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  #21  
Old 14.02.2015, 11:30
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Re: Swiss laws apply while not residing in CH?

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Just a shame for the OP that he resides in Switzerland and not in down under (where everything seems to be better according to some people).
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Basic education is far better than in any Anglo-Saxon country, and expat bubbles exist (you are a living proof ), but less than in other places.

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I know both systems intimately and value both for different reasons.
What I meant was Swiss and NZ/OZ system.

But I agree with some posters above, probably easier to bite the bullet and pay up.
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  #22  
Old 14.02.2015, 11:48
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Re: Swiss laws apply while not residing in CH?

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It wasn't "a couple of weeks" it was 6 WEEKS !!!
So the teacher could have suggested a temporary home schooling option. Something along the lines of:

Here is the stuff we will cover in the next 6 weeks. Email me the following written assignments on the following dates etc. You get the idea.

Again, if the kids are not struggling at school, they should be absolutely fine with such an arrangement. Not really much extra work for the teacher either as the written assignments will be the same as for the other kids.

But anyway, the issue was in the end with the authorities, not with the teachers. The teacher(s) might have been fine with it but the authorities, or that particular guy at the Gemeinde, weren't.

Not sure what is selfish (as some posters have suggested) about wanting to take care of your father and wanting your kids to spend some quality time with him (for the last time I think OP said? So sorry if that is the case. One of the heartbreaking aspects of being an expat) but there you go. We all have different priorities.
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  #23  
Old 14.02.2015, 12:06
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Re: Swiss laws apply while not residing in CH?

Depends if home schooling s legal in that canton. I know its allowed in Bern but not Luzern.
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So the teacher could have suggested a temporary home schooling option. Something along the lines of:

Here is the stuff we will cover in the next 6 weeks. Email me the following written assignments on the following dates etc. You get the idea.

Again, if the kids are not struggling at school, they should be absolutely fine with such an arrangement. Not really much extra work for the teacher either as the written assignments will be the same as for the other kids.

But anyway, the issue was in the end with the authorities, not with the teachers. The teacher(s) might have been fine with it but the authorities, or that particular guy at the Gemeinde, weren't.

Not sure what is selfish (as some posters have suggested) about wanting to take care of your father and wanting your kids to spend some quality time with him (for the last time I think OP said? So sorry if that is the case. One of the heartbreaking aspects of being an expat) but there you go. We all have different priorities.
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  #24  
Old 14.02.2015, 12:21
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Re: Swiss laws apply while not residing in CH?

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...
Not sure what is selfish (as some posters have suggested) about wanting to take care of your father and wanting your kids to spend some quality time with him (for the last time I think OP said? So sorry if that is the case. One of the heartbreaking aspects of being an expat) but there you go. We all have different priorities.
Of course it's not selfish, but human and natural.


However, he tried to gamble the system, without consulting teachers and school authorities (or without a kind of agreement), and he lost.


So his only good point in the story is that one you mentioned. And it's the only difference between his case and the guy of the link I posted before, who canceled his daughter's registration at the Gemeinde, let her mother take her to the Philippines for 3 months and then re-enter the country.
The court dismissed the appeal he made against a 1000 fr fine, considering very well every aspect of the story. One of the guy's weakest point was - apart that he tried to circumvent the law - that it's not clear what the girl was about to do in the Philippines during her stay.
Eventually he had to pay additional admin charges for another 2000 fr.


http://www.gerichte.sg.ch/home/diens..._2010_240.html
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  #25  
Old 14.02.2015, 12:42
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Re: Swiss laws apply while not residing in CH?

It's nothing to do with your nationality. The same would apply to someone Swiss. The rules are there to stop certain parents who have a somewhat flexible attitude, such as taking their kids off skiing for the day when they should be at school or bobsledging etc. We'd all like to take holidays during the year when it's cheaper than school holidays but we can't. If your kids are signed up at school, how could you say they aren't residing here? You want them to be educated but only when it suits you.

"So I just de-registered them and left the country"
Don't know how old your kids are and do not disagree with you having to go for such a family emergency but 6 weeks to me seems an exaggeration.

You can get a walk-in legal consultation in some towns. I think you should get a professional opinion.

I don't know what it's like in other countries but there seems to me to be a very low % of "bunking off" here, though maybe teachers could enlighten us on that.

I think you will end up paying the fine too & would certainly be interested in knowing the outcome of your situation.
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  #26  
Old 14.02.2015, 13:24
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Re: Swiss laws apply while not residing in CH?

I would also add about kids being ill during school here - my kids were always told to get the work off someone else to catch up. The teachers have never assisted the kid in catching up or provided work details to be done at home.
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  #27  
Old 14.02.2015, 14:10
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Re: Swiss laws apply while not residing in CH?

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I would also add about kids being ill during school here - my kids were always told to get the work off someone else to catch up. The teachers have never assisted the kid in catching up or provided work details to be done at home.
They do here. They have a pair system where one kid in the class is responsible for collecting the work and giving it to their counterpart if that kid is sick. They usually arrange it so that the pairs are kids who live near to each other to make it easier to hand the work over.
The class teacher then checks that the sick kid has received all the work when they hope back to school but it's upon the individual subject teachers to check on the actual work done.
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  #28  
Old 16.02.2015, 10:57
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Re: Swiss laws apply while not residing in CH?

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Of course OP's children have the right and the duty to attend school, independently from any question of what their father did.

Anyway they got lucky that the case is not penal, because otherwise not only would the visa not have been granted, but also the family's permits revoked, I guess. If I understand it right, we are not there yet.


The thing is that quite every continental European country tries to protect childrens' right, plus intends to put a barrier on human trafficking, not without success. Basic education is far better than in any Anglo-Saxon country, and expat bubbles exist (you are a living proof ), but less than in other places.

I do agree with you that bureaucrats sometimes overreact and overact.
However, consider that a 6-week absence is not just a short time (the law speaking about 2 half-days in a whole year, if I got it right), and depending on the number of your relatives down under, one could justify a "Holiday" for years.


Again, it's the law. Of course sometimes the law can be stressed. But for sure not in the way you try to.


Again here we go, the old question about mistrust towards institutions and authorities.
Yes, authorities sometimes exaggerate. They commit errors, too.
But it's much more unlikely to get killed by authorities in Switzerland than in quite any other country, so ... maybe something doesn't work so terribly bad.

Anyhow, in your case authorities want to protect your children from your bias. And also if I can understand you, they are not completely wrong.

Here I found a similar case of SG of a couple of years ago:

http://www.gerichte.sg.ch/home/diens..._2010_240.html
Thanks you so much Bucentaure for this link it has been very helpful, if a bit surprising. It seems that for a neutral country CH has no trouble enforcing jurisdiction on foreigners living in their own countries once they return to CH. The case you cited seems very similar to mine and I doubt that I would get far. I think I am better to cut my losses at this point and just pay the problem to go away.

I think my error was trying to apply my notion on what is fair and reasonable to the swiss legal system and this might be a part of the culture shock process. I was thinking about it and realized that if I was living in many other countries (e.g. far east) the law can also be very arbitrary and in fact extra bribes and charges are part of how one "greases the wheels" so to speak. I should not have expected CH to be any different. As another poster said this is part of the adjustment process. Next time we will budget for it under "emergency fines".

Just to clarify for the thread. In my case the 6 weeks consisted on 3 weeks of holidays so it was really only 3 weeks. I don't think the time duration matters - I have heard of people getting fined for one day. The thing that matters is that if you cross the bureaucrats they get pissed off and they have a big stick.

We have asked for work to be given but this was denied. We did then teach the kids ourselves while we were away. One kid is in kindergarten, the other is in grade 2 and they did their reading, math etc from books we bought while there.

I can confirm there are people who take their kids out for holidays - I am certain the person I spoke to did not photoshop their kids in to their google+ stream for the road trip. It seems to be very much dependent on the Gemenide and the Swissness of the people asking (or maybe on how well they know to write the nice letter in perfect German or "grease the wheels" in other ways). Either way, good for them for being lucky/smart and getting by.
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  #29  
Old 16.02.2015, 11:35
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Re: Swiss laws apply while not residing in CH?

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The thing that matters is that if you cross the bureaucrats they get pissed off and they have a big stick.

Your problem is you didn't try and cross them, you tried to outsmart them, this is the bit they don't like
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  #30  
Old 16.02.2015, 11:58
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Re: Swiss laws apply while not residing in CH?

Are you a single parent?

If not - why couldn't your wife/partner stay with the children in CH and have joined you later?
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  #31  
Old 16.02.2015, 12:21
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Re: Swiss laws apply while not residing in CH?

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Thanks you so much Bucentaure for this link it has been very helpful, if a bit surprising. It seems that for a neutral country CH has no trouble enforcing jurisdiction on foreigners living in their own countries once they return to CH.
What you seem to be missing is the fact you actually committed the "offence" while living and registered in Switzerland. As I gather from your first post, you asked for your children to be given leave, this permission was not granted. You then deregistered only to re-register 6 weeks later. In the eyes of the "law" that is nothing more than an attempt to circumvent the law, which is an offence in itself.

The children were under Swiss jurisdicition when permission was denied. They then left the country which resulted in a fine. If you had not returned, the deregistering would eventually be viewed as permanent. The fine would eventually be nullified (in some cases, proof of school attendance in the other country, when the stay is not extended, may be required).
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  #32  
Old 16.02.2015, 15:03
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Re: Swiss laws apply while not residing in CH?

Some people have got away with this, others not but it is not recommended. We took our kids out for 6 weeks to Australia but it required a bit of planning and letter writing.
Anyone else in the same boat, here are some tips.
1st talk to the children's teacher direct and get their support.
Enrol them in the school where you will be staying.
Write a polite letter to the Principal explaining the reason and request homework while away.
Easy peasy.
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  #33  
Old 16.02.2015, 15:49
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Re: Swiss laws apply while not residing in CH?

Easy peasy I would highly doubt. Maybe depends on whether you live in a city or village type area as to the reaction of those who wield the stick.
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