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Old 22.03.2011, 16:27
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missing deadline for driving licence change

hello. i have been very stupid and did not exchange my driving licence within a year of moving. the reasons were that i went to change licence, completed the forms, handed over the eye-test papers etc and then the lady said i would have to have a temporary licence as my licence said it was issued in 2004 however this was a re-issue as i lost my licence (another stupid incident) but she said that i could get a letter from my issuing authority showing i first passed in 1998 etc.

when i contacted them they were a nightmare and the person i was obliged to speak to was away for a while.

i had lost my job and was having a miserable time and as i had no car etc i never got round to sorting the problem out.

now however i want to buy a car and i obviously do not want to come a cropper with the friendly local constabulary but neither do i want to have to go through the nonsense of doing the swiss driving test.

do you think it is possible that if i get a lawyer to contact the authorities anonymously on my behalf, explain the situation ( i still have my docs from when i first tried to exchange) then i might get away with it. or of course any other ideas.

i know i have been an ass before i am reminded repeatedly....

thanks in advance.

b
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Old 22.03.2011, 16:33
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Re: missing deadline for driving licence change

In Zurich, they did not seem to care that I had missed the deadline by more than a year.

I would just take the appropriate paperwork and proceed as normal. If they question it, you might try to explain your circumstances.

Have a search on the forum, as I think there are others that have not been questioned when missing the deadline.

Good luck.
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Old 22.03.2011, 16:36
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Re: missing deadline for driving licence change

thank you - i can imagine however that Zurich is more rational than geneva! i will see what else i can find and see if i get any more advice - otherwise will just have to risk it!
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Old 22.03.2011, 16:50
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Re: missing deadline for driving licence change

Hi boulay, I changed mine almost four years after the deadline, all I had to do was prove that I had been driving regularly in that period but of course not in CH. I got proof from a friend saying that I regularly hired a car in germany AND uk for business. Good luck.
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Old 22.03.2011, 16:58
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Re: missing deadline for driving licence change

thank you. hopefully it will work.
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Old 22.03.2011, 16:59
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Re: missing deadline for driving licence change

gosh, i am still using my German license though i have been here for more than one year. but i am leaving in two months so let me keep my german license...
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Old 22.03.2011, 19:33
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Re: missing deadline for driving licence change

I know several persons who changed after the one year expiry in Geneva and it wasn't a problem. Just act a little dumb :-) and they will take pity... they may remind you about your gross error but they won't make you resit the test... Vaud are a little stricter I hear...
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Old 23.03.2011, 16:23
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Re: missing deadline for driving licence change

So you have a reason (requiring additional documentation from the foreign authorities) and proof you started your application within a year (dated/stamped form by the optician right?).

Ensure you state this and appeal to their discretion. Hopefully as you started on time you are OK.

Good luck.
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Old 23.03.2011, 17:15
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Re: missing deadline for driving licence change

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hello. i have been very stupid and did not exchange my driving licence within a year of moving.
Assuming that you hold a EU driver's license for cars: The deadline for getting this converted without having to pass a test is not one, but three years. Note that I have checked a few German-speaking cantons only, better check for yourself regarding Geneva.
However, you are not permitted to drive within Switzerland using your old license for more than 12 months from moving.
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Old 20.04.2011, 10:38
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Re: missing deadline for driving licence change

I checked with the Zurich authorities as I am finishing my one year in few days. They said, I can exchange my UK license after a year also with out taking a re-test but I cannot drive (use UK license) between completion of 1 year until I exchange.

In sum, your European license is no more valid after a year, but you can exchange. I don't know abt fees.
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Old 30.11.2011, 18:34
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Re: missing deadline for driving licence change

I can concur. I am from the UK.
I have been in Switzerland for 23 months.
I recently applied for and got a Swiss driving licence.

This is how.
Step1: Fill in the form at this website. http://www.stva.zh.ch/internet/siche...umschreib.html
Step2: Go to optician and get them to stamp the form. Pay them around 20 sFr
Step3: Go to your local kreisburo (Mine was in Oerlikon) and hand in the form and your UK licence. Show them your residence permit and pay them 20 sFr.
Step4: Wait for 3 days and your licence will arrive in the post.

All of the above took me 15 mins of effort
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Old 07.01.2013, 10:38
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Re: missing deadline for driving licence change

I didn't make the deadline either. In my experience, there's no way out - you need to re-do the test. However, it's really very easy; just take a couple of lessons in the area where you will take the test so that you know the rules of the road where you are and the instructor will give you hints on the tricks the examiner might try on you. Then all you have to do is turn up on the test day 15 minutes earlier than necessary and off you go! There's no theory and no emergency responder exam so it's just the practical.
Good luck!
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Old 07.01.2013, 15:10
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Re: missing deadline for driving licence change

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now however i want to buy a car and i obviously do not want to come a cropper with the friendly local constabulary but neither do i want to have to go through the nonsense of doing the swiss driving test.
If your foreign licence is current, then I think there is a good chance that you can still do so.
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Old 07.01.2013, 15:36
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Re: missing deadline for driving licence change

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I didn't make the deadline either. In my experience, there's no way out - you need to re-do the test. However, it's really very easy; just take a couple of lessons in the area where you will take the test so that you know the rules of the road where you are and the instructor will give you hints on the tricks the examiner might try on you. Then all you have to do is turn up on the test day 15 minutes earlier than necessary and off you go! There's no theory and no emergency responder exam so it's just the practical.
Good luck!
To be honest, It will depend largely on your Nationality (more so than the validity of the license itself).

Best to ask the "Strassenverkehrsammt" in your local area (as I don't know where you're from).

There is a list of nations that can just change, while others will need to do the test regardless.

If you are EU, UK, USA, NZ, AUS, CAN, etc. then you have upto 5 years after the expiry date on your license to change it over..... but there is a catch.
You have to demonstrate that the license was held "PRIOR" to your date of entry into Switzerland, NOT while you were here.
(this is to prevent people taking a cheaper license outside Switzerland and simply changing it over).
If you have your expired license, keep it, and just take that one in.

I updated my Australian license while I was here, but hadn't changed it to a Swiss one for the first 3 years.
The hardest part was just finding my expired license to show the Strassenverkehrsammt.

There are a million threads on here from people from India who seem to have a pretty hard time with the license, and I'm sure others will give you horror stories from other countries.

So as I said, the rules will mostly depend on which country you held your valid licence prior to entry into Switzerland.
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Old 08.02.2013, 21:01
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Re: missing deadline for driving licence change

Hello,
I have just applied for my licence change over - UK to Swiss.
I am 5 months late in applying as I had NO idea i had to do this, Now I am worried i will be banned from driving here. Driving is a major part of my job so really my employer should have told me about this but didnt. Anyone had any experiences of this in the Vaud canton?
I have been waiting 3 days for any reply from the people that change it over.
Thanks
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Old 15.10.2013, 12:03
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Re: missing deadline for driving licence change

As I know, you can change you licence even after one year in Lausanne.
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Old 15.10.2013, 17:56
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Re: missing deadline for driving licence change

Per my experiences in Zurich and what is being reported here, I think it may depend on who is at the counter. You may end up with a "per the check-box" retard.

I had similar problem (lazyness in my case) and didn't do the conversion after a year. The Zurich STVA person of probable low intellect and cognitive impairment told me I'd have to take tests blah blah even though I did the vision test. I had a US license from New York State.

I didn't bother to do anything since I was moving to Canton Vaud shortly. Went with similar paperwork, i.e application, vision test, and NYS license. No lecture. Just done by a super compentent, Mensa grade A genius, at the counter. I think it was after 3 years I was living here.

I recommend, you try another time, hopefully you don't get a demented, check the box, counter-staff.
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Old 15.10.2013, 19:09
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Re: missing deadline for driving licence change

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Per my experiences in Zurich and what is being reported here, I think it may depend on who is at the counter. You may end up with a "per the check-box" retard.

I had similar problem (lazyness in my case) and didn't do the conversion after a year. The Zurich STVA person of probable low intellect and cognitive impairment told me I'd have to take tests blah blah even though I did the vision test. I had a US license from New York State.

I didn't bother to do anything since I was moving to Canton Vaud shortly. Went with similar paperwork, i.e application, vision test, and NYS license. No lecture. Just done by a super compentent, Mensa grade A genius, at the counter. I think it was after 3 years I was living here.

I recommend, you try another time, hopefully you don't get a demented, check the box, counter-staff.
You can change your license for upto 5 years, however you can't drive in CH if you have been resident for more than a year on you foreign license.
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Old 15.10.2013, 22:16
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Re: missing deadline for driving licence change

I concur with above. I did not drive, and had my Australian licence renewed, which was amazingly simple to do, got the letter issued that stated when my original licence was issued, and had no problems at all changing it over in Zurich.

As long as you aren't driving on a foreign licence after 12 months, you have 5 years to change it over... for countries where there is a simple swap procedure. They also posted me back my Australian licence with a sticker added 'not valid for use in Switzerland'.

Don't assume it's going to be a problem - go and ask, but make sure you tell them that you have *not* been driving in Switzerland, but would like to now change your licence over, and get the forms organised...
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Old 16.10.2013, 10:39
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Re: missing deadline for driving licence change

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You can change your license for upto 5 years, however you can't drive in CH if you have been resident for more than a year on you foreign license.
actually that's what I told the senile box-checking counter staff, but she was not getting it.

Per her understanding/communication, one had to do the conversion within the first year of the B-permit. After then was a no go.

Canton Vaud..no problem, no B.S., no discussion. Seems like the 5 year clause you mentioned applied there. But appears case by case.
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