Foreign individuals wanting to work in Switzerland are subject to certain procedures depending on their nationalities. Citizens from EU and EFTA (European Free Trade Association) countries are allowed to come to Switzerland and search for work during three months. This period may be extended to six months.
Citizens from other countries may only come and work in the country based on a work contract with a Swiss company. They must also have the appropriate work permit before coming to work in Switzerland. All Swiss work visas are issued by the cantonal authorities.
There are four types of work and residence permits one can obtain in order to work and live in Switzerland:
EU/EFTA citizens may first enter Switzerland and then apply for a work permit, while non-EU/EFTA citizens must first apply for the work visa.
As mentioned above, a foreign citizen must apply for Swiss work visa with the cantonal authorities. Among the documents they must submit are:
Considering each canton has its own regulations, foreign citizens may be required to submit other documents also.
During the approval period, a foreign citizen must also contact the Swiss embassy within his or her resident country and apply for a visa to come to Switzerland. Once the work and residence permit is approved, the Federal Office for Migration, the Swiss company and the cantonal authorities will inform the embassy. The Swiss embassy will then issue the visa.
For complete details about required qualifications and other conditions to obtain a work permit please contact our Swiss attorneys.
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