Permit B expiring Non-Eu (Indian) quit my PhD

Dear members,

I have a rather unpleasant situation. I joined a PhD program in Basel in November 2022 and lately quit it because I had an offer from a company and I wanted to switch to corporate. Now the company lose their main clients and can't hire me anymore and I have no way back to my PhD because relations are sour now. I am applying for other jobs and giving interviews but nothing too hopeful yet. My B permit is ending end of October 2023 so exactly in 2 and a half months from now. I started to be panicking now. I recently received the permit renewal form also. I don't know what to do right now or what are my options to extend my permit. I am not yet 1 year in Switzerland. Can RAV help me somehow with my permit extension only? I do not need financial support as of now I got some savings. I saw some old threads on this topic and read that it is also not easy to change the employer on non-EU B-permit. Is it still true? what are the challenges and how to overcome them? (in case I land a new job in 2 and half months so I know how to face it or tell the company what they can do) --maybe too many questions, I am sorry. Any experience or knowledge sharing could really help me a lot.

If your permit was tied to your PhD then it’s probably now invalid since you quit your post. There will be no way to extend the permit and no, you’re not entitled to help from RAV. Get yourself down to the cantonal migration office and make sure of your residence status because if I’m right and it’s effectively expired you’re going to have to make arrangements to leave the country pretty quickly.

And no, it’s not easy to switch employers. You should never have quit the PhD until you had confirmation that the switch to the other company had been approved by the Swiss authorities.

OP. As suggested, get clarity on your permit situation asap.

Benefit of hindsight, you should have stayed with the Phd.

See if they will reconsider their decision else you will not have reasonable grounds to remain in CH.

You can't extend your student permit if you're not a student, and even if you were able to claim RAV payments, there's no way you could use that to extend your permit because that wouldn't just be a change of employer, but also a change of purpose from studies to gainful employment, which for non-EU is severely restricted.

Your only options are to somehow get your PhD position back, or very quickly find a new job that can apply for a permit for you asap... That's the kind of things people should research before making big decisions! Even if the company had maintained its job offer there was no guarantee you would have gotten a permit for it...

You might as well go back to your PhD supervisor and apologize, say what an idiot you have been, say sorry for messing up their research program. You burnt your bridges it seems. You will look like a complete idiot for 15 minutes. They should think more of you after that though for going back and apologizing. Can't do more harm, and might even do some good.

I cannot give too many details because the world is small, and university institutes are even smaller. So...person #1 got an offer for PhD position with FNS/SNF funding. Person #1 did not take the offer, and person #2 got the job. Person #2 starts the job and person #1 return a few months later precisely asking the job declined before. Position is already taken, professor tells that unless person #1 quits, nothing can be done...and nothing was done. Another professor felt sorry for person #1 and makes a new application for FNS/SNF funding. I don't remember exactly, but person #1 had to wait more than 1 year until the new funding got approved and PhD could be started. Of course, person #1 was in the position to wait without worrying about expulsion (Schengen zone citizenship).

@aaaannni: I have no time to make a search right now, but I think the access to unemployment benefits it's out of reach. First, you have to contribute (work) at least 12 months over the last 24 months to be able to get RAV payments. Then, the B permit must say something like "formation with employment" in German in the back of the card. This is important because you were a student, and once you're not a student anymore the permit is not valid anymore, thus if you don't have a valid residence permit you cannot apply for RAV.

Right now you're in a grey zone: your permit says "Oct XX day". It's part of the normal procedures that your ex-employer notifies cantonal authorities that you're not working with them anymore. The border police won't knock your door, but if it's more than a few weeks after resigning, and you arrive to passport control in the airport, questions will be made. If it have been a few months, police at passport control may tell the word "overstay" and it won't be nice. If you really want to stay in CH, it's time to get to talk to a lawyer to get the best advice you can get on how to live in the grey zone. Of course, also get another job offer. Hiring slows down during summer. But, after looking at my unread emails today, it seems everyone is back to work since last Monday 14th. Good luck

There are several different ‘Non-EU B’ permits, so you would need to check whether you are even allowed to find a new job. You check with AWA (…nd-arbeit.html )

They will clarify over the phone, using your permit number, if you are permitted to change employers or not. It is possible that you were not even allowed to do this from the student visa anyway…

Yes, you may need to panic - and prepare to leave the country very soon. Overstaying can mean being banned from the Schengen zone for a long period of time.

Just anecdotally, a friend of mine ages ago, who had their student B permit expire in the system (it hadn't really expired just the computers said it had), did in fact had the police come to their apartment and our workspace searching for them.

Well, this is one of those rare times I'm called "optimistic". That means border police might be more active than expected. Never seen that that personally, but kngavl has 1 data point.

Thanks for your responses.

My PhD contract is not terminated and is still valid until 31st October and until when my B permit is also valid. Only my supervisor told me that I do not need to work anymore and released me. I still receive a salary every month and will until the end of my contract (I believe).

I reached out to the migration office about the possibility of changing jobs with my current permit (passed my Zemis no). She responded, "As a 3-state citizen, your new employer must submit an application to the cantonal employment office and as soon as we have the ok, we can adjust your permit."

Also on my B-permit, it is written Ausbildung mit Erwerbstatigkeit (which translates to education with employment).

I was thinking of going to RAV today and registering there in person.

Please suggest to me what are still my options after these few updates. Thank you so much for giving your valuable thoughts and input.

as suggested by others on this thread, your only option is to go back to the Ph.D. program. That's the only way you can protect your permit. Finding an employer who is willing to sponsor your permit takes several months. Given your permit expires in 2 months, you should consider sticking to the Phd plan and reassess finding a job etc once you finish your Phd.

Going to RAV will only complicate your situation as the Fed Population office will get notified about your job situation. and they might even initiate your removal process. Furthermore, they could suspect your intentions and may not extend your PhD related B permit.

Sorry for being such a pessimistic guy but this might be the ultimate passive-aggressive reaction from your ex-employer. Don't worry, be happy...and this guy will take pleasure from your fall.

That might be why your employer is not firing you right away. Professors are expected to submit annual reports, and if they fire someone during yearly check it's fine. If they fire you at the middle of the year, this means they are not working hard enough to improve your skills. So, what is more convenient for professors?

So going to RAV would seem pointless to me until you stop getting paid.

How was the PhD going? Disaster and you wished you never started, or the best thing ever, but the financial pressures your family went through supporting you so far made you pursue some fantasy money pot that wasn't really there?

Are you a humble person who greatly underestimates your own abilities at times, or an overconfident pushy type?

Do you want to finish the PhD, irrespective of permit issues? Would you pursue it with a passion?

PhD started to be a disaster as soon as I finished the tasks in a few months for which I was hired. I am a computer scientist and graduated from MIT. The group is mostly physicists with few knowing some coding but not to a great extent. To survive I need to learn very specific advanced quantum mechanics and I am unsure how much worth is it at this point and keep doing coding efforts all alone and I feel lonely and isolated and wrongly exploited, unheard and ignored etc.

My supervisor 'bitterly' but said that he will write me a recommendation if I like for some other position but not in the same university.

If they got me in Switzerland very quickly from a non-EU country supported by the university and issued me a permit within a week, do you think they wouldn't understand I can still be a good asset for the country after they look at my CV, diplomas, certificates etc OR is it more like because I didn't adhere to 'only' one job that they took me in so I am worthless and have to go back? Is there almost no chance they will extend my permit for 6 months and give me a chance to learn German and find a job during this period?

Your current permit is for studies, not purely for work. Your university didn't have to give priority to Europeans or Swiss people, and your permit didn't count towards immigration quotas. If you want to just work and not be enrolled at a university, your employer will need to apply for a work permit. The employer might get an exemption from the priority as you work in a workforce shortage field of high economic/scientific interest (there is no guarantee), but it will in any case have to count towards migration quotas. You cannot get an extension of your permit because the purpose changes and therefore the requirements. You need an entirely new permit, and you cannot get that through RAV.

Nothing to do with how you did with your current job or how it ended. Just that permits for studies and permits for work are two entirely different things, and as non-EU they have very different requirements.

The only good news is that since you're already legally a resident here, if you find a new job and they apply for a permit before your current permit expires, you can stay while the application is processed even if that is after your current permit expires (however you can't start working until it's approved).

But is OP that as the contract linked to the permit is no longer valid?

And finding a new job and get approved for the permit in 3 months is quite challenging.

So what programming languages were you using for your PhD research? It is relevant, permit and employer wise. You may well be able to write a compiler for the language used in a job spec, but the employer won't get that.

Doesn't need to be approved in 3 months as long as the application has been filed. The approval can come weeks or month later. Current permit stays valid after expiration as long as an application for renewal or change to a different permit is pending. So OP has until around mid-October to find a new job

Either the OP does not want to hear what we have to say or he/she does not want to hear what we have to say....irrespective, OP, gets your ducks in a row super quick because you are running against a clock and registering with RAV will not make the situation better.....

Going back to the very beginning

''I have a rather unpleasant situation. I joined a PhD program in Basel in November 2022 and lately quit it because I had an offer from a company and I wanted to switch to corporate.''

surely this was not allowed in the first place?

Sorry to say, but you made a huge mistake, and you will have to chalk it up to experience. Sometimes we are in situations which are not ideal and wish it was otherwise, but it is often much better to stick it out, complete your obligation and contract, and then go on to something which you will enjoy more and be more interesting and fulfilling.

I wish you the best of luck, but I am afraid there is probably no way to correct at this stage.