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  #1  
Old 28.06.2014, 06:53
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non-EU spouse needs D visa?

I am an EU citizen, my spouse is Canadian, we live in Canada, and want to move to Switzerland very soon (for longer than 90 days).

Looking through the threads here, the consensus seems to be that it's no problem for a non-EU spouse to just show up with the EU citizen and request a residence permit. But the consulate told us that the non-EU spouse needs to get a D visa before we go. That seems to contradict what I see here, so who's right? Supposedly it's a Switzerland-only thing, and wouldn't happen according to the FMP rules in any EU country, but the Swiss FMP is different.

The problem is that time is tight, and the visa might not be ready in time. What happens if we show up without it? Can't we stay at least for the first 90 days, then figure something out? A Canadian can stay in Schengen for 90 days, right, so is there any reason we can't do that?

Presumably the visa will be ready within the 90 days. Then what do we do? Do we have to fly all the way back to Canada just to pick up the visa? Can we get the visa in Switzerland? Or a neighbouring country? Or does it have to be picked up where we applied for it (Canada)? Do we have to exit Schengen and return with the visa?
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  #2  
Old 28.06.2014, 08:09
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Re: non-EU spouse needs D visa?

Yes they need a D visa.

They can come as a tourist, but then they would have to return to Canada to pick up the visa. However there have been cases where people have been able to pick them up outside of Switzerland, e.g. French or German embassies.


Or they could just follow on later.
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  #3  
Old 28.06.2014, 10:49
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Re: non-EU spouse needs D visa?

Your husband needs a D visa before you move here. He doesn't need one as a tourist.

Switzerland if not in the EU however they signed no to the FMOP. If you had been living in the EU then he wouldn't have needed a visa.

As I'm sure you have read, the rumor on the street if that some people have just turned up and it was fine. Others were required to go back and apply for the D permit. It depends on the authorities how strict they want to apply the rules. Another rumor is that if you apply for it before you leave and it's not ready yet he could pick it up somewhere in Europe, Stuttgart or Paris.
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Last edited by miniMia; 28.06.2014 at 13:27. Reason: opps.... swiss embassy, not canadian.... silly me.
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Old 28.06.2014, 13:03
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Re: non-EU spouse needs D visa?

Here's info on family reunification:

https://www.ch.ch/en/family-reunification-eu-efta

You're supposed to apply for the visa in your home country and collect it there. So you may need to travel back to Canada to get it. Sometimes it's possible to pick it up at a Swiss embassy in a neighbouring country, but it's not the norm. Some cantons, like Zurich, seem to be much stricter recently on people turning up on a tourist visa and then wanting to become residents so I'd avoid that scenario.

I have to ask why move here though and do you have a job to come to? Because with the recent vote to curb immigration the Swiss authorities are checking into the financial side of things much more than they did before. You may be asked to prove you have sufficient funds to support you both while you job hunt and if they think you don't you won't get your permits.
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Old 28.06.2014, 16:34
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Re: non-EU spouse needs D visa?

I managed to get my permit without picking up a visa (non-EU obviously).In Zurich. BUT i have permanent residency in the EU country, and this is what allowed me to skip the step of picking visa up (and a bit of persuasion).

There was someone here with a bit more similar case to yours. He had to pick up visa in Singapore, while being here on a travel visa. He was told to still go pick up his visa D but in an embassy nearby (Germany or France). So this is possible, however chances are 50/50. There are enough cases when people went all the way back to the US to pick their visas.

All the above are valid for spouses of Swiss citizens. For EU i would ask same question as Medea did: do you have a job here already? Getting your wive's permit is not a sort of an easy stamp in the passport anymore. They indeed ask for more docs to support the case: these are means of financial support.
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Old 29.06.2014, 15:22
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Re: non-EU spouse needs D visa?

Thanks for all the helpful replies.

Yes, I have a job offer, and the job is the reason that we are going.

Cheezecake and miniMia, does residency in an EU country officially remove the need for the visa, or does it just improve the chance of the visa requirement being overlooked? In our past experience, it has been quick and easy for my spouse to get residency in my home (EU) country.
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Old 29.06.2014, 15:26
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Re: non-EU spouse needs D visa?

Getting the d-visa is not difficult for a non-eu spouse of an eu citizen for Switzerland.

Really, you would be best advised to contact the Swiss consulate general of your home country (in Europe), to ask what the correct procedure is, and then sort it out with the Swiss consulate general for canada.

I cannot see how this is worse than stuffing the procedure up and having to stress about it.
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Old 29.06.2014, 15:38
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Re: non-EU spouse needs D visa?

One of you (who ever needs the Visa) might have to stay until it comes then come over later..
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Old 29.06.2014, 17:13
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Re: non-EU spouse needs D visa?

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Thanks for all the helpful replies.

Yes, I have a job offer, and the job is the reason that we are going.

Cheezecake and miniMia, does residency in an EU country officially remove the need for the visa, or does it just improve the chance of the visa requirement being overlooked? In our past experience, it has been quick and easy for my spouse to get residency in my home (EU) country.
No, because it's nationality not residency that counts. Regardless of having residency in an EU country, you'd still need the visa to enter Switzerland because it's not part of the EU. As miniMia says, if you were already living in Europe it would be different, but you're coming from outside the EU so the visa rule applies.

It can sometimes be done as Cheezecake says, but takes a lot of persuasion and you could still end up with a "no" answer which would necessitate a trip to either a neighbouring country if you're lucky or back to Canada to get the visa.

I think you're better off applying in Canada and he waits until he gets the visa before moving over here. That's the correct procedure and a few weeks apart won't be unbearable.
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Old 29.06.2014, 17:23
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Re: non-EU spouse needs D visa?

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Thanks for all the helpful replies.

Yes, I have a job offer, and the job is the reason that we are going.

Cheezecake and miniMia, does residency in an EU country officially remove the need for the visa, or does it just improve the chance of the visa requirement being overlooked? In our past experience, it has been quick and easy for my spouse to get residency in my home (EU) country.
Yes. If he were already living in an EU country he would not need the D entry visa.

Just go apply for it in Canada and tell them you will pick it up in Europe. I'm sure it's not the first time they have done this.
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Old 29.06.2014, 19:33
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Re: non-EU spouse needs D visa?

I just found this post completely by accident actually. I was looking for something else.

Waiting for marriage visa approval, looking for a shortcut

Although there is conflicting information on this topic, maybe you want to thoroughly research this issue before you decide to do anything that is not strictly by the book, ie, have your husband apply for and receive his permit before he arrives.
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Old 29.06.2014, 21:18
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Re: non-EU spouse needs D visa?

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Just go apply for it in Canada and tell them you will pick it up in Europe. I'm sure it's not the first time they have done this.
If only it is as easy as asking.

It indeed counts where you live. I lived in Prague thus my consulate was in Vienna. I have asked multiple times, in written and in person to lift this obligatory visa picking. Because as i have permanent residency in Schengen country, i don't need an entry visa as such and this visa costs nothing anyway (as husband is Swiss). But when my approval came, it was written "Go pick your visa in Vienna consulate". I obviously already moved to CH so husband called Zurich migrations and yet again explained the situation. They agreed i don't need to go to Vienna and go register straight away.

Now, I had nothing to lose. If they said "no", fine, i'd fly to Vienna. Your wife on the other hand is in a different position,eunoneu. I highly doubt they will let her receive a permit without visa at all. There is a big chance they send her back to Canada. Why risk this? Just wait until she gets it, it will not take much.
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Old 29.06.2014, 22:55
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Re: non-EU spouse needs D visa?

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If only it is as easy as asking.

It indeed counts where you live. I lived in Prague thus my consulate was in Vienna. I have asked multiple times, in written and in person to lift this obligatory visa picking. Because as i have permanent residency in Schengen country, i don't need an entry visa as such and this visa costs nothing anyway (as husband is Swiss). But when my approval came, it was written "Go pick your visa in Vienna consulate". I obviously already moved to CH so husband called Zurich migrations and yet again explained the situation. They agreed i don't need to go to Vienna and go register straight away.

Now, I had nothing to lose. If they said "no", fine, i'd fly to Vienna. Your wife on the other hand is in a different position,eunoneu. I highly doubt they will let her receive a permit without visa at all. There is a big chance they send her back to Canada. Why risk this? Just wait until she gets it, it will not take much.
You are married to a Swiss. The rules are different for those married to the citizen of the country you are moving to rather than married to citizens of another country within the FMOP agreement. It's complicated. So best not to confuse situations.

And it's not true they wont' let her. Other on the forum have done it. Howver, it is a risk and the OP needs to understand the risk before she (or they) make their decision on what to do.
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Old 30.06.2014, 00:48
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Re: non-EU spouse needs D visa?

The discussion here is helping a lot. Thank you all.

I do have one question to clarify: while the visa application is in progress, is it illegal to enter Switzerland, or all of Schengen?

There is one additional detail I should mention: on our way from Canada to Switzerland, we plan to spend a few weeks in Schengen (and we will be entering Schengen in Germany). It is almost certain that the visa will be ready before we want to enter Switzerland, but it probably won't be before we leave Canada for Germany.

I find it hard to believe that a German border guard would care that we have a visa application in progress in Switzerland, especially since if we were moving to Germany instead of Switzerland, we wouldn't even need any such visa in the first place. Am I wrong?

Anyway, we have a visa application in progress at the consulate in Canada. We are still hoping that the visa arrives before we leave for Germany. If it does not, we will try to pick up the visa in Germany or Austria. I will update the forum with how it turns out.
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Old 15.09.2016, 12:20
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Re: non-EU spouse needs D visa?

Hi All,

I realise this is an old thread, but I thought I would try and give it a 'bump'.

I am interested in people saying that you can simply 'pick up' the visa. From my reading of the application requirements, the person receiving the visa actually needs to send in their passport for the visa D? Thus, if they need to apply in Canada they actually need to be in Canada?

Have I misunderstood it? Can you be in Switzerland on a schengen exemption (this question is for a US citizen) and then apply for the Visa D and when it's ready fly to the US to pick it up?

Cheers
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Old 15.09.2016, 15:51
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Re: non-EU spouse needs D visa?

The following was our experience over two years ago. Your mileage may vary.

We sent in the initial application by mail to the consulate in Montreal. The application required only copies of the passport, not the passport itself. We did mail the application from within Canada.

About six weeks later, we received by e-mail an authorization to issue a visa. The authorization was not sent to the Canadian spouse who applied for the visa, but to the proposed Swiss employer of the EU spouse, who forwarded it to us. In fact, the Canadian spouse that applied for the visa was never directly notified in any way of the outcome of the application, only indirectly via the EU spouse's proposed employer.

We took a printout of the authorization in person (with the passport) to the Swiss embassy in Berlin. It took a couple of hours for them to contact Montreal, and they were at first unsure if they could do it, but eventually they issued the visa in Berlin without any hassle.

I hope this is helpful.
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