Work and residence permits in Switzerland
Do I need a special permit/visa when coming to Switzerland?
Although Switzerland is not a member of the European Union, if you travel to Switzerland as a tourist, you do not need a special visa. We can visit Switzerland for up to 3 months (90 days) without a special registration at the migration office.
When do I have to apply for a residence permit in Switzerland?
When you visit Switzerland no longer as a tourist, but as a person taking up a job, moving in with family already in Switzerland, or in order to look for work.
How do I apply for a residence permit in Switzerland?
It is usually sufficient to register at the municipal office where you live in Switzerland.
Important: the registration should take place within 14 days of your arrival in Switzerland, and at the same time before the first working day.
What types of residence permit can I obtain?
Permit L, so called Short-term permit, issued for a period of time from 3 months to 12 months. Usually issued to persons working seasonally in Switzerland, those with short-term contracts, i.e. for a fixed period, as well as to persons seeking employment in Switzerland. When the L permit expires, you will need to report to the local authority with a new contract and apply for a new permit.
Permit B, the so-called Long Term Permit, usually issued for 5 years.
Permit C, the so-called Permanent Residence Permit. With a C permit, you are able to vote in state elections and settle your taxes on the basis of a normal tax return.
Permit G, the so-called Grenzgänger, a permit for persons working in Switzerland but living permanently (the so-called point of life in a border country counts) usually Germany, France, Italy or Austria. A worker with a G permit undertakes to return at least once a week to his permanent residence.