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Old 25.09.2015, 08:43
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Looks like I'm heading to Zurich! A few clarifications...

Hello all,

I have done quite a bit of research on Switzerland and the logistics living and working in the county. So I suppose my queries are more ‘for validation’ than questions so to speak. I think I have most things covered, but want to double check a few things in case I have missed anything fundamental!

A little about my situation; I am an EU17 citizen with an EU17 partner, currently unmarried though together 10+ years. We are getting in summer 2016. I have tentatively accepted a suitable position with a large corporation, and will be based in Zurich. The package is 125,000CHF with the initial four months accommodation provided, alongside some other perks. The package also includes assistance with house hunting and general set-up.

As I forsee it, my partner and I will obtain residence permits upon arrival. I will commence work immediately and she will start to look for work. I understand that her working rights are unrestricted and upon signing an employment contract she will be issued with a work permit. We are hopeful that she will find a suitable position (though she is relatively flexible on this). This would hopefully see our joint income being at least 175,000CHF which would be excellent for the lifestyle we hope to obtain (I think). Alternatively, I see no major issue in us getting by on 125,000CHF for a while, based on our requirements. With that said, if she is unable to find work after six months, would this affect her residence in Switzerland?

We will look to commence medical insurance as soon as possible after arriving (i.e. immediately). Between us we have some pre-existing medical conditions (non-life threatening, though a bit of a nuisance). As I understand it, we will not struggle to obtain suitable coverage as a medical insurer cannot reject an applicant based on medical history. I believe that premiums are based on ‘age, sex and location’ rather than pre-existing history? As such, premiums shouldn’t change despite our histories. I take medication long-term and require a couple of tests per year so naturally this is a big consideration for me.

And of course, the age old question of ‘is it enough money?’. We would be looking for a one or two bedroom apartment in a secure area, we don’t need ultra-modern or city centre location. I will be based near Zurich Hardbrücke, but am willing to commute thirty minutes or so if required. We may eat out a couple of times a week and enjoy a couple of drinks on occasion, but we generally lead a frugal life. We prefer to save than spend, so that remains a goal for us. Any general feedback?

Many thanks, and I look forward to starting a new life in Zurich and Switzerlnad! Please feel free to add any advice or guidance to a soon-to-be Zurich-er!
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Old 25.09.2015, 08:59
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Re: Looks like I'm heading to Zurich! A few clarifications...

"Getting by on 125 000"

Don't worry, you'll be fine.
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Old 25.09.2015, 08:59
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Re: Looks like I'm heading to Zurich! A few clarifications...

Hello. Welcome.

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A little about my situation; I am an EU17 citizen with an EU17 partner, currently unmarried though together 10+ years.
Be prepared, that this means nothing in Switzerland. Officially they only recognise marriage for permit purposes. There are cases of partners being given "concubine" permits, but there is no guarantee. She can of course obtain her own 3 month job seekers permit while she looks for work. If she has a permit through you, there is no problem if she doesn't find work. If she has a 3-month job seeker permit, she needs to find work.

No, no-one can be refused Basic medical insurance. But it's unlikely that you'll get supplementary insurance, which covers things such as private wards, complementary therapies etc.
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Old 25.09.2015, 09:16
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Re: Looks like I'm heading to Zurich! A few clarifications...

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Hello. Welcome.



Be prepared, that this means nothing in Switzerland. Officially they only recognise marriage for permit purposes. There are cases of partners being given "concubine" permits, but there is no guarantee. She can of course obtain her own 3 month job seekers permit while she looks for work. If she has a permit through you, there is no problem if she doesn't find work. If she has a 3-month job seeker permit, she needs to find work.

No, no-one can be refused Basic medical insurance. But it's unlikely that you'll get supplementary insurance, which covers things such as private wards, complementary therapies etc.
Thanks for the information, much appreciated. Going from the information on expatica.com regarding EU citizens:

If you come to Switzerland to look for work but haven’t found a job by the end of the three months, the local cantonal authority can grant you a short-term residence permit valid for a further three months. This can be extended for up to one year.

Based on this, the situation should be OK. We have planned our wedding towards the end of 2016, so absolute worst case scenario, we will be married in the not too distant future and our relationship would then be recognised.

As for the medical insurance, I think that basic medical insurance should suffice for our needs.

Many thanks.
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Old 25.09.2015, 11:54
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Re: Looks like I'm heading to Zurich! A few clarifications...

It sounds like you got everything pretty much covered. The rest of the things you would probably figure out as you go along.

But some comments for you:

- Permit situation for your partner, she should hopefully get a permit as your partner, so should have no further problems and she doesn't have to find a job to be issued with a permit. (Think of it as a resident permit rather than a work permit)

- Health insurance, you can already start comparing prices, www.comparis.ch is a good starting point. If your German is any good you can also look at http://www.priminfo.ch.

- Accomodation, based on the rule of thumb of 1/4 Gross Salary you should be able to afford an apartment in the region of CHF2600. per month. Which means you should be ok to find something but it won't be easy depending on how picky you are and how desirable the place you looking to take. You need to bear in mind the income tax situation because with over CHF120K annual salary you are expected to file taxes annually even though you will be subject to Quellensteuer (tax at source) with any difference refunded to you / having to be paid by you. Zurich inner city have higher tax rates so you will generally have to pay more at the end of every year if you live within the city (zone 10).

If your work place is around Hardbruecke then you should be able to commute to quite a few places as it's very well connected with lots of trains stopping there. Your options are really quite open. For public transport connections you can check out www.sbb.ch.


I hope this helps.

Last edited by The_Love_Doctor; 25.09.2015 at 12:12.
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