The German newspaper Bild, from yesterday, ran a short piece on unregistered asylum seekers/refugees in Germany.
By the Interior Ministry's own estimate, there might be half-a-million people in Germany with no papers (unregistered). On the positive side, they aren't consuming space in the refugee camps....nor are they getting financial support for housing, language classes, etc.
Why skip registering? When you get down to it.....after having walked for weeks to reach Germany....you probably don't have any desire to be told about paperwork and the possibility of being rejected by a bunch of bureaucrats.
How would one survive without work papers or visas in Germany? In some minor way, the German authorities do mount a minor effort....mostly on brothels and construction sites....to demonstrate that they are pursuing those in the country without visas. If you asked most Germans....they will cite the larger construction projects as the chief target for these reviews.
My humble view is that you've got a couple hundred thousand folks who skipped registration....found some relative or friend....who hooked them up with work on the side and an apartment. The work is the type where you pay the guy in cash (minimum wage work), with no taxes paid out and no social pension deal involved.
If you look around, from restaurants and cafes.....to garages and butcher shops.....there's lots of opportunities for 'in-the-black' type work to be done in Germany. Politicians don't really want to get into details over this or make it a hour-long public forum because you'd have to pump up the resources (probably another couple thousand employees nation-wide) to go and inspect business operations.
Will this continue on forever? My guess is that the undocumented workers in Germany will do this for some period of time, and one day bump against reality that they need a drivers license, need to marry, or worry about a lack of a pension....so they come up and announce they are in Germany and want the visa. The Germans will ask questions and maybe figure out that the guy has been here for five years and just sign off on his situation. I doubt if anyone gets hustled out of the country if they've stayed hidden for a couple of years in plain sight.