Contents and Functions of the Portal
- Responsibility and Control
- Search for Information and Authorities
- Online Administrative Channels
- Rating Boxes and Comments
- Login Area
- HELP.gv.at for Foreign Citizens
HELP.gv.at is an Internet platform on an inter-administrative level which provides information on all interactions with Austrian authorities and permits the electronic processing of some of these procedures. It is based on concrete life situationsGerman text such as pregnancy, childbirth, marriage or housing.
HELP.gv.at constitutes an interface between authorities and citizens, with special emphasis on such criteria as transparency, readily understandable format, clarity of information and concentration on essential facts.
You can access HELP.gv.at round the clock in order to obtain useful information on dealings with different authorities in more than 200 life situations. You will thus learn what documents will have to be furnished, what fees to be paid, deadlines to be met and what forms or specimen documents can be downloaded at any time.
It is also possible to process a great number of administrative procedures electronically via Online Administrative Channels [Online-Amtswege]. If you wish to obtain more detailed information about this topic, please continue reading under "Online Administrative Channels".
The "Gesetzliche Neuerungen" service area provides information on planned legal changes which are relevant to citizens before they come into force. They are updated from the evaluation procedere [Begutachtungsverfahren] right through to their publication in the Federal Law Gazette [Bundesgesetzblatt].
Before information on the individual life situations is made available to citizens via HELP.gv.at, the competent authorities must approve the technical correctness of its contents.
After the green light has been given by the competent authority/authorities, the pages to be published are "stamped" and the date of the latest version of the document is indicated. From this moment onwards, the authority or institution of the public administration having technical jurisdiction assumes full responsibility for the text.
By entering a search term into the search field you may obtain general information on interactions with authorities or look for specific forms, authorities or official terms.
The HELP.gv.at authority search function helps users to find out their competent public authority. At first, the type of authority (e.g. town hall/magistrate, registry office, administrative district authority etc.) must be chosen. By entering a postal code or choosing a municipality the regionally competent authority of the desired type will be displayed. You can also activate the "Behörden meiner Gemeinde" menu item when choosing the type of authority in order to have all authorities which are related to a certain municipality displayed.
Further informationGerman text on searching for government authorities can be found in the help section.
In March 2001, the first electronic interactions with authorities went online. Since then, administrative procedures (such as having birth or marriage certificates issued, applying for a pension, childcare allowance or a criminal record certificate) can be carried out electronically in certain municipalities/administrative district authorities.
The main criteria for the selection of the administrative procedures that can be handled electronically are their benefits to citizens and administrative authorities as well as a minimum frequency of visits and simplicity of implementation. The number of partner authorities, just five initially, has increased to more than 1,000 in the meantime and is still growing.
With the entry into force of the E-Government Act on 1 March 2004, the Citizen Card [Bürgerkarte] (chip card or mobile phone signature [Handy-Signatur]) may be used for contacts with public authorities. It enables you to sign applications electronically, thus allowing a complete on-line handling of official matters via administrative channels.
With "Online-Amtswege" HELP.gv.at offers citizens an opportunity to handle administrative procedures electronically and thus acts as a mediator between the public authorities and citizens.
For this purpose, HELP.gv.at makes available a web form which has to be filled in on the computer screen. Once the "send" button has been pressed, the entered data are transferred to the electronic terminal of the respective public authority.
Subsequently the user receives a confirmation of the transfer and the competent authority is informed by e-mail that a new application has come in. (Data are retrieved by downloading or via an XML interface.)
There is a rating box below the aforementioned stamp of approval on every theme page. You can rate the page via this box and let us know whether the information provided was useful to you. Furthermore, a comment can be added to your rating.
Further informationGerman text on the rating boxes and comments can be found in the help section.
There is a personalised version of the HELP.gv.at contents in the login area. The information offered on HELP.gv.at can be tailored to citizens' needs by entering the place of residence. Consequently, forms in the region concerned are displayed automatically. Furthermore, all government authorities in the region concerned can be selected per mouse click.
If you wish to be reminded about the date of expiry of your passport, you may use the reminder service. You can also use the e-Tresor (free basic version) in the login area. Moreover, you may directly access your social insurance data sheet.
The range of services offered in the login area is constantly expanded.
As it is not always easy to find one's bearings in a foreign country, HELP.gv.at for Foreign Citizens offers foreign nationals an orientation guide in English.
Structured in accordance with individual life situations (e.g. working, motor vehicles, retirement pension), HELP.gv.at for Foreign Citizens provides information and support concerning administrative procedures and links and addresses to various government authorities.
For example, this service informs foreign citizens about how to register their place of residence in Austria or what documents are required for a marriage with an Austrian citizen.
HELP Editorial Staff