Immigration Update

MVA Immigration Team

Switzerland has recently become part of the Schengen visa scheme and therefore the requirements for U.S. permanent residents (aka "green card holders") and non-immigrant visa holders living in the U.S. traveling to Switzerland has changed. 

The Schengen visa is applicable for visitors traveling primarily to certain European countries as a tourist or business visitor.  The countries included are:  Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Iceland, Italy, Greece, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Spain, Sweden and now Switzerland. With a Schengen visa, the traveler may enter one country and travel freely throughout the Schengen countries.    U.S. citizens carrying U.S. passports may travel to these countries without applying for a Schengen visa.  However U.S. permanent residents and individuals living in the U.S. on non-immigrant visas such as H-1B and L-1 may require a Schengen visa for travel to these countries, depending upon their nationality and the type of passport they hold.      

MVA advises U.S. permanent residents and non-immigrant visa holders who are traveling to Switzerland, or any of the Schengen visa states to contact their MVA Immigration Team Contact to discuss whether they are required to obtain a Schengen visa.   Schengen visas can take several weeks to be issued, and often require a personal appearance for the visa to be issued.  Therefore MVA recommends contacting our office well in advance of travel so that we may assist you with this process.   



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