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Old 31.08.2019, 21:51
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Non-EU wife and EU husband moving to Switzerland together

Hi all,

Apologies for the new thread, I've seen similar posts (if a bit old) but I'm still a bit confused and wanted to check if anyone had a similar experience and may have any tips that could help us?

I'm an EU citizen (Italy) currently living in the UK with my wife (non-EU citizen, she lives in the UK with me, though, thanks to a family permit for spouses of EU citizens). We're planning to relocate together to Switzerland over the next few months - I'm negotiating a Swiss job offer at the moment.

My question is: is there a way to move to Switzerland together, i.e., can she come to Switzerland at the same time as I move there?

I've seen that we have the right to "family reunification", but the issue is that from what I understand I'd need to move to Switzerland first, get my B permit issued (heard it can take around 8 weeks!) and once the permit is issued, she would need to apply for a D national visa (which can take up to 4 months or even more to be issued!) before joining me in Switzerland.

Furthermore, the moment I move to Switzerland with my job offer to get my permit B, she loses her right to live and work in the UK. This means that she would need to get all the way to Brazil (we're she's from) without a job just to apply for a visa..... If everything goes well, all this process would take 6 months, considering the time for getting my B permit and her D visa.

Has anyone had a similar experience or can provide any tips? Can she move to Switzerland with me and apply directly for a B permit at the same time I would?

Many thanks for your thoughts, guys!
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Old 01.09.2019, 10:17
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Re: Non-EU wife and EU husband moving to Switzerland together

Shouldn't be a problem if you can arrange accommodation ahead of time, even if it's only temporary for a few months. She can apply for a visa at the Swiss embassy in the UK based on family reunification and then you both just apply for the permits once you're here.

https://www.ch.ch/en/family-reunification-eu-efta/
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Old 01.09.2019, 16:26
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Re: Non-EU wife and EU husband moving to Switzerland together

Hi Medea, many thanks for your suggestion!

I'm afraid the documentation for my wife's national type D visa application includes a form where she needs to enter my B permit details, which may mean that I would have to get my B permit approved first and then she could apply for her D visa. (https://static.tlscontact.com/media/...207.1567256117)

I'm not sure though because as she does not require a visa to stay up to 90 days in Switzerland (for tourism) maybe she could enter with me and request the B permit once there? Or does she necessarily need to have a D visa prior to the B permit? This is all so confusing.

Also, I was taking a look at the link you sent us and it does say that family members must present some documents upon arrival in Switzerland which includes:

"Visa if applicable (citizens of non-EU/EFTA countries who require a visa under the entry regulations)"

And indeed she does not need a visa (for short stays under 90 days): https://www.sem.admin.ch/sem/en/home...rigkeit/b.html

As she does not require a visa to enter Switzerland would this mean she can enter with me without a national type D visa prior to apply for her B permit as long as she enter WITH me?

In another post I've seen the following:
"NO Residence Visa/Permission granted before arrival is required for a NON-EU spouse coming from a visa-exempt country or has access to Schengen Visa and you come entering WITH your spouse of EU citizenship. If you have a residence permit in another EU country you also do not need a Visa to enter WITH spouse."
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Old 01.09.2019, 16:57
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Re: Non-EU wife and EU husband moving to Switzerland together

Not really, she's still going to need the visa because that's what allows her to be here legally for more than the 90 day tourist limit. What she might be able to do is apply for the visa in the UK, but arrange to pick it up at the embassy in Germany or France for example. Also sometimes the cantonal migration office have even issued the necessary visa themselves once you arrive and apply for the permits. It really just depends on who you end up dealing with though, so I wouldn't rely on that last possibility.

Also UK/Ireland are not in the Schengen Area which is what the visa covers. If you were in Spain for example then she probably wouldn't need a visa since she's already in the Schengen Area. But in UK, she's not.

It's difficult to be sure since the rules on permits have been altered a bit recently, but I think you're making this a bit too hard for yourselves as well. After all, who's going to know you've moved to Switzerland and she hasn't yet? I would also check with the embassy to see if attaching a copy of your employment contract would be enough to cover the permit detail side on the application form.
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Old 01.09.2019, 17:56
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Re: Non-EU wife and EU husband moving to Switzerland together

Gone through exactly the same process. You need your B-permit. Once you have that, as an EU citizen you can apply for a B-permit to be granted to your wife as a family reunification. This means that your wife gets your same permit, allowing her to work in the country the same way as you - this, unfortunately, it's not a guaranteed fact, a canton may give only a residence permit without working rights.

I don't know where you are moving to, but don't believe the Swiss embassy in London when they say that it may take up to 8 weeks. They don't know this because it is a cantonal matter where the embassy has no input at all, all they do is send the documents to the cantonal office by diplomatic courier.

Again, this depends on the local population office, so I would give them a call and ask them directly how long it would take. In our case that was way over 6 months just to get an officer assigned to our file, and there's nothing guaranteed in terms of timing.

It was a very stressful period for us because of the uncertainty in how long this whole thing would be completed, as we initially believed this 8 week rule. So I would be pessimistic and consider a minimum of 7 to 8 months and then organise your life accordingly.
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Old 01.09.2019, 18:34
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Re: Non-EU wife and EU husband moving to Switzerland together

Hey guys, thanks so much for being so kind to give us some thoughts.

I was wondering if when I apply for my B permit when I arrive there I'll receive an application number, which could be used for my wife's national type D visa application then?

We were thinking about relocating to Canton Aargau, but I'll definitely ring up other nearby cantons as well to check if the expected processing times for the B permit may be quicker.

Tbh the idea of 6-8 months for a B permit, plus other 2-4 months for the type D visa is terrifying.

Thank you again, Dinivan and Medea.!
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Old 01.09.2019, 19:59
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Re: Non-EU wife and EU husband moving to Switzerland together

Yeah, it could be worth checking with the various cantons, they do seem to vary quite a lot in their processing times.

You'd have to ask the embassy if the processing application number would be enough. I've no idea I'm afraid.
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Old 04.07.2020, 11:28
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Re: Non-EU wife and EU husband moving to Switzerland together

Hi can you please share what solution you found at the end? Thank you
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