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Old 04.11.2010, 19:08
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Moving to CH to live with Same-Sex Partner - COMPLICATED

First off, I'd like to say I've spent the past 6 hours delving through this forum and haven't come across my exact situation - I found some similarities but nothing quite as messed up as my current situation. I'm very active on another forum and there's nothing more irritating than newbs who ask questions that have been answered 1000s of times. If I missed a thread and someone wants to (politely ) point me in the right direction and have mods nuke this, please feel free.

Sooo. I worked until June for the Canadian arm of a US Fortune 500 company in a highly specialized area of television production/support. In that capacity I had a relationship with a broadcaster here in Switzerland. Lets call me vendor support for simplicity.

In June I was laid off due to downsizing - not a performance issue - and was immediately contacted by the company to finish the job I started in Switzerland. I have been here off and on in this capacity since May. I do not (from what this companys very highly paid lawyers have determined) need a permit as I am providing temporary support for a Canadian product, being paid by a Canadian company into a Canadian account.

Since, I have met someone I have become quite close to. Its also worth noting I have planned to "hop the pond" for well over a year now, its just been a matter of when and where. I'm not making a rash love decision - I want to be here regardless of romance. To further complicate matters, he's doing an internship in Geneva (he's a Swiss citizen) but lives in Gaillard, on the French side of the border. We've been together 4 months now. We're not talking about marriage or anything - but things are going really, really well. I think this has legs. We are a same-sex couple, FWIW.

I'm now an "independent contractor" of sorts, and desire to continue in this freelance advisory/project management capacity throughout Europe if possible. Being able to serve drinks or pick up a few camera gigs on the side to keep the cash flowing would be my ultimate goal.

From what I've read, the easiest option would be to bring the boy to Canada for a few days and marry him. But we're not there yet - I'd be a freak for suggesting it after only four months. Ideally I'd love to find another way and come in on my own steam.

Sorry for the novel, but as you can see my situation is far from average. Regardless of any response from the masses let me say I'm so glad I found this forum - I really found myself wandering around in the dark between EU/CH websites, Canton websites, and other forums with 1 post per 3 months.

Cheers.

-Adam
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Old 04.11.2010, 19:49
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Re: Moving to CH to live with Same-Sex Partner - COMPLICATED

My limited understanding is that even a straight couple has essentially nothing going for them until they are married, or are at least willing to apply for a fiancé visa. So in some sense, I don't see how your situation is uncommon or complicated.

Your options are the same as everybody else's. A company can sponsor your permit, you can apply for and be accepted to an academic program, etc. Under the circumstances, you might also want to check what the equivalent processes are in France.

This probably isn't what you wanted to hear, but I hope it helps and I wish you luck.
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Old 05.11.2010, 06:47
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Re: Moving to CH to live with Same-Sex Partner - COMPLICATED

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My limited understanding is that even a straight couple has essentially nothing going for them until they are married, or are at least willing to apply for a fiancé visa.
While same sex couples do not have such restrictions.

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So in some sense, I don't see how your situation is uncommon or complicated.
It's not, but not for the reason you state.

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Your options are the same as everybody else's. A company can sponsor your permit, you can apply for and be accepted to an academic program, etc. Under the circumstances, you might also want to check what the equivalent processes are in France.
Well, no. There is also the option of moving to Switzerland to live with the partner.

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I do not (from what this companys very highly paid lawyers have determined) need a permit as I am providing temporary support for a Canadian product, being paid by a Canadian company into a Canadian account.


That's the trouble with highly paid lawyers - they generally get it wrong. Get this in writing and make sure they quote the relevant law. Personally, I suspect you are walking a visa tight rope and if you fall off you can kiss your move to Switzerland goodbye .

There are two ways in which you can be in Switzerland in the manner described. Either you have, as a minimum, a business visa or a work visa.

In the business visa situation, you are not allowed to carry on professional activities other than meetings but this is often flouted by companies esp when the visits are relatively short.

In the work visa situation, the situation you describe as an independant contractor subcontracted into Switzerland, is specifically not allowed (check the work visa link).

Anyhoo, same-sex couples are actually better off than straight couples when looking to live together in Switzerland. Switzerland recognises same sex relationships and does not require you to be married while straight couples are usually expected to get married.

As you have a Swiss partner this should be relatively straightforward. Your partner should register the relationship with his local town hall. This will take a while so don't get too excited . Once the relationship is registered and the various forms and paperwork have been completed you will be able to move to Switzerland on a permanent basis.

One fly in the ointment is the length of the relationship - 4 months is not likely to be considered enough to be considered long enough and you may be better off waiting until at least a year is up. Get your partner to check that with the town hall.

Once in Switzerland you would be free to take up employment or register as self employed.
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Old 26.11.2010, 17:33
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Re: Moving to CH to live with Same-Sex Partner - COMPLICATED

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Anyhoo, same-sex couples are actually better off than straight couples when looking to live together in Switzerland. Switzerland recognises same sex relationships and does not require you to be married while straight couples are usually expected to get married.

As you have a Swiss partner this should be relatively straightforward. Your partner should register the relationship with his local town hall. This will take a while so don't get too excited . Once the relationship is registered and the various forms and paperwork have been completed you will be able to move to Switzerland on a permanent basis.

One fly in the ointment is the length of the relationship - 4 months is not likely to be considered enough to be considered long enough and you may be better off waiting until at least a year is up. Get your partner to check that with the town hall.

Once in Switzerland you would be free to take up employment or register as self employed.
Ok, this is quite helpful to know. I think anything that isn't called "marriage" might be easier to pull off What you describe is certainly more realistic. I'm confused by the following quote from a Geneva govnt site however:

Droit de cité et nationalité

Le partenariat enregistré reste sans effet sur le droit de cité.
En ce qui concerne l’acquisition de la nationalité suisse par le partenaire étranger, la loi ne prévoit pas la possibilité d’obtenir la naturalisation suisse de manière facilitée comme c’est le cas pour le conjoint étranger d’une personne suisse.


My french is pretty good, but I'm still not clear whether its saying there's nothing offered to foreign couples who choose "to couple" here, (in the same way a foreign spouse of a Swiss citizen would have) or whether this paragraph is saying expect to be able to live and work here but don't come asking for a passport.


I might take a walk down and see what I can find out in person but any insight would be helpful.
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Old 26.11.2010, 18:06
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Re: Moving to CH to live with Same-Sex Partner - COMPLICATED

While you are looking at your options, be sure you keep in mind the 3 month visitor rule within the Schengen countries (CH is part of the group). Your Canadian passport was stamped when you entered. If you overstay your time, you can potentially complicate (in a big way) any work or other visa requests. Do a bit of homework on this aspect so you do not mess things up before you get a strategy organized. This probably means going back to CAN from time to time.

Some things to look at on the work visa option: can the CH client hire you? Another CH client or company? What about setting up a company in Canada then open a CH branch? This last idea would mean that whatever you are doing has more weight than just you working in the business to keep yourself busy. It would have to have enough potential to hire employees and act as your European HQ. You could get some information on what is involved via the Vaud or Geneva government websites.

What about going back to school? Depends a bit on your interest/age/what is available etc.

Some thoughts.
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Old 26.11.2010, 18:28
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Re: Moving to CH to live with Same-Sex Partner - COMPLICATED

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Ok, this is quite helpful to know. I think anything that isn't called "marriage" might be easier to pull off What you describe is certainly more realistic. I'm confused by the following quote from a Geneva govnt site however:

Droit de cité et nationalité

Le partenariat enregistré reste sans effet sur le droit de cité.
En ce qui concerne l’acquisition de la nationalité suisse par le partenaire étranger, la loi ne prévoit pas la possibilité d’obtenir la naturalisation suisse de manière facilitée comme c’est le cas pour le conjoint étranger d’une personne suisse.


My french is pretty good, but I'm still not clear whether its saying there's nothing offered to foreign couples who choose "to couple" here, (in the same way a foreign spouse of a Swiss citizen would have) or whether this paragraph is saying expect to be able to live and work here but don't come asking for a passport.


I might take a walk down and see what I can find out in person but any insight would be helpful.
I dont' know where that quote comes from. I'm guess it's from some section about rights of same sex partner or unmarried partners(?).

It means that you have "civil rights" but you do not have the right to get citizenship via the "facilitated naturalization" process (the short road which those married to Swiss citizens get to take). You have to go through the long road, regular naturalization process.
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Old 07.12.2010, 14:21
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Re: Moving to CH to live with Same-Sex Partner - COMPLICATED

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While you are looking at your options, be sure you keep in mind the 3 month visitor rule within the Schengen countries (CH is part of the group). Your Canadian passport was stamped when you entered. If you overstay your time, you can potentially complicate (in a big way) any work or other visa requests. Do a bit of homework on this aspect so you do not mess things up before you get a strategy organized. This probably means going back to CAN from time to time.

Some things to look at on the work visa option: can the CH client hire you? Another CH client or company? What about setting up a company in Canada then open a CH branch? This last idea would mean that whatever you are doing has more weight than just you working in the business to keep yourself busy. It would have to have enough potential to hire employees and act as your European HQ. You could get some information on what is involved via the Vaud or Geneva government websites.

What about going back to school? Depends a bit on your interest/age/what is available etc.

Some thoughts.
I've been going back every month, two max. Technically I'm only in CH about 2-3 days a week, I cross the border to France. I haven't spent the night in Switzerland since September. I'm also out every 2 weeks or so to Amsterdam or Brussels etc. So I think my nose is pretty clean. I'm done with school and I'm not interested in employing anyone.

I'm working on getting a job in Geneva proper but can't count on this. There's about 5-6 people in the world with my exact skill set (product knowledge of a very rare/specific kind) and I'm the only one who speaks French so we'll milk that if required.

I need a plan B. In fact, I'd rather plan B. I can make more money that way and be more flexible.

I've just spent another 2 hrs searching and reading and I can't get an answer to the following question:

Can a Non-EU citizen get a permit for self-employment if they don't already have a permit of some sort and are not married to a Swiss citizen?

All my searches have turned up cases either of Non-EUs going this route after being employed, spouses being self-employed, or EU nationals becoming self employed. I have none of these 3.

I have 4 companies who would be willing to certify they can give me work (2 out of the UK but who need work done in CH, 2 right in CH). I have enough people banging down my door that I could book myself tomorrow through March, and it would keep coming.

Again - I can prove that my work is highly specialized (think repairman for a product with a sales number of about 100 units per year world-wide, but they cost $100k/each) and I can prove I have work.

Any thoughts on this?
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Old 07.12.2010, 15:35
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Re: Moving to CH to live with Same-Sex Partner - COMPLICATED

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Can a Non-EU citizen get a permit for self-employment if they don't already have a permit of some sort and are not married to a Swiss citizen?
No. This is highly unlikely. You can get a permit to join your partner and he must be responsible for you financially. But since you are together only 4 months this also probably unlikely. You best bet is to get a job with a permit. Stay there a couple years then request a self employment permit or a dependent permit if you guys are still together. (Although the fact that your BF lives in France could make this more or less complicated, I don't know).
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Old 07.12.2010, 15:57
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Re: Moving to CH to live with Same-Sex Partner - COMPLICATED

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I've been going back every month, two max. Technically I'm only in CH about 2-3 days a week, I cross the border to France. I haven't spent the night in Switzerland since September. I'm also out every 2 weeks or so to Amsterdam or Brussels etc. So I think my nose is pretty clean.
Unfortunately it doesn't sound as though it is. To stay on the right side of your tourist visa you must spend at least half the time (to be more exact: at least 90 days out of any 180-day period) outside of the Schengen area - not just outside of Switzerland. France, Belgium, the Netherlands, etc. are all in Schengen, so days you spend in any of those count just the same as days spent in Switzerland.
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Old 07.12.2010, 16:11
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Re: Moving to CH to live with Same-Sex Partner - COMPLICATED

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Unfortunately it doesn't sound as though it is. To stay on the right side of your tourist visa you must spend at least half the time (to be more exact: at least 90 days out of any 180-day period) outside of the Schengen area - not just outside of Switzerland. France, Belgium, the Netherlands, etc. are all in Schengen, so days you spend in any of those count just the same as days spent in Switzerland.
Yeah, something tells me I'm not coming back with him after our vacation to Canada at Christmas. I might apply for a long-stay tourist visa for France when I get back to at least stay on the up and up while I figure this out.

*sigh* <expletive>

One last thought: I'm pretty sure I can get my UK client to hire me on if necessary. I can get a UK working visa. Does this help me in any way, shape or form? No, right? I'd still be subject to the 90/180 rule and no working?
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Old 07.12.2010, 16:18
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Re: Moving to CH to live with Same-Sex Partner - COMPLICATED

Swissbob is right

For same sex couples, it is really not complicated as to be married before moving to Switzerland.

I am an example, just had to drop my papers at the respective Gemeinde Hause, and responded to all paper work that was needed, criminal records, marital checks and other questions or documents that would be asked.

Then we got resgistered, not actually a big wedding, no ring (lol), just that mutual committment and now I am waiting for my permit. No stress.

Wish you the best buddy.
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Old 07.12.2010, 16:18
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One last thought: I'm pretty sure I can get my UK client to hire me on if necessary. I can get a UK working visa. Does this help me in any way, shape or form? No, right? I'd still be subject to the 90/180 rule and no working?
Yes, that's right.
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Old 07.12.2010, 16:22
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Re: Moving to CH to live with Same-Sex Partner - COMPLICATED

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Swissbob is right

For same sex couples, it is really not complicated as to be married before moving to Switzerland.

I am an example, just had to drop my papers at the respective Gemeinde Hause, and responded to all paper work that was needed, criminal records, marital checks and other questions or documents that would be asked.

Then we got resgistered, not actually a big wedding, no ring (lol), just that mutual committment and now I am waiting for my permit. No stress.

Wish you the best buddy.
Did they ask you to "prove" the validity of the relationship in any way?

We don't have anything with both our names on it - I avoid that specifically as I figured it would get us in to trouble.
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Old 07.12.2010, 16:44
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Re: Moving to CH to live with Same-Sex Partner - COMPLICATED

The french quote I used above was sourced from the Geneva site, address:


Now my blood is running cold after going back there:

A partir du 1er janvier 2011, de l’article 98 alinéa 4 du code civil «les fiancés qui ne sont pas citoyens suisses doivent établir la légalité de leur séjour en Suisse au cours de la procédure préparatoire du mariage ou du partenariat». Cette disposition est également applicable à tous les dossiers en cours au 31 décembre 2010. A défaut de titre de séjour valable l’office de l’état civil se verra contraint de refuser de célébrer un mariage.

Does this mean what I think it means? That I need a visa/permit for CH in order to register the partnership after 1/1/11? ie: I'd need to find a job and get immigrated BEFORE registering the partnership?

Or would a valid tourist visa suffice? Any thoughts anyone?
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Old 07.12.2010, 16:45
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Re: Moving to CH to live with Same-Sex Partner - COMPLICATED

Sorry, forgot the link


Here
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Old 07.12.2010, 17:31
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Re: Moving to CH to live with Same-Sex Partner - COMPLICATED

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The french quote I used above was sourced from the Geneva site, address:


Now my blood is running cold after going back there:

A partir du 1er janvier 2011, de l’article 98 alinéa 4 du code civil «les fiancés qui ne sont pas citoyens suisses doivent établir la légalité de leur séjour en Suisse au cours de la procédure préparatoire du mariage ou du partenariat». Cette disposition est également applicable à tous les dossiers en cours au 31 décembre 2010. A défaut de titre de séjour valable l’office de l’état civil se verra contraint de refuser de célébrer un mariage.

Does this mean what I think it means? That I need a visa/permit for CH in order to register the partnership after 1/1/11? ie: I'd need to find a job and get immigrated BEFORE registering the partnership?

Or would a valid tourist visa suffice? Any thoughts anyone?
THe way I read it is that you have to be legally in the country. You can't be an illegal immigrant . So I would imagine that a valid tourist visa would suffice. However, they may request you get a fiance visa or something like that. YOu'll have to check the requirements.
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Old 08.12.2010, 09:54
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Re: Moving to CH to live with Same-Sex Partner - COMPLICATED

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THe way I read it is that you have to be legally in the country. You can't be an illegal immigrant . So I would imagine that a valid tourist visa would suffice. However, they may request you get a fiance visa or something like that. YOu'll have to check the requirements.
Thank you for this interpretation, and to everyone for all their help.

I have one last question of an urgent nature. I've just pulled out a calendar and done the math. No matter what the scenario I'm OK as of today, but we're getting close and I need help with the 90/180 rule.

If I count FORWARDS from my day of first entry into Schengen after an extended (more than 180 day) absence, I get 65/180 for this first block. I'd then be sitting at 40/180 for the second period.

However, if I count BACKWARDS from TODAY, I'm sitting at 81/90 for the LAST 180 days.

So I guess I need to know if the rule is 90 PER 180 days, resetting every 180 or whether its 90 out of ANY calculable 180 day period (ie: if you put the start/end of 180 anywhere it always has to equal 90/180).

If someone could help me out with this I can make the call of whether to stay until the 26th and leave until I get things sorted, or whether I need to hop the next flight to London for a week or two and stay with my sister then come and fetch the boy before we head back.

Thanks for your patience with me here - I'm just trying to stay legal and do this right.
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Old 08.12.2010, 17:29
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Re: Moving to CH to live with Same-Sex Partner - COMPLICATED

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Thank you for this interpretation, and to everyone for all their help.

I have one last question of an urgent nature. I've just pulled out a calendar and done the math. No matter what the scenario I'm OK as of today, but we're getting close and I need help with the 90/180 rule.

If I count FORWARDS from my day of first entry into Schengen after an extended (more than 180 day) absence, I get 65/180 for this first block. I'd then be sitting at 40/180 for the second period.

However, if I count BACKWARDS from TODAY, I'm sitting at 81/90 for the LAST 180 days.

So I guess I need to know if the rule is 90 PER 180 days, resetting every 180 or whether its 90 out of ANY calculable 180 day period (ie: if you put the start/end of 180 anywhere it always has to equal 90/180).

If someone could help me out with this I can make the call of whether to stay until the 26th and leave until I get things sorted, or whether I need to hop the next flight to London for a week or two and stay with my sister then come and fetch the boy before we head back.

Thanks for your patience with me here - I'm just trying to stay legal and do this right.
I don't understand your post and my head is starting to emit steam. Counting forward & backward? What?

Why are you counting backwards? You start counting forward from the first day you arrive forward.

PM me the dates and I'll see what I come up with.
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Old 09.12.2010, 11:22
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Re: Moving to CH to live with Same-Sex Partner - COMPLICATED

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So I guess I need to know if the rule is 90 PER 180 days, resetting every 180 or whether its 90 out of ANY calculable 180 day period (ie: if you put the start/end of 180 anywhere it always has to equal 90/180).
The latter: you can stay in the Schengen area for up to 90 days out of any 180-day period. If there is any 180-day period during which you have been in Schengen for 91+ of those days, you're out of line.
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Old 28.12.2010, 17:27
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Re: Moving to CH to live with Same-Sex Partner - COMPLICATED

Not sure if Swiss law has changed in the last 10 years, but I hope my story might inform you and anyone else in your situation:

I moved from the States here 10 years ago with my German partner who held a C Swiss residency permit. At the time, Switzerland already allowed the partner of a Swiss national or resident to obtain a non quota restricted B permit. This type of B permit allowed the holder to work for any company located within the issuing Province (Kanton), but did not allow for self-employment.

In order to get the B residency permit, we hired a lawyer to do all the paperwork. We did have to prove that we had been together for awhile, that I had sufficient funds in a Swiss bank (so I would not become a financial liability to the State, albeit my partner worked for the city of Zurich), that established people in Switzerland and the USA could testify to the validity of our relationship, and that we had a place to live in Switzerland. The veracity of my education credentials was verified to confirm that I had the ability of finding suitable employment in Switzerland. Again, these were the requirements that were asked of us and not necessarily what is required in every case.

After we got legally married (in Germany), I was afforded a B-EG/EFTA residency permit which allows me to be self-employed and to work in any Kanton in Switzerland.

I hope this bit of information helps you in deciding how to proceed with your future move into the land of Swiss. Best of luck.
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The times we live in...(Dog sex change) Guest General off-topic 4 13.10.2010 12:59
Moving from UK - same sex couple (unmarried) macessex79 Permits/visas/government 4 15.06.2009 17:46


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