Switzerland allows all individuals to visit the country for ninety days. For this, you do not need to have a visa. But when it comes to an extended stay of more than three months, one needs a permanent residency visa. In this piece, you will find details on how to get PR in Switzerland, its eligibility criteria and the list of necessary documents.
However, getting Swiss permanent residency is not that simple. Individuals have to meet the eligibility criteria related to it.
Those who want to spend their livelihood in Switzerland must first apply for temporary residence. Then after you maintain the conditions of a temporary visa, you may become eligible for a permanent one. However, make sure you qualify all the eligibility criteria before entering the process of getting Switzerland permanent residency:
Besides your nationality and circumstances, it will also depend on whether you need a five or ten-year stay before applying. Now speaking of the application process, find the steps on how to get PR in Switzerland below:
Step 1: Figure out which visa type you want your application to be based on.
Step 2: Look for where you want to submit your application form.
Step 3: Fill up all columns of the application form and submit it along with supporting documents.
Step 4: Make an appointment with the visa officer.
Step 5: Show up on the interview date at the required embassy/VAC/Consulate.
If you have completed five years in the country, you can apply for permanent residency in Switzerland by providing the required proof. The supporting documents that may be necessary for self-employed, jobseekers, employed, student and pensioners are:
However, don't forget to call the immigration office to know about the documents as the Swiss canton has particular requirements.
The following are the different pathways that allow you to stay in Switzerland between one to five years. As a result, it enables you to become a permanent resident of this country. These include:
The details of which particular pathway will be suitable for you and the requirements you may need to fulfil is mentioned below in the list.
Getting a work or employment visa has become very tough nowadays. If you are Non-EU/EFTA nationals, know that the Swiss government has set a permit quota regarding the maximum number of permits issued. It means that expats have to wait for one year if the quota is met.
The requirements for Swiss work visa applicants has increased. In fact, the longer you stay, the more fluent the government requires you to be in the official language. For example, this type of applicant must know how to speak and write A1 level in the dominant language.
However, if you don't know any of the four official languages but still wish to apply for a B-level visa, you must submit proof of enrollment in language courses.
This category of nationals can freely live and work for up to 90 days in Switzerland without acquiring a work permit. After that, the company must register your employment under the government online portal and local canton authorities.
For a work period exceeding 90 days, they will need work authorization in the face of a residence permit. Remember, the residence permit and work permit for EU/EFTA will get combined.
Requirements for getting work authorisation depend on the particular canton, but the general ones that every EU/EFTA needs to present include:
The work permits that these nationals will have to look for include:
- Permit L
This permit is for a short stay, usually less than a year and will only be provided when applicants have an employment contract expiring before three to twelve months. Moreover, only those individuals opt for this visa type who do not profit from their employment.
- Permit B
If you want to reside in Switzerland for more than one year, then apply for permit B. The government will grant this visa to anyone who holds an employment contract valid for at least twelve months or are of an unlimited period.
However, remember that this permit has limited validity. In other words, holders must renew the licence after five years for another five years.
One more guideline is that if you are not working for twelve consecutive months when you apply for the permit, it will be valid for one year only.
Moreover, it is easy to get this permit if applicants can prove that they have sufficient financial means, accident insurance and adequate health.
- Permit G
Permit G is for a cross-border commuter. It includes EU/EFTA nationals who work in Switzerland but live in another country. The work can be one's business or job. However, one condition that must be fulfilled is that commuters must return to their residence at least once a week.
The validation of this permit is for five long years unless you have a contract that expires in one year. The visa will only be valid until the agreement stands (in the latter case).
Unlike the above, where gaining a work authorization will do the job, non-EU/EFTA needs to have a residency visa. Remember, one cannot enter Switzerland on a tourist visa and carry employment here. If you find a job while visiting the country, you must return and come back with the direct intention.
Besides proving your overall qualification and importance, you need to present the following documents as well.
Getting a business visa means applying for a Schengen Business visa. However you can get it only if you satisfy all of its requirements.
Documents Required for Business Visa
The requirements are as follows:
If an applicant is a family member of either EU/EFTA National or a non-EU/EFTA national, they can easily qualify for permanent residency. First, however, make sure the particular family member sponsor your Switzerland PR process.
If the family member is a holder of a B or L permit, then, in that case, they can sponsor other members only when the canton allows. Also, after approval, the individual can stay only up to the days their sponsoring family member is staying.
There is no particular self-employment visa for an EU/EFTA national or non-EU/EFTA national. Instead, they require authorisation to live and work as self-employed in Switzerland.
If you want to obtain Swiss self-employment, you must register your company first. You can apply it online at EasyGov. It can fall under any of the below categories:
After the interview process is over, you will get a notification of your visa processing. This notification enables an applicant to track the status of their application. However, there is an online solution too. Just follow the below steps:
Step 1: Visit the site of VFS.
Step 2: Feed in the reference number of your application and date of birth.
Step 3: Tick the ‘I am not a Robot’ checkbox and click on ‘Submit’ to access the service.
Only when you satisfy all the eligibility criteria, including living in the country for a specified period, you can obtain a residence permit in Switzerland. Remember, there are different types of visas and residence permits in this regard. So, when we say permanent residency, we do not mean Swiss citizenship. Instead, it is called C-permit.
The benefits that a permanent resident of Switzerland enjoys include:
Embassy of Switzerland, Nyaya Marg, Chankya Puri, 110021, New Delhi, India.
Consulate General of Switzerland, 102 Maker Chambers IV, 222, 10th Floor, Jamnalal Bajaj Marg, Nariman Point, 400021, Mumbai, India.
Consulate General of Switzerland, 1-6 Dr. V.S.I. Estate, Rajiv Gandhi Salai, Thiruvanmiyur, 600041, Chennai.
Consulate General of Switzerland, Titagarh Wagons Ltd, 4th Floor, 39, Premlata Building, Shakespeare Sarani, 700017, Kolkata.
Consulate General of Switzerland, No. 26/7 Rest House Crescent, Crescent Park, 560051, Bangalore.