Practical tip - Immigration - NEW language requirements for C permit applicants
From 1 May 2023, nationals of non-French-speaking states who have a settlement agreement with Switzerland must also provide a language certificate when applying for a residence permit (C permit).
Persons already holding a C permit are not concerned.
When can I apply for a C permit? What are the rules?
As a general rule, a residence permit, called C permit, may be granted to a foreign person, who has resided legally and uninterruptedly for 10 years in Switzerland with the benefit of a short-term authorization (permit L) and for the last 5 years residence permit (permit B) and a certain command of the French language.
Anticipated request of C permit after 5 years of stay: Certain foreigners, depending on their situation or nationality, are entitled to a (C permit) after a legal and uninterrupted stay of 5 years (5 years with a B permit). These include:
- Spouses/registered partners of Swiss nationals (Art. 42 para. 3 LEI + 52 LEI) and permit C (Art. 43, 5 LEI + 52)
- Nationals of European countries with which Switzerland has concluded agreements:
- Spouses and minor children of nationals of Austria, Germany, and Denmark
- Nationals of the United States and Canada
The examination of the application will consider the degree of integration of family members over the age of twelve. A certain command of the French language is required: you will indeed have to attest to a level A2 of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR) orally (at least) and A1 to writing (at least) in the national language spoken at the place of residence.