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Old 10.07.2015, 11:48
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B permit renewal tied to business plan, need a "plan b"

I have looked over lots of threads but still wanted to post our situation in hopes of getting some opinions and experiences, even comfort.

My husband started work on a B permit last October 2014 which was approved based on the Swiss company submitting a business plan that included him helping to grow the business in a new way. The letter from OCP says permit renewal is subject to biz plan being fulfilled. The company is in financial trouble, not due to my husband's performance but to core business issues, and my husband has brought in a client and soon another one, which in fact is keeping them afloat (which we now know is why they wanted him). But it may not be enough to keep the business going.

We are afraid that in October when permit expires, if the authorities actually review the business plan/performance they will not renew his permit since targets have not been met. Even if they did renew it, we are afraid the business will close eventually (it is asset management).

So we are looking for a plan B because myself and the children only came over end of June so our b permits are valid until next summer (moreover we've spent a boatload of $$ transferring and have a lease, etc). I also am supposed to have work permission/B permit independent of his permit, but do not yet have my titre de sejour with the specifics on this. If my husband were to take his client with him and start his own business here, he would actually be making MORE money than he is with this outfit he is with now.

So we are looking out our options:
1) He starts a company and applies for b permit anew to run the company (not sure what he would need to show in terms of finances)
2) He buys a Swiss registered company from a friend who is not "using it" and works for it. Or friend hires him to run that company.
3) I start a company with my permit and hopefully can make enough money to justify keeping my permit and having it renewed next year or he moveshis client into my company for revenue.
4) He looks for another job ASAP (recruiters have been talking to him and there seem to be possibilities). He is senior exec level and so perhaps his chances would be pretty good. But we understand moving before 12 months is up is not accepted.
5) Should he lose his permit, me and the kids ride out our B permits until next June, while he lives down the road in France with a friend and figures something out (and if not we go back to USA next year)

Would welcome any thoughts/suggestions as to his chances for receiving a permit renewal or how to increase those chances, how risky it is to start a company (making more money than now > chf250k per year) and hope for permission to reside and be self employed, or thoughts on any options/possibilities good or bad. We have just consulted with a lawyer who basically said we have to make a case to the canton, but I am looking for real life tips and experiences if any are out there. We are aware that there is a certain amount of anti-American worker sentiment out there and afraid our chances are pretty slim right now if we had to reapply...

Many thanks!
Jen
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Old 10.07.2015, 11:56
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Re: B permit renewal tied to business plan, need a "plan b"

I am afraid I don't know anything about your company type options, but number 5 won't work. Your permit and your kids permits are dependant on your husband, if he has to leave so would you. Also (assuming he is a US citizen) he can't stay in France/Schengen for more than 3 months.
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Old 10.07.2015, 13:19
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Re: B permit renewal tied to business plan, need a "plan b"

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I also am supposed to have work permission/B permit independent of his permit, but do not yet have my titre de sejour with the specifics on this. If my husband were to take his client with him and start his own business here, he would actually be making MORE money than he is with this outfit he is with now.

So we are looking out our options:
1) He starts a company and applies for b permit anew to run the company (not sure what he would need to show in terms of finances)
2) He buys a Swiss registered company from a friend who is not "using it" and works for it. Or friend hires him to run that company.
3) I start a company with my permit and hopefully can make enough money to justify keeping my permit and having it renewed next year or he moveshis client into my company for revenue.
4) He looks for another job ASAP (recruiters have been talking to him and there seem to be possibilities). He is senior exec level and so perhaps his chances would be pretty good. But we understand moving before 12 months is up is not accepted.
5) Should he lose his permit, me and the kids ride out our B permits until next June, while he lives down the road in France with a friend and figures something out (and if not we go back to USA next year)

Would welcome any thoughts/suggestions as to his chances for receiving a permit renewal or how to increase those chances, how risky it is to start a company (making more money than now > chf250k per year) and hope for permission to reside and be self employed, or thoughts on any options/possibilities good or bad. We have just consulted with a lawyer who basically said we have to make a case to the canton, but I am looking for real life tips and experiences if any are out there. We are aware that there is a certain amount of anti-American worker sentiment out there and afraid our chances are pretty slim right now if we had to reapply...

Many thanks!
Jen
Firstly your permit may include the right to work, but it will not be independent of your husband's as that's the only reason you're getting it in the first place.

As for 1, 2, 3 and 4 well, in any of these options he/you would need to provide a new business plan plus show the finances to support it and also have to prove that he/you/new employer can't find a Swiss/EU national who could do the job. It doesn't matter that he/you already have a permit, it would be a new position and has to be justified under the non-EU hiring rules.

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

Another problem you need to consider is your banking possibilities. As I expect you've already found you need to sign W-9 forms for any accounts, but this also seems to be having a knock on effect as the banks no longer seem willing to let Americans have business accounts. So how would you be able to run a company without one? You need to talk to your bank about this too. And said account, if you can get one, would also need to be reported on an FBAR every year if the aggregate amount comes to more than $10,000 at any time of the year.
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Old 10.07.2015, 17:14
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Re: B permit renewal tied to business plan, need a "plan b"

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Firstly your permit may include the right to work, but it will not be independent of your husband's as that's the only reason you're getting it in the first place.

As for 1, 2, 3 and 4 well, in any of these options he/you would need to provide a new business plan plus show the finances to support it and also have to prove that he/you/new employer can't find a Swiss/EU national who could do the job. It doesn't matter that he/you already have a permit, it would be a new position and has to be justified under the non-EU hiring rules.

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


Another problem you need to consider is your banking possibilities. As I expect you've already found you need to sign W-9 forms for any accounts, but this also seems to be having a knock on effect as the banks no longer seem willing to let Americans have business accounts. So how would you be able to run a company without one? You need to talk to your bank about this too. And said account, if you can get one, would also need to be reported on an FBAR every year if the aggregate amount comes to more than $10,000 at any time of the year.
Thanks, that is helpful as my husband seems to think it will not be too difficult and I am trying to tell him it will be almost impossible LOL...I know you cannot really answer this but asking your opinion anyway, would him starting a company with guaranteed CHF 250k p.a. plus clients in the pipeline to the tune of CHF 120k p.a. be a solid business proposal? And if said clients are already being serviced by my husband, wouldn't it follow that hiring an unrelated Swiss person to do what he is doing would not suffice? Or is that considered being self employed without a C permit or married to swiss is simply not allowed (which I am thinking is the case) or his new company will still be required to look for Swiss person under the rules (which I am aware of the process/requirements)...if in his plan he came in as CEO and hired a Swiss person or two (to run his office for example) might that help?

Again, I am aware of the restrictions (which is why I am not that hopeful) but we are kind of in a pickle and so exploring as many avenues as possible...
thanks vm
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Old 10.07.2015, 20:40
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Re: B permit renewal tied to business plan, need a "plan b"

Only your canton authorities can tell you for certain. If he can prove that he has more chance of success than his present company seems to and that clients are ready and willing to use his services it may be possible. If he's going to create a few jobs too that will help also. Here's a link regarding business plans (in German, French or Italian).

http://www.kmu.admin.ch/kmu-gruenden...x.html?lang=de

It's not that he needs a C permit or to be married to a Swiss (which he obviously isn't), it's just that either of these two things allow him to start a business without getting prior approval from the authorities. In all other cases a business plan needs to be presented with supporting financial information; the authorities will look at it and then decide if it meets the criteria.

If he goes as a sole trader then obviously he shouldn't need to prove the Swiss/EU thing, but if he goes for a GmbH or other type of company then yes the company will need to prove that it can't find a Swiss/EU national. If it was that easy for non-EU's to set up a business and get permission to live/work here, everyone would be doing it. Note also that a GmbH, etc, needs a Swiss resident to be one of the directors. Whether he could fill that role with the permit renewal up in the air I don't know. Would his friend be willing to fulfill that role if necessary?

Friend or no, be careful when buying a company from someone else.

Best options on what to do with my GmbH in Zug for which I have no use?

Edit:
Reached my posting average limit again so I'll have to reply to your question here re number 5.

It won't work because all your Swiss permits are dependent on your husband having one, the lawyer is wrong if he says otherwise. One of the requirements for getting a dependent's permit is that you live with the main permit holder - you can't do that with you and the kids in Switzerland and him in France.

If he moves to France then he has no Swiss permit and therefore neither do any of you. And it's not as simple as just moving down the road. He would also have to meet France's immigration regulations to get a permit to live in France if he's there for more than 3 months.

Number 4 is an option. I haven't heard of the not switching until 12 months are up, but if his permit is due for renewal in October then if another company is interested in him and are willing to apply for the switch then go for it. It'll take a few weeks/months to get approval I suspect so may not be very far off his permit's expiry date by the time the company gets the yea or nay on it. It is a risk of the answer being no, but most companies don't apply unless they feel they have a good chance of success in the first place as it costs them too much time and money otherwise.

Sound out the cantonal authorities over possibly setting up his own business to guage their reaction and if it seems negative then look for a new job asap.

Last edited by Medea Fleecestealer; 10.07.2015 at 21:24. Reason: Replying to later query
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Old 10.07.2015, 20:47
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Re: B permit renewal tied to business plan, need a "plan b"

Option 4 is the best one. If it does not work then 5.
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Old 10.07.2015, 20:53
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Re: B permit renewal tied to business plan, need a "plan b"

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Option 4 is the best one. If it does not work then 5.
Thanks...would you mind telling me why you think option 4 is better than 1, 2 or 3? We are trying to assess the path of least risk so it would be helpful if you have insight. We are also going to speak to the lawyer about these options but it is always helpful to have some direction/background going into these sorts of things.

Also on #5, previous reply said we would have to leave when hubby lost his permit, however hubby says lawyer told him not the case. Do you have any input or thoughts on that issue? It would in fact be good to let the kids have a full school year here for consistency..

thanks again
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