can use an online process that is currently being piloted. The online procedure includes an optional pre-check to determine whether an export license is needed based on a few questions. In general, you no longer need to select the correct application - it is determined automatically based on the information you provide. The pilot operation serves to further test and optimize the procedure. At the same time, the procedure is to be expanded by the end of 2022 so that it will also be possible to issue the license digitally.

To apply for a license for the export of registered cultural property in writing, the following steps are necessary:

  • Use the Authority Finder to find the competent authority and the PDF form for your federal state: http://www.kulturgutschutz-deutschland.de/DE/Service/Formulare/Behoerdenfinder/behoerdenfinder_node.html
  • Download the correct PDF form.
    • Export license according to Regulation (EC) No. 116/2009, § 25 or § 26 Cultural Property Protection Act for export to third countries and
    • according to § 24 paragraph 1 number 2, § 25 or § 26 of the Cultural Property Protection Act for export to member states of the European Union.
  • Fill out the PDF form on your PC.
  • Print the documents.
    • Export license according to Regulation (EC) No. 116/2009 for export to third countries in 3 copies (the form already contains all copies),
    • Export license according to § 24 paragraph 1 number 2 Cultural Property Protection Act for export to member states of the European Union in 2 copies,
    • Export licenses according to § 25 and § 26 of the Cultural Property Protection Act, each in duplicate (note: the forms for export to third countries already contain all copies).
  • Sign in the spaces provided, stamp the documents if necessary, and attach the necessary supporting documents to each copy.
  • Send the documents to the competent authority.
  • The authority will review your application and send you
    • 2 copies (export under Regulation Number 116/2009 to a third country) or
    • one copy (export according to § 24 paragraph 1 number 2, § 25 or § 26 Cultural Property Protection Act to a third country or export to member states of the European Union),
    • return the completed, signed and sealed documents, together with a fee notice, if applicable.
    • Copy 1 is the application and remains with the authority. All other copies will be returned to you. In the case of export to a third country in accordance with Regulation (EC) No. 116/2009, you must submit copies 2 and 3 to the competent German customs office of export together with the export declaration. The customs office of export fills in box 26 and hands you copy 2. After the actual exit, the German customs office of export confirms it in box 27 and sends copy 3 back to the authority that issued the license.

If your export license application is rejected, you will receive a written decision with reasons and the appeal instructions.

Special notes

A permit under Section 22(1) of the Cultural Property Protection Act obtained by threat, bribery or collusion, or obtained by false or incomplete information, shall be null and void under Section 22(5) of the Cultural Property Protection Act. This applies mutatis mutandis to licenses (Section 24(1)(1) and (2) of the Cultural Property Protection Act under Section 24(9) of the Cultural Property Protection Act).

Deadlines

For licenses under Regulation (EC) No. 116/2009 and Section 24(1)(1) of the Cultural Property Protection Act and Section 24(1)(2) of the Cultural Property Protection Act, the period of validity is 12 months. Export (temporary or permanent) is possible until the last day of the validity period. The re-importation period (up to 5 years) for one-time temporary export of cultural property (Regulation (EC) No. 116/2009 and Section 24(1)(1) of the Cultural Property Protection Act) is determined by the authority according to the purpose of the export.

For licenses under § 25 and § 26 Cultural Property Protection Act, the period of validity is up to 5 years. The (temporary) export is possible until the last day of the validity period, the re-importation must take place within 5 years.

Processing time

For an application under Regulation (EC) No. 116/2009 or under Section 24(1)(2) of the Cultural Property Protection Act, the processing time is up to 10 working days after submission of the complete application documents. Apart from the above-mentioned decision period for certain licenses, the processing time depends on the completeness of the submitted application documents and the complexity of the application. The permit must be applied for in good time before the planned export of the cultural property.

Required documents

  • documents containing all relevant information on the cultural object and its whereabouts at the time the application was submitted
  • Photography of the cultural heritage

    (in the case of several cultural objects, if necessary, only a detailed list; in this case, please contact the Bayerische Staatsgemäldesammlungen beforehand)

Forms

Online procedures

  • Kulturgutschutz Deutschland - Ausfuhrgenehmigung

    You can apply for an export license for cultural goods online. After authentication with the federal user account (NKB) or the company account (ELSTER), you can submit your application completely online. Without such authentication you can create the application online, but at the end you have to print it out, sign it and send it by mail to the competent authority.

Status: 08.03.2022

Responsible for editing: Bundesministerium der Finanzen

Contains machine translated content. Show the original content

  • Online transactions, Bavaria-wide
  • Online transactions, locally limited
  • Prefillable Form, Bavaria-wide
  • Legal bases, Bavaria-wide
  • Legal bases, locally limited
  • Fees, Bavaria-wide
  • Fees, locally limited
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