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Obtain Spouse Visa in Switzerland

Obtain Spouse Visa in Switzerland


Bringing family members to Switzerland requires both EU and non-EU citizens to complete a set of formalities. For example, if you want to obtain a spouse visa in Switzerland, the B permit is the main type of visa your foreign spouse must file for.

Below, our immigration lawyers in Switzerland explain how to apply for a B permit for your spouse. We offer complete support in relocating here with your family, including in drafting the necessary documents for obtaining residency.

The main ways through which you can bring your spouse to Switzerland

There is no specific spouse visa issued to those who want to come to Switzerland and live here with their life partners. The visa category under which one can immigrate here is the family reunion visa. However, there is also the unmarried partner visa that can be obtained under certain conditions.

 Quick Facts 
Availability of spouse visa YES, Switzerland offers a spouse visa.  

Spouse visa for EU citizens 

EU citizens are not required to obtain a spouse visa for Switzerland. But if their stay exceeds 3 months, they must apply for a residence permit in Switzerland.  

 Spouse visa for non-EU citizens

Individuals from non-EU countries typically need to request a family visa to enter Switzerland. 

 Partner permit in Switzerland for unmarried couples

Yes, unmarried couples are also eligible for partner permits after fulfilling certain requirements, for instance:                                                           

       – Demonstrate a close personal relationship with a Swiss citizen;                                                               
 Reside together for a minimum of six months;
 Provide evidence of financial self-sufficiency for the duration of your stay in Switzerland;
 Show proof of adequate health insurance coverage, etc. 

The requirement to apply for a Swiss spouse visa from abroad 

No restrictions. Application can be made from outside or within Switzerland.  

 Application requirements for the foreign spouse (if any)

There are basic visa requirements, besides this, the spouse must show at least oral proficiency in the language of the canton he/she is moving to. 

Application conditions for the spouse in Switzerland (if any) 

Yes, in the case of residents, he/she must have a one-year residence permit available. 

Sponsorship requirements 

No, there are no sponsorship requirements to apply for a spouse visa in Switzerland.  

 Documents required to obtain a spouse visa

Documents required to obtain a Swiss spouse visa are:

 Documents attesting to the validity of the relationship (marriage certificate);

      – Passport of the foreign spouse;

      – Proof of legal residence of the Swiss partner;

       Proof of financial support. 

Visa application must be filed in person Applicants from certain destinations can use the Swiss online visa portal, but some may need to apply directly through their local Swiss mission. 
 Timeframe to obtain a spouse visa

8-12 weeks 

Validity of Swiss spouse visa 

The same as the residence card of the Swiss resident partner. 

 Possibility to obtain permanent residency for the foreign spouse

Yes, by following the usual residency route (living in Switzerland for a specified period, typically 5 years). 

 Citizenship availability for the foreign spouse

Yes, citizenship can be obtained after meeting specific requirements and residing in Switzerland for a certain period, typically 10 years. 

 Support in obtaining a spouse visa for SwitzerlandYes, our immigration lawyers in Switzerland can assist with the application for a Swiss spouse visa.  

Also, when seeking to move to Switzerland with one’s family, there are different conditions that apply to EU and non-EU citizens who already reside here. The good news is that your foreign spouse or civil partner can move with you no matter your country of origin, as long as are a holder of a Swiss C permit or of a passport of this country.

The foreign spouse has several ways to immigrate to Switzerland, among which the family reunion visa or the usual route that implies applying for a temporary residence permit on their own.

The decision should be based on the requirements he or she meets for one or the other type of visa. Our immigration lawyers in Switzerland can advise in this case.

The B permit in Switzerland for a spouse

The B permit is the equivalent of a temporary residence permit in other European countries and must be obtained by both EU and non-EU citizens. The same type of visa must also be applied for if you decide to obtain a spouse visa in Switzerland.

If you are not married but still want to bring your significant other to join you, it is possible to apply for a partner visa in Switzerland.

With the help of our immigration law firm in Switzerland, moving here will become a formality as our specialists will offer all the help you need for a stress-free relocation.

Moving to Switzerland can be easy, especially when you have the necessary qualifications. Employment, business and family ties are among the reasons you can use to relocate here. However, you need to choose carefully your option, as each has different requirements that must be met.

Are there any special requirements to obtain a spouse visa in Switzerland?

There are certain conditions to meet if you want to bring a close family member such as your spouse to Switzerland. You need to submit the necessary documents that indicate your relationship with the immigration authorities.

Here are the main documents to draft if you want to obtain a spouse visa in Switzerland:

  • the marriage certificate is the most important document when it comes to bringing your wife or husband here (the documents must be translated into one of the Swiss official languages and apostilled);
  • the passport and residence permit of the spouse settled in Switzerland;
  • the passport of the spouse joining the Swiss resident;
  • proof of accommodation in Switzerland, as well as proof of self-sufficiency for the Swiss resident and the spouse joining him/her.

You should note that the Swiss spouse visa processing time ranges between 8 and 12 weeks. The lack of documents is what usually delays the process of obtaining a Swiss B permit for the spouse. This is why we recommend using our immigration services to keep this time to a minimum.

With respect to the unmarried partner visa in Switzerland, slightly different requirements apply in terms of documents.

Obtaining a residence permit for Switzerland implies going through various steps, among which meeting specific eligibility criteria. If you need information on how to make sure you respect them, do not hesitate to get in touch with our immigration lawyers who can also assist with drafting the papers.

Employment is one of the ways through which it is highly likely to secure a B permit for Switzerland. It can be obtained by both EU and non-EU citizens who must first find jobs or better said be offered jobs by Swiss companies. In most cases, the employer starts the immigration procedure.

Conditions to be met by the Swiss spouse when filing for a marriage visa

Your marriage or partnership must be legally recognized in Switzerland when applying for a spouse visa. If you are not legally married to your partner, even if you have a Swiss passport, you cannot bring them to the country.

Moreover, family reunification is also based on sufficient space for all members living in a household. In other words, you must prove you have adequate accommodation for your incoming life partner.  If you are self-employed or unemployed, you must additionally demonstrate that you have enough money to support your family.

If you need more information on the Swiss marriage visa and the requirements attached to it, do not hesitate to inquire with one of our specialists.

Who issues the Swiss spouse visa?

As you may already know, Switzerland is divided into cantons which means that there are federal and cantonal authorities you can direct your immigration papers to. The process of obtaining any type of residence permit involves filing for a spouse visa with the federal immigration agency which will forward your application to the cantonal one in the region you live. Also, please mind that depending on the country your partner comes from can imply additional documents.

If you are experiencing issues in filing for a marriage visa, you can rely on our specialized lawyer who can help you prepare and submit all required documents to the authorities.

Language requirements for the foreign spouse

A new change in the legislation that entered into effect in January 2019 may require your family members to sign a cultural integration agreement and demonstrate a particular level of language proficiency when they apply for a Swiss residency permit.

The applicants may be required to demonstrate that they have level A1 oral language proficiency in German, French, or Italian in order to facilitate family reunion. If not, they must demonstrate that they have enrolled on a language course that will enable them to do so. Family members of L permit holders are not required to meet this condition.

If you want to apply for a spouse visa for Switzerland, the same conditions as when seeking to obtain a family reunion visa for other relatives. However, in terms of documents, these differ in terms of documents to prepare. This is why, should you need support, we invite you to get in touch with our immigration experts who can guide you in the application process for a successful result.

Settling in Switzerland as a spouse of a resident

The first thing after arriving in Switzerland is to apply for a B permit as a spouse. This is a temporary residence permit that will allow you to stay and work here. If you live here for 5 years, you will be able to apply for a C permit, which is the equivalent of permanent residency.

If you want to apply for a partner visa in Switzerland, you can use our services in drafting the necessary documents, especially since you need to submit evidence of your relationship with your foreign partner.

In order to qualify for a C permit for Switzerland, an EU citizen must live here for a minimum period of 5 years. During this time, he or she is allowed to leave the country temporarily, but without exceeding the timeframe allowed under the law. If you need information on this aspect, contact our lawyers.

How to obtain an unmarried partner visa in Switzerland

If you cannot obtain a spouse visa in Switzerland as you are not married to your partner, you can still apply for a visa to bring him or her here provided that you submit evidence of your relationship. Photographs, proof of being in contact all the time, as well as an interview with the immigration authorities may be requested in such cases.

As for the costs related to living in Switzerland, here are the main highlights:

  • the minimum rent per month starts at 1,200 CHF;
  • the basic utilities costs can cost you around 212 CHF for a medium-sized apartment;
  • if you want to purchase a home, the minimum price per square meter is about 5,000 CHF.

If you decide to apply and obtain a spouse visa in Switzerland, contact us!