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Brexit - What changes for nationals of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland in Switzerland?

Posted by on Jul 6, 2017 11:26:57 AM

And can I, as a foreigner, leave the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and take up residence in Switzerland?


Great Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May has played for high stakes - and lost almost everything. After the election on 8 June 2017, the United Kingdom has been politically paralyzed and it is not yet clear what will happen next. Has the Conservative Party formed a viable government coalition for the medium and long-term? What does the recent election mean for the Brexit negotiations? Will there be upcoming additional elections? And will the United Kingdom soon be ruled by a Labor government under Jeremy Corbyn, which would also lead to considerable tax burdens for wealthy individuals?

The consequences of the Brexit and the recently held elections in the United Kingdom are not yet foreseeable. Here below are some tips and planning possibilities for foreigners who would like to leave the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland due to political uncertainty. In addition, we will present what could change for citizens of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland in Switzerland after the Brexit.

Find the answers to the following questions in our PDF:

I. Nationals of Great Britain and Northern Ireland in Switzerland

  1. Why is Brexit relevant to me? Switzerland is not even a member of the European Union.
  2. What does the Agreement on the Free Movement of Persons regulate?
  3. What happens to the rights that arise from the Agreement on the Free Movement of Persons after the departure of Great Britain and Northern Ireland from the European Union?
  4. What is the position of the Swiss Government?
  5. I am British, I work in Switzerland and would like to continue to do so. Is this possible?
  6. Can I stay in Switzerland and wait for the approval decision for the new permit? 
  7. Supposing that no agreement is concluded between Great Britain and Northern Ireland with Switzerland - under what conditions can I work in Switzerland as a self-employed person in the future?
  8. What about self-employed gainful activities, such as being an entrepreneur or investor?
  9. I am retired – any options for me?
  10. I do not intend to conduct any gainful activities, I am not retired yet and I simply would like to live in Switzerland. Any options for me?

II. Moving to Switzerland as a so-called “res-non-dom”

  1. I am living in London as a so-called “res-non-dom” and I am worried about the economic and political instability in Great Britain caused by Brexit and the recent elections, and I expect taxes to rise substantially in the near future. Can I move to Switzerland?
  1. EU-/EFTA nationals
  2. Nationals from third countries

Download PDF 

If you liked this article, you may also be interested in reading about: Can I move to Switzerland? Swiss Immigration Regualtions for Enterpreneurs, Investors, Pensioners and Wealthy Individuals Explained, written by Oliver Arter and Daisy Vacher

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Topics: Private Clients | Corporate & Commercial | Tax | Employment

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Oliver Arter

Oliver’s practice focuses on private clients and their advisers (banks, family offices, foreign advisers) in all aspects of domestic and international wealth planning. He also specialises in banking, asset management and regulatory matters. Oliver joined Froriep as an associate in 2004 and became of counsel in June 2009. His work involves representing and advising private clients on the structuring of assets (trusts, foundations, international business corporations, international and domestic estate planning, matrimonial property rights and taxation). In addition he advises Swiss and international banks, asset managers, investment advisers and family offices on regulatory and contractual matters and represents them in proceedings. He publishes extensively in all his fields of practice. Oliver is an academic consultant with the Institute for Legal Theory and Legal Practice at the University of St Gallen, and is frequently invited to speak at or chair conferences.

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Daisy Vacher

Daisy's work focuses on matters of Swiss immigration and the procurement of work permits for companies wanting to employ foreign nationals in Switzerland. Before joining Froriep as an attorney, Daisy spent three years working for Fragomen Global Immigration Services in Zurich. Before that she was an associate attorney with Izaguirre Law in Colorado Springs, USA. In 2006 she completed her Bachelor of Arts at the University of Arizona followed by her Juris Doctor degree from the Sturm College of Law at the University of Denver in 2011. Later that same year she was admitted to the Colorado Bar. She is a native English speaker and speaks fluent Spanish. She also has a good command of French and Italian, and speaks intermediate-level German.

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