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Old 18.09.2016, 04:59
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Residing in Switzerland without gainful activity


Referencingthis SEM page:



https://www.sem.admin.ch/sem/en/home/themen/fza_schweiz-eu-efta/meldeverfahren/ref_faq.html#Residingin Switzerland without gainful activity



andparticularly this referenced fact sheet:



https://www.sem.admin.ch/content/dam/data/sem/eu/fza/personenfreizuegigkeit/factsheets/fs-nichterwerbstaetige-e.pdf



Does anybodyhave any idea what “adequate financial means” means?



Background …



Now that theChinese have finished buying up Vancouver BC (British Columbia) and have comedown the road here to Seattle to do the same:



http://www.seattletimes.com/business/real-estate/seattle-becomes-no-1-us-market-for-chinese-homebuyers/



it may betime to sell my waterfront dirt (the land alone is now worth several megabucks)and do something else.



I’m a U.S.citizen of Swedish ancestry.
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  #2  
Old 18.09.2016, 08:56
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Re: Residing in Switzerland without gainful activity

lets hope it's double several megabucks.....
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Old 18.09.2016, 10:03
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Re: Residing in Switzerland without gainful activity

If you have EU citizenship, it is possible to move to Switzerland to live without gainful employment to the extent that sufficient financial means can be demonstrated. Generally, sufficient financial means mean a minimum annual income of CHF 39'000 for a single EU citizen and CHF 70'000 for a couple. This can be somewhat lower if the person resides in his own home and varies somewhat from canton to canton.

US citizens are, of course, not EU citizens and so would not qualify for the above. However, non-EU citizens can obtain a Swiss residence permit without gainful employment according to AUG Artikel 30 under a provision called "important public interest". This provision generally means that the non-EU person is wealthy and will be paying substantial taxes to reside here. Wealthy non-EU citizens, in particular, Russians, use this provision to obtain a residence permit. See this SRF article and the accompanying radio broadcast for an overview:

http://www.srf.ch/news/schweiz/wenig...-ausser-russen

This NZZ article mentions that the top users of Art. 30 are: Russians, Turks, Serbs, Canadians, Americans and Indians in that order:

http://www.nzz.ch/schweiz/ueber-100-...ung-1.18308721
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Old 18.09.2016, 10:55
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Re: Residing in Switzerland without gainful activity

I know another US citizen whose 'mere millions' were not enough to interest the Permit Gods. He was given the impression that he fell well short of the definition of wealthy enough to buy an entry ticket to the Alpine Paradise.

But this was in a low tax canton where lots of people are trying to live. If one approached one of the less financially secure high tax cantons, though, one might get an altogether different response.

One thing you will find is that everything differs by canton and Gemeinde, and even within a canton or Gemeinde no two officials will interpret a regulation the same way or give the same answer.

So give it a try - who knows, if your 'megabucks' are mega enough, and you are planning on leaving a goodly portion of said megabucks in the Swiss tax coffers, you might get lucky.

---

Have you visited Switzerland for a long period of time yet? Be aware that all is not as it seems from the outside.

You can come here for a three month visit. Do that a few times, see if you actually like it here... before handing over your megabucks.


---

A word of caution, though: You do know that your Swiss neighbors will see you in exactly the same light as you see the Chinese who are moving to the US, don't you?
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Old 20.09.2016, 12:43
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Re: Residing in Switzerland without gainful activity

hmmm so my situation is slightly different: I am an EU citizen, was in Switzerland for 2 years employed by an agency on a contract, which ended at the end of June.

Since I had short term contracts (1 year at a time) I sub-rented apartments.

I applied for a jobseeker's permit as soon as I knew my contract would end, and I got a 3-month L permit.

I now have a new, well paid job, and I applied to convert/extend my permit, since my sublet is almost up and right now of course I can't rent anything - my new job is with a UK firm, working partly from the Netherlands and partly from home - which is where the crunch comes, since i would like home to remain in CH, but cannot get an apartment until I have a new work permit, and the Migrationsamt are asking me questions about why I need a permit etc.

Does anyone have a suggestion as to what I can put forward as my case to the immigration authorities?

I have already pointed out to them that it was my conscious decision last October to finalise my move to Switzerland, and at the time I had no idea my job (the one i had a contract for) would be outsourced to somewhere else at the beginning of July...

Thanks for any pointers.
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Old 20.09.2016, 12:49
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Re: Residing in Switzerland without gainful activity

Uhm, fairly simple? Either you show you have sufficient funds to live here or you have a work contract.


For the Swiss authorities a job with a UK firm and part of the job in the Netherlands does not automatically constitute a permit here.


As to "I have already pointed out to them that it was my conscious decision last October to finalise my move to Switzerland, and at the time I had no idea my job (the one i had a contract for) would be outsourced to somewhere else at the beginning of July...": that sh*t happens to a lot of people.
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Old 20.09.2016, 12:55
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Re: Residing in Switzerland without gainful activity

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Uhm, fairly simple? Either you show you have sufficient funds to live here or you have a work contract.


For the Swiss authorities a job with a UK firm and part of the job in the Netherlands does not automatically constitute a permit here.


As to "I have already pointed out to them that it was my conscious decision last October to finalise my move to Switzerland, and at the time I had no idea my job (the one i had a contract for) would be outsourced to somewhere else at the beginning of July...": that sh*t happens to a lot of people.
Yes that stuff happens to a lot of people - however my question is very different: as a EU citizen, I can apply to live in CH if I have a work contract or sufficient funds - well, I DO that, I mean sufficient funds from work for a non-CH company.

So, my question, once again, is SINCE the Migrationsamt are questioning why I want to live in CH, has anyone got any constructive ideas or examples from their experience of how this can work?
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Old 20.09.2016, 12:59
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Re: Residing in Switzerland without gainful activity

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So, my question, once again, is SINCE the Migrationsamt are questioning why I want to live in CH, has anyone got any constructive ideas or examples from their experience of how this can work?

How about you tell them why YOU want to live here?
The question itself is not surprising as you do not have a Swiss work contract.
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Old 20.09.2016, 13:05
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Re: Residing in Switzerland without gainful activity

well, I thought I did - I moved here in September 2014 for work, and in October 2015 I just decided that I liked it enough to stay: expensive, yes, but a good standard of living, transport etc.

I'll try repeating it to them.

thanks.
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Old 20.09.2016, 13:11
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Re: Residing in Switzerland without gainful activity

Maybe consider another tack:

How does your living here benefit Switzerland?

As in, will that new well-paid job result in continued, or better yet increased, contributions to Swiss tax coffers?

Think of it from the Swiss side if you want to win hearts and minds and permits...
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Old 20.09.2016, 13:13
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Re: Residing in Switzerland without gainful activity

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Maybe consider another tack:

How does your living here benefit Switzerland?

As in, will that new well-paid job result in continued, or better yet increased, contributions to Swiss tax coffers?

Think of it from the Swiss side if you want to win hearts and minds and permits...

ha yeah that's kind of my reasoning - I will spell that out, although it was obvious to ME that if I go I will no longer pay taxes here...

thanks.
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Old 01.10.2016, 04:40
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Re: Residing in Switzerland without gainful activity


Meloncollie,

Yes, I havebeen to Switzerland numerous times over the past 25 years. I also used to spendtime at the Frankfurt/Main and Coventry (UK) offices of a Silicon Valley-basedsoftware company I operated.

I’d probably be OKwith the 90-out-of-180-days scheme, but from what I’ve read here (over the past 6 months or so) and elsewhere,I’d have difficulty renting a flat long-term and buying a little car to keepthere continuously for use when I’m there.

I get theimpression that it’s not as difficult if one starts a CH business, which Imight do anyway. Such would be in the field of “industrial” software. Could Ithen simply have the corporate entity hire me (this is what I did in Germany).

And yes, Irealize that I might be perceived as doing in CH what the Chinese are doinghere, but with one difference … the Chinese generally never occupy what theybuy. It’s purely a “safe place” to put their cash outside of China. Vancouver BC is presentlyconsidering adding a “foreigner non-occupancy” tax to discourage this kind ofsituation.
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Old 01.10.2016, 09:33
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Re: Residing in Switzerland without gainful activity

Alaska guy,

Rent a place in a holiday resort. Yes, you will pay a premium - but paying over the odds is what Switzerland expects of a wealthy foreigner in return for being allowed to tarry awhile in the Alpine Paradise.

You could also look into buying rather than renting. As a non-resident foreigner your options are limited due to restrictive property ownership laws, but there are still some holiday homes allowed for sale to non-resident foreigners. (There is a long wait, IIRC over a year, for approval in some cantons, though.)

Yes, prices are high for properties that a foreigner without residence is allowed to buy, think in the millions, but you should be playing in that league anyway if you are considering trying to move here as a non-EU without gainful activity.

Switzerland is very friendly to the very wealthy. The high barriers that the rest of us non-EU workaday folks face fall away for the UHNW.

You should look into the cantons where it is more common for these types of agreements to be made, such as the cantons where Pauschalsteuer is most often granted. (Pauschalsteuer is a tax agreement to use a different method of taxing foreigners who are not gainfully employed.)

I believe Valais , Vaud, and the Graubunden are more often considered Pauschalsteuer friendly. While taxation deals and residency deals are two different things, I am suggesting this because cantons where Pauschalsteuer deals are more often made might have a more welcoming attitude than in the cantons where they have been voted out, or where the money is not really needed.

Here's an article with a graphic showing where Paschalsteuer is most often granted:

http://www.tagesanzeiger.ch/schweiz/...story/19285016

---

But now you are talking about starting a business? That's a different kettle o' fish. Starting a business does not automatically get you a permit, as many folks have found out to their chagrin.

Although... We have recently seen two posts by Americans who claim to have been told by the Swiss embassy in the US or one of the consulates that it is very easy for a non-EU person to start even a small business with minimial capital and claim to have been assured a permit in Switzerland via that route. One was a child care place, one a restaurant. Now this goes against all received wisdom from the permit experts here... so either someone at the Swiss embassy/consulate is being over optimistic, the poster misunderstood, or the posters were telling porkies. Neither poster ever returned with a follow-up, so who knows what actually happened in the end.

But again, if you are UHNW or are starting a business that will employ many Swiss citizens and pay a very large tax bill the barriers are surmountable. Seek professional guidance.
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Old 01.10.2016, 10:21
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Re: Residing in Switzerland without gainful activity

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Meloncollie,

Yes, I havebeen to Switzerland numerous times over the past 25 years. I also used to spendtime at the Frankfurt/Main and Coventry (UK) offices of a Silicon Valley-basedsoftware company I operated.

I’d probably be OKwith the 90-out-of-180-days scheme, but from what I’ve read here (over the past 6 months or so) and elsewhere,I’d have difficulty renting a flat long-term and buying a little car to keepthere continuously for use when I’m there.

I get theimpression that it’s not as difficult if one starts a CH business, which Imight do anyway. Such would be in the field of “industrial” software. Could Ithen simply have the corporate entity hire me (this is what I did in Germany).

And yes, Irealize that I might be perceived as doing in CH what the Chinese are doinghere, but with one difference … the Chinese generally never occupy what theybuy. It’s purely a “safe place” to put their cash outside of China. Vancouver BC is presentlyconsidering adding a “foreigner non-occupancy” tax to discourage this kind ofsituation.
There are plenty of issues here with foreigners who buy up property and leave them empty. This leaves less property for the locals and drives up prices.

Not all Swiss have a problem with this. Yesterday I was visiting an apartment and the owner told me there are many apartments in the building that are holiday homes for rich foreigner. He used this as a selling point saying the building was quiet and basically said that they were the kind of people one would like to have as friends...

As was said, starting a business is not really a path to residency.

Anyway, there is only one way to find out!

Go do your application! You won't know 'til you try and the worst that can happen is they say no.

Good luck!
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Old 01.10.2016, 11:19
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Re: Residing in Switzerland without gainful activity

Anyone wanting a tax deal with have to pay at least 120k in tax, so broadly income in the 400k plus range. Thats for EU.
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Old 01.10.2016, 11:24
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Re: Residing in Switzerland without gainful activity

"I get the impression that it’s not as difficult if one starts a CH business, which I might do anyway. Such would be in the field of “industrial” software. Could I then simply have the corporate entity hire me (this is what I did in Germany)."

It is indeed relatively easy for a US citizen to move to Germany and then set up a business/ become self-employed. You might wish to consult the toytowngermany.com forum for more information.

As indicated by melloncollie, it can be possible for non-EU citizens to set up a business in Switzerland, if it will be sizable and is planned to employ a number of Swiss, and then obtain a work/residence permit in the process. You might wish to read this article about Dinara
Kulibajewa, a daughter of the Kazakh president, who successfully did that some years ago. She later changed her status after a law change and liquidated the firm:

http://www.nzz.ch/schweiz/die-millia...kam-1.18032097
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Old 01.10.2016, 16:37
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Re: Residing in Switzerland without gainful activity

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I get theimpression that it’s not as difficult if one starts a CH business, which Imight do anyway. Such would be in the field of “industrial” software. Could Ithen simply have the corporate entity hire me (this is what I did in Germany).
While yes you might be able to start a business here that business will still have to prove they can't find a Swiss/EU national who could do that job.

Non-EU hiring criteria is laid out here:

https://www.sem.admin.ch/sem/en/home...zulassung.html

Even more emphasis is being put on priorising hiring of Swiss nationals, even over EU since the recent vote to curb immigration from the EU back in February 2014. What the government decides to do about it will come into force around February 2017. So unless you're talking about a specialised "industrial" software expertise I wouldn't count on that being a route into Switzerland.

The other problem you would have with this idea is that Swiss banks will no longer allow American citizens to have business accounts due to FATCA. The best you would get is a simple checking/salary account - though if you do end up with megabucks I suppose they might change their minds.

You need to research how FATCA, US taxation in general, FBAR reporting, etc, would affect you if you do decide to sell up and move.

https://www.irs.gov/individuals/inte...-aliens-abroad

Of course if you can claim Swedish citizenship and then dump the US one it will make your whole expat life easier, no matter where you live in the world. But if you decide on that route, again do it before you sell otherwise you'll be liable for a big US exit tax bill on those megabucks.
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