Switzerland Work Visa
Switzerland Work Visa is easy and hassle-free to get with Tetra Consultants’ assistance.
For work purposes in Switzerland, you need to have a residence permit before you apply for your entry visa. Your prospective employer applies to the immigration authority at their local Swiss canton for the permit on your behalf, which suggests that you need to have a job in place prior to making your Swiss visa.
Introduction to Switzerland Work Visa
- You can apply for a Switzerland work visa through the Swiss embassy or consulate in your home country after you have a work permit.
- The Swiss visa is also a Schengen visa, which allows free movement across all Schengen countries. As Switzerland signed the Agreement on the Free Movement of Persons (AFMP) in 1999, 欧盟/欧洲自由贸易协会会员资格 (EU/EFTA) citizens have greater ease for working and living in Switzerland.
- There are many types of Swiss visas available, including work permits, visas for the self-employed and residence permits. A residence permit is needed for all individuals who aim to live in Switzerland for a duration exceeding 90 day.
- You are not able to enter the country as a tourist and then take on work. If you wish to work, you will have to leave the country and then apply from your home country.
- There are fewer conditions for EU/EFTA residents as they do not require visas to enter or stay in Switzerland for up to 90 days. United Kingdom citizens are not included as the UK recently left the EU. For stays exceeding 90 days, you will need a residence permit.
- Whereas for non-EU/EFTA residents, they face more hurdles when applying for Swiss visas due to the implementation of permit quotas, which only allow a certain number of permits to be distributed annually.
Switzerland Work Visa Requirements for EU/EFTA Nationals
- Due to the guidelines of the AFMP, citizens from any EU or EFTA member state are permitted under law to reside and work in Switzerland without applying for a work permit, for a duration of up to 90 days.
- Your work permit in Switzerland is essentially your residence permit, which differs from your work visa. You are responsible for making your visa application, whereas your Swiss employer will register your employment either through the governments online portal or with the local canton authorities.
- EU/EFTA nationals who wish to work in Switzerland will need to look into the following types of Swiss permits:
Permit L (short-term residence permit)
- This permit is suitable for short-term residents who wish to reside in Switzerland for less than a year. If EU/EFTA nationals have an employment contract valid for 3 to 12 months, they are entitled to this permit. The validity of the permit is identical to the term of the employment contract.
Permit B (initial or temporary residence permit)
- This permit is for expats who want to reside in Switzerland for more than 1 year. They will need to have an employment contract of at least 12 months duration.
Permit G (cross-border commuter permit)
- This permit is for cross-border commuters who are working in Switzerland but reside in another EU/EFTA country. To be qualify as a cross-border commuter, the applicant needs to regularly travel back to their main place of stay, for a minimum of once a week.
Permit C (permanent residence or settlement permit)
- This allows one to stay in Switzerland indefinitely although the status needs to be confirmed every 5 years. You may apply for Permit C (settlement permit) if you have lived in Switzerland for:
- 5 years, if the applicant is from Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain and Sweden as well as EFTA nationals (Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway).
- 10 years, if the applicant is from other EU member states.
Switzerland Work Visa Requirements for Non-EU/EFTA Nationals
- Non-EU/EFTA nationals must obtain a visa, a residency and/or work permit from the State Secretariat for Migration before they enter Switzerland. They are generally eligible for work permits only if they are qualified professionals.
- Third-country nationals will face more restrictions and requirements when applying for a Swiss work permit. This can be attributed to Switzerland’s quotas for the number of work permits they distribute to non-EU/EFTA nationals, and the requirements for securing one of these visas is high.
- To be eligible for a Swiss work permit, a Non-EU/EFTA national has to be a highly qualified worker, possess a university degree or an equivalent degree from a higher education institution and have several years of professional work experience. Other considerations include your age, language skills, ability to integrate into Swiss society and criminal record.
- There is technically no official Swiss visa specific to self-employment. However, all individuals who desire to reside and begin working in Switzerland as self-employed people will need to obtain official approval and permit. To qualify as self-employed, the applicant must be a Switzerland resident. Non-residents will not qualify.
- To obtain official self-employed status in Switzerland, you have to register your business first.
- Regarding the process of obtaining Switzerland Self-Employment Visas, in addition to your application form for your company registration, you must also petition with your local canton with information as to why you wish to be self-employed.
- Those who are citizens of an EU or EFTA member state and desire to begin work in Switzerland as self-employed can apply. You must register with the proper cantonal authorities within 14 days of your arrival to Switzerland in order to obtain a self-employment work permit.
- Acquiring officially approved self-employed status from the Swiss authorities may not be easy due to the country’s already stringent standards for the employment of foreign workers. Most of the time, only individuals who have already resided in Switzerland for 5 to 10 years are provided with self-employment status.
How we can help you get a Switzerland Work Visa
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Do you need a residence permit and a work permit to work in Switzerland?
- Your employer in Switzerland will apply for it at the local cantonal employment services. In Switzerland, residence and work permits do not need to be applied for separately, as the former gives you the right to work in Switzerland.
How long are Switzerland work visas valid for?
- There are different types of residency permits in Switzerland. Their duration can be one year or up to five years. It is needed for all individuals who aim to begin living in Switzerland for a duration exceeding 90 days.
What are the steps to obtain a Switzerland work visa?
- Here are the steps to obtain a Swiss work visa:
- Secure employment locally.
- Completing the Swiss work visa document file.
- Your employer will apply for your residence permit in Switzerland on your behalf.
- You apply for the Switzerland work visa in your country before arriving in Switzerland.
Is it difficult to apply for a Switzerland work visa?
- Especially if you are not a EU/EFTA national, it may be difficult to get a work permit as compared to EU/EFTA nationals. This is because there are no quota restrictions regarding the number of EU/EFTA immigrants the Swiss government will accept.
- Here are some requirements if you wish to work in Switzerland:
- Be a highly qualified worker (manager, specialist, or other type of skilled professional).
- Possesses a university degree, or an equivalent degree from a higher education institution.
- Have multiple years of professional employment experience.
- You already have a confirmed employment position in Switzerland.
- Your employer has to prove that the position is unable to be filled by another individual who is a citizen of an EU or EFTA nation.
- The yearly quotas for Switzerland work visas have not yet been met.
What is the Switzerland family visa?
- Individuals who wish to stay with family members in Switzerland in the short-term, will have to get a family visa to stay with family members if the applicants are not from a EFTA or EU nation.
Does the work visa cover health insurance?
- No, it does not. You will have to secure health insurance yourself within the first 3 months of your stay. Doing so is mandatory for all non-locals residing or doing a job in Switzerland.