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Old 02.02.2011, 18:01
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Non EU wife entering on Schengen visa refused permit by Bern commune. Help needed pls

Dear Friends

I am UK citizen. Wife is Indian citizen but with permanent residency in UK.

After suggestions from this forum members, I came to Bern with her as she has a valid Schengen Visa.

After going to Bern commune office, I was given my B permit for 5 years on the spot but the lady took my wife's passport inside and came back to tell me that my wife needs to go back to UK and apply for a family reunion visa.

I had heard experiences in this forum where it worked for some people in my situation and their non EU spouses got the permit along with the EU permit. But I have been unlucky.

Can you please suggest what we should do? We already have vacated our apartment in London and it will be very hard to go back and file the application in London.

Is there any point in trying to go to commune again and trying our luck as we may come across a different officer who might help and give her the permit.

Finally, even if we do that, I just wish to make sure that if she files for family reunion visa, she is allowed to come into Switzerland on her existing Schengen.

As it always has been, your valuable views will be very helpful to me.

Thanks in advance
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Old 02.02.2011, 18:19
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Re: Non EU wife entering on Scehngen visa refused permit by Bern commune. Help needed

I think this is wrong as you're married - they either accept it or they don't. She has the same status as you unless they doubt the marriage - sounds like they don't.

Our Forum Expert, SwissBob, will turn up soon to give his opinion.

Did you present the minion with your marriage certificate? Where were you married?
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Old 02.02.2011, 18:58
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Re: Non EU wife entering on Scehngen visa refused permit by Bern commune. Help needed

Think the issue is she's entered on the wrong visa. Certainly in most EU countries switching from visit isn't allowed, precisley to stop people entering as a visitor and attempting to adjust their status then. Certinaly that's the case for UK, but CH isn't UK and it issn't EU either.....
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Old 02.02.2011, 19:27
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Re: Non EU wife entering on Scehngen visa refused permit by Bern commune. Help needed

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I think this is wrong as you're married - they either accept it or they don't. She has the same status as you unless they doubt the marriage - sounds like they don't.

Our Forum Expert, SwissBob, will turn up soon to give his opinion.

Did you present the minion with your marriage certificate? Where were you married?
I was married in India but my wife has UK permanent residency and all other visas based on that marriage certificate, How can I get in touch with SwissBob. He has not suggested anything yet.

Thanks for your comments.
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Old 02.02.2011, 20:43
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Re: Non EU wife entering on Scehngen visa refused permit by Bern commune. Help needed

The commune office is entirely correct: a "Schengen Visa" is a visitor's visa, and gives no right of abode in the Schengen Area.

Regardless of her UK permanent residency status, because she is not a UK national, she will indeed need to apply for a family reunion visa.

If she has a multiple-entry Schengen visa, she will be able to visit during this application period,
BUT
if she has a single-entry Schengen visa, she will also need to reapply for a new Schengen Visa before she is able to return to the Schengen area.

NB There are strict time limits on being in the Schengen Area on a Schengen Visa (IIRC, a maximum of 90 days in any 180 day period, from first arrival in the Schengen Area).

HTH
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Old 02.02.2011, 22:02
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Pretty much what WJ said. She'll need to pop back to the Uk and apply for the correct visa. Once she has that it will be plain sailing. If she is in Switzerland when it is issued she can arrange to pick it up from any Swiss embassy just across the border.
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Old 02.02.2011, 22:12
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Re: Non EU wife entering on Scehngen visa refused permit by Bern commune. Help needed

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After going to Bern commune office, I was given my B permit for 5 years on the spot but the lady took my wife's passport inside and came back to tell me that my wife needs to go back to UK and apply for a family reunion visa.
I know this does sounds unfair as you are married, but this is not unusual. The UK does the same thing in reverse. If a UK citizen marries a non EU national and if the couple decides to move to the UK, the citizen has to make an application for the spouse before entering the UK.
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Old 02.02.2011, 23:17
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Re: Non EU wife entering on Schengen visa refused permit by Bern commune. Help needed

Sholay I am so sorry you are having to go through this. Hope you get it sorted soon so you can be together.
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Old 02.02.2011, 23:58
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Re: Non EU wife entering on Scehngen visa refused permit by Bern commune. Help needed

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I know this does sounds unfair as you are married, but this is not unusual. The UK does the same thing in reverse. If a UK citizen marries a non EU national and if the couple decides to move to the UK, the citizen has to make an application for the spouse before entering the UK.
Not strictly true - if they live in EU they can move to UK and still use EU rules - no need for UK spouse visa, under the 'Surinder Singh' ruling.
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Old 03.02.2011, 08:55
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Re: Non EU wife entering on Schengen visa refused permit by Bern commune. Help needed

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Pretty much what WJ said. She'll need to pop back to the Uk and apply for the correct visa. Once she has that it will be plain sailing. If she is in Switzerland when it is issued she can arrange to pick it up from any Swiss embassy just across the border.
Thank you so much for all your replies folks.
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Old 03.02.2011, 10:47
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Re: Non EU wife entering on Schengen visa refused permit by Bern commune. Help needed

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Pretty much what WJ said. She'll need to pop back to the Uk and apply for the correct visa. Once she has that it will be plain sailing. If she is in Switzerland when it is issued she can arrange to pick it up from any Swiss embassy just across the border.
I'm going to be in the same situation. I'm american but a permanent resident in the UK (husband is scottish). I have been coming and going as a visitor as we will be keeping a house in Scotland but only go back 1 weekend every 3 weeks so I will exceed the maximum stay for a visitor in July/August time.

I was concerned that if I apply for a family reunion visa that I would have to send my passport - is that true? If I did have to send it (to london office) then I would be stuck in the UK? If I can apply from the UK, keep my passport and pick up the visa from a Swiss embassy nearby that would be better.
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Old 03.02.2011, 11:35
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I'm going to be in the same situation. I'm american but a permanent resident in the UK (husband is scottish). I have been coming and going as a visitor as we will be keeping a house in Scotland but only go back 1 weekend every 3 weeks so I will exceed the maximum stay for a visitor in July/August time.
It doesn't work like that.

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I was concerned that if I apply for a family reunion visa that I would have to send my passport - is that true? If I did have to send it (to london office) then I would be stuck in the UK? If I can apply from the UK, keep my passport and pick up the visa from a Swiss embassy nearby that would be better.
You can apply in person - they will take a copy of your passport.
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Old 03.02.2011, 12:16
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Re: Non EU wife entering on Schengen visa refused permit by Bern commune. Help needed

Thanks Swiss Bob - sorry to keep picking your brain but my husband's company was supposed to sort it out but just sent us a letter in German saying I could come and go as a visitor. Not much help really. Also, on the swiss imigration page it says that a visitor can only spend 180 days of the year in Switzerland. Which is why I was thinking I could only do the back and forth thing for a limited time. I actually have no desire to get swiss residency and prefer the visitor option but would probably spend close to 300 days here.
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Old 03.02.2011, 12:21
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Re: Non EU wife entering on Schengen visa refused permit by Bern commune. Help needed

It's 180 days in the Schengen Zone, not just in CH.
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Old 03.02.2011, 12:31
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Re: Non EU wife entering on Schengen visa refused permit by Bern commune. Help needed

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Thanks Swiss Bob - sorry to keep picking your brain but my husband's company was supposed to sort it out but just sent us a letter in German saying I could come and go as a visitor. Not much help really. Also, on the swiss imigration page it says that a visitor can only spend 180 days of the year in Switzerland. Which is why I was thinking I could only do the back and forth thing for a limited time. I actually have no desire to get swiss residency and prefer the visitor option but would probably spend close to 300 days here.
The correct rule is 180 days a year AND a maximum of 90 days in 6 months.
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Old 03.02.2011, 18:24
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Re: Non EU wife entering on Schengen visa refused permit by Bern commune. Help needed

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Thanks Swiss Bob - sorry to keep picking your brain but my husband's company was supposed to sort it out but just sent us a letter in German saying I could come and go as a visitor. Not much help really. Also, on the swiss imigration page it says that a visitor can only spend 180 days of the year in Switzerland. Which is why I was thinking I could only do the back and forth thing for a limited time. I actually have no desire to get swiss residency and prefer the visitor option but would probably spend close to 300 days here.
Spending 300 days in one place does not make you a visitor. It makes you a resident....
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Old 03.02.2011, 19:04
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Re: Non EU wife entering on Schengen visa refused permit by Bern commune. Help needed

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on the swiss imigration page it says that a visitor canonly spend 180 days of the year in Switzerland. Which is why I was thinking I could only do the back and forth thing for a limited time. I actually have no desire to get swiss residency and prefer the visitor option but would probably spend close to 300 days here.
I love it when people figure it out for themselves
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Old 03.02.2011, 19:06
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Re: Non EU wife entering on Schengen visa refused permit by Bern commune. Help needed

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Spending 300 days in one place does not make you a visitor. It makes you a resident....
Not in my heart - its firmly in Scotland where we own our house, have all our possesions, friends, family. Switzerland is just a job (for the hubby) and a furnished apartment. But I will do what I must so that we can be together.
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Old 03.02.2011, 19:12
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Re: Non EU wife entering on Schengen visa refused permit by Bern commune. Help needed

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Not in my heart - its firmly in Scotland where we own our house, have all our possesions, friends, family. Switzerland is just a job (for the hubby) and a furnished apartment. But I will do what I must so that we can be together.
Yes, but in Falkirk?!?!?!



Jus' joshin', really
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Old 01.06.2011, 20:25
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Re: Non EU wife entering on Schengen visa refused permit by Bern commune. Help needed

Hi guys sorry to be resurrecting this thread but since it is similar I thought I might as well post it here. My brother applied for a student visa sicne he should be starting his MBA in a couple of weeks, we are sponsoring him and have already paid for the first courses (this is the method of payment at his university, pay before registering in each course), anyways they told us that his visa was denied and that they would answer us in a letter, they did not want to discuss this on the phone. My brother is non EU, I am non EU but husband is Dutch and in my B permit it says EG/EFTA even though we moved because of me. My question is, can I contest the decision or is it final??
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