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Old 16.07.2016, 03:27
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Receiving wife's D visa in time

Hi everyone, thank you so much for being helpful and informative. I read through a bunch of the previous posts in the forum to try to understand the process, but I still have some questions.

I'm starting a new job as a post-doc at EPFL on August 1st. I'm a Norwegian (EFTA) citizen, my wife is Chinese, and permanent resident in Canada. EPFL refused to issue a contract until my date of defence was fixed, so we only sent off her application for a D visa in mid-May, but we still thought we'd have plenty of time.

Yet, we're leaving on Monday the 25th, and we still haven't heard a word... I emailed the Montreal consulate, and they gave me the SYMIC and said they'd sent the papers to Lausanne. So I emailed the Lausanne office, and got a message back saying they were on vacation until July 25th, which freaked me out. However, I realized that I had emailed etrangers.juridique@vd.ch, as that was the address I received an email on when I emailed them a question. So I resent my email to info-etrangers@vd.ch, and am waiting for an answer...

Either way it's getting very tight, because they need to make a decision, send that to the embassy in Montreal, and then we need to send them the passport to get it stamped... So best case is perhaps that they make the determination quickly, and I rent a car and drive to Montreal and back to pick it up (5 hrs each way)...

If they do not approve the visa in time, there's a possible plan B... My wife has a multiple-entry tourism visa to Schengen which is still valid (from previous visits), so she could technically come there as a tourist. Then she would have to leave the country again to get the visa... Two options: Would it be enough to go to Paris, get the visa affixed, and come back? Second option, my wife is actually scheduled to spend a month in China in September, so she could possibly go there, get the visa affixed, and come back (maybe easier, since in France they might want her to be a French resident etc)...

However, would they allow us to take an approved visa and "switch" which embassy issues it (ie. take the SYMIC number and ask that it be issues in Guangzhou instead of in Montreal)? Or would we have to start the application process all over again?

Sorry for all the detail, but I'm quite flummoxed. We are so excited about going to Switzerland, and have been all busy packing, learning French, etc... The embassy homepage states that there is a "simplified procedure" for getting D-visas for spouses of EU/EFTA-citizens etc, so we never somehow imagined it would be a problem.

Any advice is very welcome!
Stian
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Old 16.07.2016, 09:05
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Re: Receiving wife's D visa in time

It might be possible to switch embassies. Others on the forum have reported it is possible. but you need them to agree. Whatever way, you need to get someone in officialdom on the phone to discuss your best course of action.
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Old 16.07.2016, 09:21
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Re: Receiving wife's D visa in time

You can get the visa in any Swiss embassy or consulate, wherever you happen to be at the time - the data is in the computer and they just print it.
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Old 16.07.2016, 12:02
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Re: Receiving wife's D visa in time

Entering the Schengen zone on a tourist visa and then getting the D visa stamped is not certain for a non-EU person needing a Schengen visa.

Getting it stamped in China (with the consulate in China being notified), or in Canada, is certain.
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Old 16.07.2016, 15:31
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Re: Receiving wife's D visa in time

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You can get the visa in any Swiss embassy or consulate, wherever you happen to be at the time - the data is in the computer and they just print it.
Do you have personal experience of this? Because, while it might be in the system, I doubt it's really that easy. Notification is sent to the specific embassy/consulate that the application came from that it's okay for them to issue the visa. Other embassies/consulates elsewhere aren't going to have that info unless it also flags up in the system.
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Old 16.07.2016, 17:17
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Re: Receiving wife's D visa in time

Ask the consulate in Montreal if it will be there in time, and what you should do. When we came here, they made a mistake on my husband's D Visa and put the entry date as August, but we were travellling in July, there was no time to change it. When I contacted them, they said it would be ok, since he was allowed to enter as a tourist for three months. I printed out the e-mail, just in case we would be questioned at the airport in Switzerland, but there was no problem.
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Old 16.07.2016, 18:37
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Re: Receiving wife's D visa in time

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Do you have personal experience of this? Because, while it might be in the system, I doubt it's really that easy. Notification is sent to the specific embassy/consulate that the application came from that it's okay for them to issue the visa. Other embassies/consulates elsewhere aren't going to have that info unless it also flags up in the system.
Yes, I was actually already in Switzerland for more than six months when my work permit was requested (long story, don't ask) and they needed a non-Swiss address to put on file. I gave them one in the Netherlands but when the visa was ready I happened to be in Paris so I just walked into the embassy and asked if I could get it there. 20 minutes later I was out on the street with the visa in my passport and they actually told me that any Swiss consular representative (apart from the 'honorary' type) can issue the visa once it's approved (I suppose it would have been prudent to call ahead and check but I didn't bother).
On another note, the visa was actually spotted and stamped by the passport control guy in Geneva some four months after it expired (at which time I already had the B permit).
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Old 16.07.2016, 19:11
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Re: Receiving wife's D visa in time

Interesting. Thanks for the update.
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Old 17.07.2016, 19:53
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Re: Receiving wife's D visa in time

This is really interesting, because certainly the easiest thing would be for us to go to France (the website seems to indicate that even though there is a consulate in Lyon, only the embassy in Paris deals with visas). I have sent an email to info.etrangers@vd.ch, and also asked my departmental secretary to give them a call to see if we can get it speeded up, if not it's good to know that there's a plan B!

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Yes, I was actually already in Switzerland for more than six months when my work permit was requested (long story, don't ask) and they needed a non-Swiss address to put on file. I gave them one in the Netherlands but when the visa was ready I happened to be in Paris so I just walked into the embassy and asked if I could get it there. 20 minutes later I was out on the street with the visa in my passport and they actually told me that any Swiss consular representative (apart from the 'honorary' type) can issue the visa once it's approved (I suppose it would have been prudent to call ahead and check but I didn't bother).
On another note, the visa was actually spotted and stamped by the passport control guy in Geneva some four months after it expired (at which time I already had the B permit).
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Old 19.07.2016, 15:52
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Re: Receiving wife's D visa in time

Update: Just got the visa authorization, only two days after writing and inquiring. Not sure if it was my email, or the fact that the EPFL HR department also contacted them (I heard the good news through an email forwarded from the EPFL HR department, whereas they have not yet responded to my personal one, so it might have been the latter). Anyway, thank you all for all the useful advice, luckily I won't need it, but I really appreciated it!
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