In Switzerland, an authorization to reside in the country or “autorisation de séjour” is mandatory (art. 11 LEtr).

Despite the fact that Switzerland is not a member of the EU, the same conditions apply to EU citizens wishing to live and work on Swiss territory. Switzerland has signed the freedom of movement agreement as part of the bilateral accord with the EU, allowing EU/EFTA citizens to enter, reside and work in the country.

For non-EU citizens, yearly quotas apply for B and L permits. It is the employer who requests a work permit for the non-EU worker and who must demonstrate that no Swiss or European workers matched the criteria for the position. Only skilled migrants can be hired from the non-EU job market.

Obtaining a residency of work permit in Switzerland relies on different factors: whether the applicant is a EU/EFTA citizen or not, the obtention of a work contract, the current quotas in force and the skills held by the applicant.

The Swiss permanent residency permit, or C permit, is delivered after 10 years of residency or in some cases after 5 years if the level of integration is evaluated as successful (language requirements, economic stability, respect of Swiss values) (art. 34 LEtr). A number of EU countries, as well as Canada,  receive the C permit automatically after 5 years.

The main types of authorizations to live and work in the country are:

The short-term L permit for a stay of less than 364 days (work or resident)

The B permit that is delivered for EU and non-EU work permits, student permits, EU residency permits and family reunification permits

The G permit or “permis frontalier” for people living on the French border and working in Switzerland

The C permit equivalent to permanent residency in Switzerland

The legitimation card or CDL and the associated Ci permit for expats and their families employed by the UN, foreign consulates and permanent missions or inter-governmental organizations

Contact us if you wish to apply for a Swiss residency or work permit, we offer immigration services and prepare your application on your behalf by applying a flat fee.

For further information, contact us