Germany to scrap academic titles from IDs and passports

Germany to scrap academic titles from IDs and passports

The German government has announced that it will withdraw the possibility for citizens to add their doctoral title to their passport or ID. The new rules will apply from May 1, 2024.

Germany will scrap Dr. title from passports

A spokesperson for the German government has announced that the Ampel coalition will remove the possibility of adding a Dr. title before a name on a passport or ID.

According to the spokesperson, the change should make international travel easier, since authorities and police in other countries are often confused by the custom of a title being included on an ID. “The two letters are often understood as the first two letters of a surname,” the spokesperson explained, which in turn leads to delays in immigration queues. 

New title rules will apply from May 2024

From May 1, 2024, anyone who has a title in Germany will still be able to add their title to their passport, but only on a separate page from the main identification information. Anyone who already has a passport or ID card that has their title on it will still be able to use the same document until it is no longer valid.

The decision marks a tentative step away from the German preoccupation with academic titles, which can result in some going by Frau. Prof. Dr. Dr. Dr. Musterfrau or the like. This preoccupation has also given rise to a parallel economy of research, such as done by the website VroniPlag, which examines doctoral theses - particularly those of politicians - to find evidence of plagiarism.

Thumb image credit: ID1974 /

Olivia Logan


Olivia Logan

Editor for Germany at IamExpat Media. Olivia first came to Germany in 2013 to work as an Au Pair. Since studying English Literature and German in Scotland, Freiburg and Berlin...

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