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Old 18.05.2021, 17:15
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Non-EU work permit possibility

Hello all,
I am an Indian citizen currently in the USA and my company has offered to move me to their Switzerland branch office in geneva.
I have roughly 2.5-3 years of work experience and a Master's degree.
My HR has sent the docs to the immigration advisors but the HR has raised a concern saying I don't have enough experience to get the Visa.
Intra-company transfer not an option according to HR due to company policy.
I have been in this company for almost 8 months and my field of expertise is IT ( specifically Networking - routers, switches, firewalls, etc..)
Has anyone been in a similar situation before and got approved?
How long do you think will the process take?
Thanks in advance
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Old 18.05.2021, 21:01
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Re: Non-EU work permit possibility

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I am an Indian citizen currently in the USA and my company has offered to move me to their Switzerland branch office in geneva.
I have roughly 2.5-3 years of work experience and a Master's degree.
[...]
Has anyone been in a similar situation before and got approved?
How long do you think will the process take?
I don't know about Geneva but Zurich has a non-official rule that non-EU hires need to have at least 3 years of full time job experience in the field they're hired into. It's not set in stone though, I know people who got through with just 1.5-2 years when the hiring manager advocated for them.
As to how long there's really no telling. The official timelines are 8-12 weeks but Geneva immigration bureaucracy is known to be very slow.

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Intra-company transfer not an option according to HR due to company policy.
The company policy part sounds a bit shady but transfer wouldn't be an option anyway. International intra-company transfer doesn't work in Switzerland like it does in the US where you can work overseas for a year and get an L1 visa. In Switzerland intra-company transfer is only allowed for top management positions, all other "transfers" need to go through the usual route of advertising an open position in CH and proving there were no Swiss/EU nationals to fill it.
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Old 19.05.2021, 09:50
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Re: Non-EU work permit possibility

Thanks for the quick reply.
Currently company offered me contract for 1 year but willing to extend it if it helps with the visa.
Will long term contract be better?
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Old 19.05.2021, 10:00
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Re: Non-EU work permit possibility

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Thanks for the quick reply.
Currently company offered me contract for 1 year but willing to extend it if it helps with the visa.
Will long term contract be better?
Not necessarily, though it could possibly help. But non-EU permits are renewable every year and the company has to show they haven't managed to find someone Swiss/EU who could do the job.

Also be warned that should you get the job, unless you give up your Green Card (I assume that's what you have) when you leave the States, you'll still be subject to US taxation obligations and would need to file US tax returns, fill in FBAR forms for your foreign, i.e. outside of US, bank accounts and could end up owing the US tax on top of your Swiss ones.
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Old 19.05.2021, 12:50
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Re: Non-EU work permit possibility

one other thing, coming from the US myself (but US citizen) - is that they must post the job and "prove" that no one else is the EU can do the job. They have to leave the role posted for I think 8 weeks, then justify to the govt. why these other EU applicants aren't sufficient. (I don't have a source for the posting piece, but that was my experience)

This is where the job requirements and posting are important. If the posting is just for a network engineer - then you can get one of those anywhere. Your company would need to tailor it to your specific experience - something that couldn't be filled from the EU. The employer will have to say why they need YOU and not someone else with the same skills in the EU.

A good HR team or recruiter in CH knows the tricks to make this work -but even some guys in my company were denied becasue the job posting and requirements were so generic that they couldn't turn away the other applicants.
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Old 19.05.2021, 16:31
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Re: Non-EU work permit possibility

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one other thing, coming from the US myself (but US citizen) - is that they must post the job and "prove" that no one else is the EU can do the job. They have to leave the role posted for I think 8 weeks, then justify to the govt. why these other EU applicants aren't sufficient. (I don't have a source for the posting piece, but that was my experience)
From what I've gathered non-EU and Croatia have the same requirements, and my SO is waiting for it, company said 30 days for job ad and then 2 weeks to get the approval from the immigration or whoever gives it.
In ideal case of course (this 2 weeks part).

Also, part of proving can be showing how many people applied and at which step of the interview process they failed, especially if company keeps the ad running there all the time.

But yes, I think mostly they start the ad after you accept the offer, and then they do the paperwork why it's you they need. No clue how much it cost to have an ad wherever it's needed. Or maybe they can combine common ad places + 30 days of those special ones. Because they need to show they made an effort to employ locally, and I know for sure that in my SO case, there were bunch of candidates (said by recruiter), and one even left glassdoor review for that process (so some kind of proof)

Anyhow, yes, company needs to do it properly. There are agents who can help with that if dealing with Amts is too difficult to comprehend. In short, I don't think it's a real obstacle if you invest any effort in doing it properly. But yes, it takes effort and paperwork in order.

I did hear 8 weeks but for the whole procedure, not the ad itself.
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