Federal Office for Migration

Procedure

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Application submissionThe employerSubmits the relevant application documents to the cantonal employment service. Depending on the case or canton that is competent to examine applications, applications are to be submitted to the migration agency of the given canton.
Workers from nations subject to visa requirement are requested to apply for a visa with the local Swiss diplomatic representation abroad.
Application screeningThe cantonal employment serviceScreens applications according to the ANAG directives and makes a preliminary decision. Applications approved by the canton need to be submitted to the Federal Office for Migration for final approval.
Application screeningThe Federal Office for Migration (FOM)Processes applications according to criteria relevant to the whole of Switzerland. The applicant, employer and both cantonal offices receive a formal written decision from the Migration Office. The decision is subject to a charge, payable by the employer, and does not authorize the applicant to enter Switzerland.
Issuance of visaThe cantonal migration authority (formerly aliens’ police department)Advises (by consent of FOM where persons from nations subject to visa requirements are concerned) the appropriate Swiss diplomatic representation abroad online to issue visa. Applicants are requested to collect their visa at that specific Swiss representation.
RegistrationThe employeeRegisters himself with the residents’ registration office not longer than 14 days after his entry into Switzerland. Only then is he allowed to take up his employment.