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Old 15.08.2021, 21:40
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Max time outside Switzerland with B permit

Hi folks. I read somewhere taht the maximum time outside Switzerland for B permit holders is 180 days within a year. Is that within calendar year or in the last year.
Here is my particular case. Within the last year, I spent 200 days outside the country (70 days from September-December 2020 and 130 days in 2021). All the time I was outside Schengen area.

Under the assumption that I overstayed outside the country, how would they catch me? I came back to Switzerland 3 days ago and they didn't say anything at the passport checking. Is it possible that I just got away with it?

I don't plan to leave Switzerland in the next 6 months so is it possible that they notice that in 2022 that I broke this rule now?
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Old 15.08.2021, 22:46
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Re: Max time outside Switzerland with B permit

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Is it possible that I just got away with it?
Yes it is. There's no centralized database of non-EU citizens entering/leaving the Schengen area yet, only the national records which are not broadly shared between member states.

Also, there's no such thing as a "maximum amount of time you're allowed to spend outside CH" in the law. The law states two things:
  • Your "center of life" must remain in Switzerland for your permit to remain valid. Whatever that means is up to the court to decide if the authorities start
    suspecting that it's not the case anymore.
  • If you're out of the country for more than 6 months continuously your permit is toast. That's not tracked automatically as far as I know but if it comes up later you might be in trouble. E.g. the application for citizenship may require you to list longer absences from CH during your stay here and if you lie there the citizenship can be revoked if they find out.

So if you haven't been out of CH for more than 6 months at a time without returning, you should be fine. If the authorities ever ask they'll probably be lenient because of the COVID situation.
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Old 17.08.2021, 21:02
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Re: Max time outside Switzerland with B permit

Thank you for the reply.

I never left the country for more than 3 months per trip. My trips were like this:
- 2 months from September - November 2020
- almost 3 months from December 2020 - February 2021
- 1 month in May 2021
- 1 month in July 2021

I always traveled from the Airport and never had any problem.

Now I should make one more 3 weeks trip probably in a few days but I am afraid if I am breaking any rule. I read here that they say it is 6 months but they are not clear if it is 6 uninterrupted months or 6 months per year. Also, if it is per year, is it during the calendar year or in the last 365 days.

I wonder how would they catch me, would that happen at the airport when I come back to Switzerland or they would notice it when I have to extend my permit.

Since the Schengen states don't share the database, would it make sense to travel to Germany by train and then travel from there by plane so I avoid the passport checking here in Switzerland.
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Old 17.08.2021, 21:06
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Re: Max time outside Switzerland with B permit

Also, can someone point to the actual law stating this clearly?
What I could find is just this PDF where on page 102 it says that it is 6 months without saying if it should be uninterrupted or in total during the year. https://www.sem.admin.ch/dam/sem/de/...rgebnissed.pdf
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Old 17.08.2021, 21:08
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Re: Max time outside Switzerland with B permit

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Also, can someone point to the actual law stating this clearly?
What I could find is just this PDF where on page 102 it says that it is 6 months without saying if it should be uninterrupted or in total during the year. https://www.sem.admin.ch/dam/sem/de/...rgebnissed.pdf
Sure, it's Art. 61.2 of AIG.
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Old 17.08.2021, 21:49
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Re: Max time outside Switzerland with B permit

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Since the Schengen states don't share the database,...
U,,. that is the WHOLE POINT of Schengen.

Stop being STUPID!

Tom
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Old 18.08.2021, 17:23
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Re: Max time outside Switzerland with B permit

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U,,. that is the WHOLE POINT of Schengen.

Stop being STUPID!

Tom
I agree, makes sense.
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Old 18.08.2021, 17:46
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Re: Max time outside Switzerland with B permit

I did the exact math and figured out that I was outside Switzerland for 177 days in the last 12 months period.
After that, I called the migration office to ask and they told me it is 6 months in total and better not to play with that. I asked if I can travel for one more month and for that I could ask for permission but it would be very unlikely they to approve it. It should be some extremely important reason in order to get approved. The office lady told me it is better not to play with it, otherwise, the permit can be revoked.
She said they don't check that when they renew the permit, but it may happen that the police notice it when you come back and then they can inform the migration office about that. Then the migration office would start asking you why you were outside for that long, and in most cases, they would revoke your permit.
Hope this info helps someone.
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