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Old 06.04.2021, 23:35
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US citizen, B Permit, Paid PhD in St. Gallen

Curious if there is any chance to switch from the "restricted B" to the non-restricted B to count for permit C? Would Canton SG allow this? If so, what are the steps?

Thanks a lot!
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  #2  
Old 06.04.2021, 23:38
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Re: US citizen, B Permit, Paid PhD in St. Gallen

Once you graduate and find a job it's possible. It's not possible as a student or postdoc. Years on student B count towards C retroactively if you hold a B permit for 2 years after graduation.
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Old 06.04.2021, 23:41
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Re: US citizen, B Permit, Paid PhD in St. Gallen

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Once you graduate and find a job it's possible. It's not possible as a student or postdoc. Years on student B count towards C retroactively if you hold a B permit for 2 years after graduation.
Thanks! So there is no way for me to persuade the Canton to change it? I read somewhere (sorry have so many threads open I can't find it) that someone managed to change it...
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Old 06.04.2021, 23:45
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Re: US citizen, B Permit, Paid PhD in St. Gallen

No. Definitely not as a non-EU citizen. Your permit is non quota. There is 0 chance they will give you a quota permit as a student.

edit: groan all you like, your profile says you are Canadian not American, so not sure which to believe, either way. I came here almost 7 years ago from Canada, after finishing my PhD in Canada. I started in a postdoc, which is also a student permit B, I have been working a full time job on an unlimited contract for 3 years now after finishing my postdoc, I am still on a student permit. I am just now hopefully finally going to be taken off a student permit, in two years I will be able to apply for my C if they finally give me a proper permit, I will have been here almost 9 years (Canadians can normally get a C after 5 years, and I also have all the VINTA qualifications to get a C in 5 years). I spent 7 years in Switzerland on a student B having never been a student here, trust me they do not take you off that permit if they can help it. I have tried.

Last edited by AndersonMD; 07.04.2021 at 02:03.
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Old 07.04.2021, 07:11
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Re: US citizen, B Permit, Paid PhD in St. Gallen

Let me add another perspective.

I am Canadian; Masters + PhD + Postdoc; 9+ years total in same canton and ...

nope they will not grant me a C Permit either.

I think there are a few thousand of us who have fallen through the cracks with this moronic system. There was an article 2 years ago about how the guy who made Digitec (a politician in St. Gallen) wanted to change the law to give us the chance to integrate in the system; but then Corona and political promises I guess.
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Old 07.04.2021, 09:08
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No. Definitely not as a non-EU citizen. Your permit is non quota. There is 0 chance they will give you a quota permit as a student.

edit: groan all you like, your profile says you are Canadian not American, so not sure which to believe, either way. I came here almost 7 years ago from Canada, after finishing my PhD in Canada. I started in a postdoc, which is also a student permit B, I have been working a full time job on an unlimited contract for 3 years now after finishing my postdoc, I am still on a student permit. I am just now hopefully finally going to be taken off a student permit, in two years I will be able to apply for my C if they finally give me a proper permit, I will have been here almost 9 years (Canadians can normally get a C after 5 years, and I also have all the VINTA qualifications to get a C in 5 years). I spent 7 years in Switzerland on a student B having never been a student here, trust me they do not take you off that permit if they can help it. I have tried.
My apologies - I thought the groan was literally meant as a "friendly groan", and didn't know it was a real "groan". Removed it .

I am personally Canadian, but my friend is American. I was interested in the question as well, and didn't see a difference if it is Canadian or American in the question. Thanks for the response!

Edit:
May I ask how you did your taxes while you were a paid student? Did your report income? I am very confused by this personally.

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Let me add another perspective.

I am Canadian; Masters + PhD + Postdoc; 9+ years total in same canton and ...

nope they will not grant me a C Permit either.

I think there are a few thousand of us who have fallen through the cracks with this moronic system. There was an article 2 years ago about how the guy who made Digitec (a politician in St. Gallen) wanted to change the law to give us the chance to integrate in the system; but then Corona and political promises I guess.
Darn..... Thanks for the info. Why would they advertise "5 years for US/Canada" if in reality there's no difference compared to the other countries.... Also curious how you did your taxes while a paid student....

Last edited by roegner; 07.04.2021 at 09:20. Reason: Merging consecutive posts
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Old 07.04.2021, 09:23
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Re: US citizen, B Permit, Paid PhD in St. Gallen

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Darn..... Thanks for the info. Why would they advertise "5 years for US/Canada" if in reality there's no difference compared to the other countries.... Also curious how you did your taxes while a paid student....
Because they are advertising for people not working in academia who could potentially get a C after 5 years.

Taxes are easy.

You are subject to witholding taxes, meaning that the income you receive in your bank account is your income after taxes. You don't need to file taxes in Switzerland or declare them as a PhD student making less than 120K. Honestly the easiest thing about living in Switzerland as a foreigner.

Note that if you have assets in Canada e.g. a house, then you do need to make a request to file taxes and as of this year it will now be granted.
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Old 07.04.2021, 09:30
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Re: US citizen, B Permit, Paid PhD in St. Gallen

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Because they are advertising for people not working in academia who could potentially get a C after 5 years.

Taxes are easy.

You are subject to witholding taxes, meaning that the income you receive in your bank account is your income after taxes. You don't need to file taxes in Switzerland or declare them as a PhD student making less than 120K. Honestly the easiest thing about living in Switzerland as a foreigner.

Note that if you have assets in Canada e.g. a house, then you do need to make a request to file taxes and as of this year it will now be granted.
Thanks! I more-so meant back in Canada. Since I already pay taxes in Switzerland, how do I file taxes back home in Canada?
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Old 07.04.2021, 09:46
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Re: US citizen, B Permit, Paid PhD in St. Gallen

I declared myself a non tax resident of Canada when filing my last tax return before moving to Switzerland. Then I didn't have to worry about Canadian taxes.

My wife made the mistake of declaring herself a student abroad, the only advantage that I am aware of is that you can keep your Canadian health care, but you can't use it in Switzerland anyways. When the tax person in Canada went over the taxes she had a very large Canadian tax bill, but they allowed her to retroactively declare herself a non-tax resident from when she left so she didn't have to pay it.

Note, we have no assets in Canada, only student debt. If you have assets or income from assets in Canada you still have to do taxes there and it becomes more complicated.
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Old 07.04.2021, 10:30
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Re: US citizen, B Permit, Paid PhD in St. Gallen

Ah in Canada, declare yourself as a non-tax resident and a student.
That will take care of most things.

Note that if the CRA wants to see that you filed taxes in Switzerland (for instance, you become a postdoc and are not a student anymore), they will not accept that you pay withholding tax even if you show them your "withholding tax declaration". It is a PITA and you can be basically double taxed on your swiss salary, despite having paid it.
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Old 07.04.2021, 11:40
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Re: US citizen, B Permit, Paid PhD in St. Gallen

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Ah in Canada, declare yourself as a non-tax resident and a student.
That will take care of most things.

Note that if the CRA wants to see that you filed taxes in Switzerland (for instance, you become a postdoc and are not a student anymore), they will not accept that you pay withholding tax even if you show them your "withholding tax declaration". It is a PITA and you can be basically double taxed on your swiss salary, despite having paid it.
Thanks! But what? That is ridiculous... How does one get around that? Or is there no way?
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Old 07.04.2021, 17:36
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Re: US citizen, B Permit, Paid PhD in St. Gallen

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Thanks! But what? That is ridiculous... How does one get around that? Or is there no way?
I'm not qualified to give that advice — so, lawyers.
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