How to Obtain Residence Registration in Switzerland


The entire process of moving to Switzerland might seem quite cumbersome and complicated, yet the game is worth the price. One of the important parts of moving to Switzerland is getting a residence registration, and in this article we will show you how to obtain it.

What you have to do in order to move to Switzerland

In order to move to Switzerland, you need to find a job via internet or by contacting the companies directly. Once the job is found, your employer will have to apply for a work permit for you to the authorities. In regions with a higher economic activity – such as Zurich canton – it will be harder to get a work permit for a foreigner and you might wait more time (because the number of work permits is limited).

In the meantime, you will have to collect the required documents, go to the Embassy of Switzerland in your country, and obtain an entry visa. Once it is done, you should arrange all the issues and head to Switzerland.

What is a residence registration in Switzerland?

Obtaining a residence registration is mandatory for everyone who has crossed the country’s border with an aim to settle in the country. After your arrival to the country, it should pass no more than 8 days (for the British citizens) or 14 days (for citizens of other countries) for obtaining a registration. You can obtain the registration of your residence at the local authorities (called Commune or Gemeinde) of your canton.

work permit

You need to visit your local community office in order to get registered

Residence registration is mandatory for all the Swiss citizens and foreigners who come to this country with an aim to settle or work. There are actually three institutions (for different places) where you can obtain it. If you are going to work in large cities, such as Zurich or Geneva, you will have to apply for a residence registration at a special department for residence registration (Controle d’habitants or Einwohnerkontrolle). If you want to settle in smaller cities and town, perhaps you should go to the area office (called Bureau d’arrondissement and Kreisbüro). The institution for getting a registration in the country area is called the local community office (Maison communale or Gemeindehaus).

In order to start working, you should have a registration. Besides, you should apply for a registration even if you are temporarily living in a hotel or other types of temporary accommodation. Once you have applied for registration, your documents will be submitted to and processed by the regional authorities that will give you a permit for work.

What documents should you bring for getting a registration?

In order to get registered in Switzerland, you need to deliver the following documents to the local community office:

  • A contract of your employment;
  • Documents that certify your civil status, such as birth certificates of your children, marriage certificate, family record booklet, etc.;
  • Photos of passports of yourself and your family members;
  • The document certifying your health insurance from an insurance company recognized by the Swiss authorities;
  • Valid documents of your and your family’s identities (passports, etc.).

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