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Old 04.08.2010, 08:58
2x2 2x2 is offline
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Family regroupment -- processing time and other

Hello!
Being way too optimistic about the visa processing time, I got myself into a pickle. I'm in the US and I need to get a visa to join my spouse in Switzerland, but due to other constraints, I have to leave the US in October (about 10 weeks from now, max). The Swiss consulate says the processing time is at least 8-10 weeks, so it seems that there is a good chance I won't make it. What is the actual average waiting time? Does anybody here have a recent experience?
In case I don't get the family regroupment visa in time, is it legal to enter Switzerland on a visitor visa? I wonder if it would be possible to enter as a visitor and then ask for the proper family regroupment visa at another consulate in Europe. Thank you in advance for any information!
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Old 04.08.2010, 09:18
Nev
 
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Re: Family regroupment -- processing time and other

I applied for one about 4 years ago and it took four months and we're EU. That was in Vaud. It all depends on which canton you're applying to but family regroupment don't seem to jump the queue. Vaud and Zurich seem to take longer because of the volume they have to deal with. I'll leave the rest of your questions to others.
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Old 04.08.2010, 09:27
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Re: Family regroupment -- processing time and other

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Hello!
Being way too optimistic about the visa processing time, I got myself into a pickle. I'm in the US and I need to get a visa to join my spouse in Switzerland, but due to other constraints, I have to leave the US in October (about 10 weeks from now, max). The Swiss consulate says the processing time is at least 8-10 weeks, so it seems that there is a good chance I won't make it. What is the actual average waiting time? Does anybody here have a recent experience?
In case I don't get the family regroupment visa in time, is it legal to enter Switzerland on a visitor visa? I wonder if it would be possible to enter as a visitor and then ask for the proper family regroupment visa at another consulate in Europe. Thank you in advance for any information!

Good luck! I am American and my husband is Swiss, and I applied for my visa at the beginning of May. At that point we had already paid for plane tickets for me to come out here in July, so I asked the lady at the consulate if there would be a problem with that if I did not have the visa by then. She said she'd never heard of anyone having a problem coming over (using their regular US passport) and that they could go ahead and send the information to another consulate in Europe and I could go there to pick it up.

You do have to apply for it at your country of origin but you should be able to pick it up anywhere outside of Switzerland. I still have not gotten mine (3 months later! Turns out that the cantonal authorities here [Thurgau] needed additional information from my husband but we had no idea until we contacted them to see what the holdup was) but had no problems flying over here (used Berlin air and did not have a return flight).

As someone else said the waiting time will vary depending on what canton you apply to. Given the delays that I have had getting mine, I suggest contacting the canton you're going to live in and asking if they will need any additional information beyond what you normally give for the family regroupment application (in my case my husband had to submit papers showing he could financially support me here).

Good luck!
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Old 04.08.2010, 10:09
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Re: Family regroupment -- processing time and other

First of all, you are able to come to Switzerland for up to 3 months while you are waiting to hear back from the swiss government . . . The officials know when you are entering and exiting the country, and as long as you are within your 3 month stint, you are in the clear.

Also, Definitely contact the canton regarding what other info might need to be submitted!!

My partner and I are from the US, and while he was able to travel over here with a work visa, I entered the country with only my passport in tow. I was, however, able to obtain a family regroupment visa.. which only took about 2 months . . . . . we are in Aargau canton though . . where the volume of requests is significantly lower than that in Zurich and Vaud......

Also, in these situations, I am a firm believer in the statement -- the squeaky wheel gets the oil.....

We first heard back from the canton after about 1 month (with a little extra follow up on our part) but not with a definitive answer.... Instead we were asked to provide more documentation/proof of our relationship ... so as to establish that we weren't filing for paperwork just to get me into the country or something....

After a short stretch of time, we compiled BOAT LOADS of documentation for the migration office . . . Photos, letters from family members, a timeline of our history, along with a multi-page letter explaining why it would be detrimental to keep us apart from one another.........

I must admit that I also made several phone calls during the waiting period to simply check on the status. To be honest, it was rather time consuming for me (with all the minutes of waiting on hold added up...) however I honestly believe that the consistent effort touching base with swiss officials might have sped the process up a little bit.... on two different occasions (at two different offices I had been in contact with) the person I was speaking to remembered me and our case and were far more friendly and personable in speaking with me once they recognized us/our story.

My piece of advice . . . . . If you Truly want to be considered for a family regroupment visa, and don't want to wait up to 6 months..... Don't just apply.... also Show them that you really want to come back & reunite with your partner as soon as possible!! (one other thing to keep in mind . . . it also didn't hurt our case having written our second letter to the migration office in german/swiss german!)

I wish you the very best of luck!!!
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Old 05.08.2010, 05:33
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Re: Family regroupment -- processing time and other

Thanks for your answers! This is not very encouraging. I was hoping for less than 8 weeks, but it looks like it could take much longer. Anybody here with recent experience in Vaud?
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Old 05.08.2010, 09:48
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Re: Family regroupment -- processing time and other

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Anybody here with recent experience in Vaud?
It doesn't change much. Vaud routinely has a huge amount of applications to process. I have a C permit but I just renewed a B permit for one of my kids. Applied at the end of March and received the new permit a week ago - so just over 4 months. And that was just for an EU renewal. You might be lucky and get it quicker. You just have to sit it out I'm afraid.
Good luck.
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Old 12.11.2010, 11:09
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Re: Family regroupment -- processing time and other

does anybody know if it's possible to apply for the spouse visa on a tourist visa in Switzerland after getting married in switzerland to a swiss? The consulate told me that we could take the risk, but there is a chance they will make me go back to the states and wait up to 4 months for the visa, even though we are married. Has anyone experienced this absurdity?
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Old 12.11.2010, 11:17
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Re: Family regroupment -- processing time and other

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does anybody know if it's possible to apply for the spouse visa on a tourist visa in Switzerland after getting married in switzerland to a swiss?
Not sure I understand. Do you mean that you have a current tourist visa and whilst on that visa you got married here to a Swiss and now you want to apply for a spouse (family unification) visa?
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