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Old 02.05.2017, 03:54
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Non EU Work Status

Hi There,

I believe that as an EU citizen if we move to Switzerland my Non EU spouse is granted the same rights as me and is allowed to work in Switzerland. We therefore plan to move to Switzerland soon and she has a job lined up. My question is do we have to psychically live in Switzerland for her to be legally allowed to work. To begin we will most likely live in Geneva but I like the Idea of living in France and my spouse working in Geneva but do not know if this is possible. I know she is entitled to work in Switzerland as a relative of an EU citizen and thus would think this would apply anywhere in the EU??

Any advice would be warmly appreciated.
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Old 02.05.2017, 07:28
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Re: Non EU Work Status

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Hi There,

I believe that as an EU citizen if we move to Switzerland my Non EU spouse is granted the same rights as me and is allowed to work in Switzerland. We therefore plan to move to Switzerland soon and she has a job lined up. My question is do we have to psychically live in Switzerland for her to be legally allowed to work. To begin we will most likely live in Geneva but I like the Idea of living in France and my spouse working in Geneva but do not know if this is possible. I know she is entitled to work in Switzerland as a relative of an EU citizen and thus would think this would apply anywhere in the EU??

Any advice would be warmly appreciated.
1 EU citizen needs a job first, then the non EU can apply for work permit, not the other way around. You can´t just show up here with only the non EU having a job. Unlikely/ifficult as well as the employer needs to go through the process of hiring a non EU.

2 Yes, you need to live in Switzerland as frontalier permits are restricted for non EU, better check that out

3 Whatever the permit in Switzerland does NOT count as work permit anywhere else in the EU as Switzerland is not part of the EU
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  #3  
Old 02.05.2017, 08:32
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Re: Non EU Work Status

roegner is spot on. If you don't move here first your spouse will come under the non-EU hiring criteria where Swiss employers have to prove they can't find a Swiss/EU national who could do the job. This is obviously more difficult than if your spouse has a dependent's permit - but they can only get that if you move here.

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

And yes, you have to physically live here. If you move to France they would lose any right to work here. The rules for non-EU nationals to acquire a G (cross border) permit is that they must live in a border zone for at least 6 months, but more importantly must have permanent residency in that country which would take 5 years to acquire. Without that the cross border permit isn't issued to non-EU nationals.

Residency in France doesn't grant your spouse the right to work in another EU country unless you also move to that country. See this example:

"James is an American citizen living in Italy with his mother and his Italian stepfather, Giuseppe. James would like to move to Spain and look for a job. His parents cannot move with him but are in a position to support him financially.

When applying for a residence card in Spain, the Spanish immigration authorities told James that although he has a residence permit in Italy as a family member of an EU citizen, this does not give him the automatic right to Spanish residency. His right to reside in the EU is dependent on Giuseppe's EU citizenship. Giuseppe would have to move with James to Spain and prove that he has sufficient economic resources for both of them."

http://europa.eu/youreurope/citizens...d/index_en.htm

And yes, if you move here and you don't have a job you will need to show you can support both of you financially.

"The following requirements must be met in order for family reunification to take place:

•Your apartment must be large enough – by Swiss standards – to accommodate the entire family.
If you are self-employed or not employed: you must prove that you have adequate financial resources to cover the living expenses of family members."

https://www.ch.ch/en/family-reunification-eu-efta/
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Old 04.05.2017, 04:13
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Re: Non EU Work Status

Roegner & Medea,

Thank you so much for your quick replies.

I understand that the living in France whilst my Non EU partner works in Geneva may prove difficult and therefore we most likely may just have to live in Switzerland.

Therefore I wanted to ask if you had any advice on the following.

Can we both arrive in the country and then apply for permits showing "sufficient financial resources"?

Does anyone know what those "sufficient financial resources" are?

If we move there and I find a part time job will this suffice in allowing my partner to work?
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Old 04.05.2017, 06:46
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Re: Non EU Work Status

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Roegner & Medea,

Thank you so much for your quick replies.

I understand that the living in France whilst my Non EU partner works in Geneva may prove difficult and therefore we most likely may just have to live in Switzerland.

Therefore I wanted to ask if you had any advice on the following.

Can we both arrive in the country and then apply for permits showing "sufficient financial resources"?

Does anyone know what those "sufficient financial resources" are?

If we move there and I find a part time job will this suffice in allowing my partner to work?
YOU can come here and search for a job for 3 months and then apply for a job searcher L permit, your non EU partner cannot.

A part time job will still have financial requirements if you want your partner to come here.

Amount? Something like CHF 100 per day per person.

Again, this will only work if you have a B or a C permit, whereby it still needs to be approved if you have a B permit.

You are holding a residence permit (permit B)
The cantonal authorities may approve your application for family reunification, provided you meet the conditions of the Foreign Nationals Act (Art. 44).

Please contact your cantonal migration authority for more information.
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Old 04.05.2017, 08:33
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Re: Non EU Work Status

Sorry roegner, but wrong. An EU national can bring dependents with them straightaway and providing they have sufficient funds, don't need to have a job either. It's the residency which counts. However as EU nationals aren't issued with a permit for the first 3 months, it's doubtful any dependents would be as well. Which means you're back in the non-EU hiring criteria rule as far as your spouse getting a job here. Only when you've been here for 3 months and then apply for the job seekers permit or you get a job yourself would your spouse get a permit as well I think. The other problem is the need for the non-EU spouse to have a Type D visa to enter Switzerland for more than 90 days. Usually this is tied to an application for a family reunification permit, but I assume you could get one without this - check with the Swiss embassy/consulate that covers your area of America.

The general figure to work to is CHF100 per day and say half that again for a second person, given that things lke rent, etc, will be shared. But again, check with the relevant cantonal migration office of the canton you want to move to to be sure. As living costs vary you may find canton Zurich wants a higher figure than canton Neuchatel for example.

How it would work if your spouse finds a job and you don't, I don't know as you would be the main permit holder, i.e. his permit depends on you having one. The rules have recently been changed so that EU nationals can only be here for a maximum of 6 months to job hunt (3 months without a permit and 3 months with an L). What the situation would be if your husband is working, but you're not when the 6 months ends I have no idea.
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Old 04.05.2017, 09:54
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Re: Non EU Work Status

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Sorry roegner, but wrong. An EU national can bring dependents with them straightaway and providing they have sufficient funds, don't need to have a job either.


OK, thanks, I stand corrected!
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Old 05.05.2017, 01:16
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Re: Non EU Work Status

Guys this is all super helpful, thank you so much!
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Old 06.05.2017, 19:19
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Re: Non EU Work Status

Thank you for asking this question! I was just searching for this same answer, actually. My husband has a UK and US passport (he was born in the US but has dual citizenship through his British father), and we're getting ready to move to Lausanne to start his postdoctoral position this summer. He will make an ok salary, but with two kids I will need to work as well, so I'm glad to know I should be allowed to work once he starts.

I'm fairly new to Swiss rules, but from what I've read, she would not be able to work in Switzerland if you lived in France (like the others said).

Good luck!
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Old 07.05.2017, 05:05
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Re: Non EU Work Status

Hi jessicakate,

thanks for the message, let me know how it goes!
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Old 10.05.2017, 06:26
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Re: Non EU Work Status

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An EU national can bring dependents with them straightaway and providing they have sufficient funds, don't need to have a job either. It's the residency which counts. However as EU nationals aren't issued with a permit for the first 3 months, it's doubtful any dependents would be as well. Which means you're back in the non-EU hiring criteria rule as far as your spouse getting a job here. Only when you've been here for 3 months and then apply for the job seekers permit or you get a job yourself would your spouse get a permit as well I think. The other problem is the need for the non-EU spouse to have a Type D visa to enter Switzerland for more than 90 days. Usually this is tied to an application for a family reunification permit, but I assume you could get one without this - check with the Swiss embassy/consulate that covers your area of America.
So, you're saying a non-EU spouse that has an EU spouse can come without a visa and apply for a working visa in Switzerland? I checked with my nearest Swiss consulate, and they confused me more on some things. haha My husband was offered a postdoc in Lausanne (and signed the contract), but I will need to work as well to pay the bills (we have 1 kid coming and an older one staying in the US). Hubby has a UK passport as well as a US one, the kids and I only have US passports.

To apply for a D visa, the consulate said, "Please note that you have to be physically present at your place of residence within our jurisdiction in order to apply for this visa. You cannot apply from abroad. Personal appearance can be ordered at any time during the visa process."

Does "our jurisdiction" mean their office in San Francisco, or in Vaud? Do I have to apply for the visa before we go? Some places I'm reading say I have to do it in the US and others say I can apply at the local canton after we get there. Even the lady that is doing my husband's employment paperwork is not sure.

And, the D visa will allow me to work, but not run my own business, correct? (I've had a photography business in the US for over 10 years)

Thank you!
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Old 10.05.2017, 09:00
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Re: Non EU Work Status

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So, you're saying a non-EU spouse that has an EU spouse can come without a visa and apply for a working visa in Switzerland? I checked with my nearest Swiss consulate, and they confused me more on some things. haha My husband was offered a postdoc in Lausanne (and signed the contract), but I will need to work as well to pay the bills (we have 1 kid coming and an older one staying in the US). Hubby has a UK passport as well as a US one, the kids and I only have US passports.

To apply for a D visa, the consulate said, "Please note that you have to be physically present at your place of residence within our jurisdiction in order to apply for this visa. You cannot apply from abroad. Personal appearance can be ordered at any time during the visa process."

Does "our jurisdiction" mean their office in San Francisco, or in Vaud? Do I have to apply for the visa before we go? Some places I'm reading say I have to do it in the US and others say I can apply at the local canton after we get there. Even the lady that is doing my husband's employment paperwork is not sure.

And, the D visa will allow me to work, but not run my own business, correct? (I've had a photography business in the US for over 10 years)

Thank you!
No, I'm not saying that at all. You're confusing a visa with a PERMIT. It's slightly different in your case as your husband already has a job here. Your husband has to apply for family reunification PERMITS for you both asap, if he hasn't already done so. At the same time you and the child have to apply for Type D entry visas which will allow you to enter Switzerland long term, i.e. for more than the 90 day tourist limit. Both documents are sent to the Swiss embassy in San Francisco for processing. If the family reunification permits are approved by the Swiss goverment then you'll be asked to bring/send your passports to the Swiss embassy in San Francisco to have the visas stamped in your passport. You'll then have a set period of time when you can use the visas to enter Switzerland. That is all the visas do for you, allow you to enter Switzerland. Once here you then go to the cantonal migration office to start the process of getting your pre-approved PERMITS issued to you. Once you have that you should be able to start work. It's the PERMIT that allows you to live and work here, not the visa.

It's all quite clear in the link provided earlier:

"Upon arrival in Switzerland, family members must present the following documents:
•Valid ID card or passport,
Visa if applicable (citizens of non-EU-27/EFTA countries who require a visa under the entry regulations),
•Certificate issued by the authorities in the country of origin proving that the person is related to you,
•Anyone who will be dependent on you must present a letter issued by the authorities of the country of origin confirming that you will pay their living expenses."

You need a visa to enter Switzerland long term.

And yes, some people do turn up without doing the above process and yes some have been lucky that the cantonal migration office has processed the permit and visa application here. But this depends entirely on the canton and other people have been told to return back to their home country to apply and wait for the visa there or to at least go to another country outside of Switzerland to apply and wait there until the visa is approved.

The process takes several weeks so get the applications in asap.

You can be self-employed if you want, but may be difficult if you don't speak a Swiss language.
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Old 10.05.2017, 21:14
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Re: Non EU Work Status

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You're confusing a visa with a PERMIT....It's the PERMIT that allows you to live and work here, not the visa.
I think that was the piece I was missing and getting confused by. Now it makes sense what I need to do here before we go, and what is required once we get there. Thanks so much for clearing that up!
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Old 10.05.2017, 21:19
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Re: Non EU Work Status

Yeah, it gets confusing as US uses the word visa to mean permit too, while in Europe the two words mean different things - visa to enter the country, permit to live/work there.
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Old 10.05.2017, 21:26
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Re: Non EU Work Status

Someday all of this will be second nature to me and I'll be able to help out the newbies. Your patience with me will not be in vain. :P
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Old 11.05.2017, 02:38
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Re: Non EU Work Status

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You can be self-employed if you want, but may be difficult if you don't speak a Swiss language.
FYI, this is what I found about self-employment on a Swiss Embassy document (closed the link but I have the pdf):

"As a rule, self-employment is only possible after a permanent residence permit (C-permit) has been obtained."

Also, this site says the same thing: http://www.expatica.com/ch/visas-and...ts_102462.html

"Usually, you can only work in Switzerland in a self-employment capacity if you hold a settlement permit. This means you need to have already lived in Switzerland for five years or in some cases, 10 years."

Not sure if it's different for me since my husband is an EU citizen, though, and I haven't read anything that gets that specific yet.
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Old 11.05.2017, 08:54
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Re: Non EU Work Status

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FYI, this is what I found about self-employment on a Swiss Embassy document (closed the link but I have the pdf):

"As a rule, self-employment is only possible after a permanent residence permit (C-permit) has been obtained."

Also, this site says the same thing: http://www.expatica.com/ch/visas-and...ts_102462.html

"Usually, you can only work in Switzerland in a self-employment capacity if you hold a settlement permit. This means you need to have already lived in Switzerland for five years or in some cases, 10 years."

Not sure if it's different for me since my husband is an EU citizen, though, and I haven't read anything that gets that specific yet.
Wrong info. That is referring to non-EU nationals who are not dependents, but applying in their own right for a permit. It's quite clear that dependents of EU nationals have the right to work and/or be self-employed if they want.

"Access to the labour market
Regardless of their nationality, persons who come to Switzerland by virtue of family reunification have the right to seek employment anywhere in Switzerland and in the branch of their choice. They may also work in a self-employed capacity."

https://www.sem.admin.ch/content/dam...nnachzug-e.pdf

"Art. 46 Employment of spouses and children

The spouse and children of a Swiss national or of a person with a permanent residence permit or a residence permit (Art. 42-44) may work on a salaried or self-employed basis anywhere in Switzerland."

https://www.admin.ch/opc/en/classifi...232/index.html

Permanent residence permit is C, residence permit is B.

If you want to be self-employed you'll need to present your business plan to the cantonal migration office, along with proof that you have sufficient funds to keep the business running while it gets established. If they're happy you can be self-employed, if they're not you can't.

https://www.kmu.admin.ch/kmu/en/home...efta-area.html

This is the difference between a C permit holder and a B permit holder. The C permit holder doesn't have to get permission to be self-employed, the B permit holder does.
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