The Agreement on Citizens’ Acquired Rights concluded between Switzerland and the United Kingdom on 25 February 2019 applies from 1 January 2021.

This agreement only applies to Swiss and UK citizens based in Switzerland in the UK. With regard to the recognition of foreign professional qualifications, the following rights are assured:

  • All decisions regarding recognition made before 1 January 2021 remain permanently valid.
  • Recognition procedures started before 1 January 2021 shall continue in accordance with the Agreement on the Free Movement of Persons (AFMP).
  • Persons who have not yet submitted an application or who are still studying or in training on the 31 December 2021 have until 31 December 2024 to apply for their qualifications to be recognised. Applications will be examined according to the criteria, which were applicable with the AFMP. Up to 31 December 2024, a Swiss national who wishes to have their Swiss qualification recognised in the UK so that they can work there does not need to be resident in the UK to apply for recognition of their qualification under the AFMP. After that date, qualifications will be recognised either in accordance with national law or in accordance with a possible future agreement.

Rules for UK service providers living in an EU member state:

  • Self-employed UK service providers not living in the UK are not covered by the Agreement on Citizens’ Acquired Rights. However, anyone working for an employer in a EU country can be posted to Switzerland under the terms of the AFMP, irrespective of their nationality, provided they are integrated into the job market in the EU country in which they are domiciled. Posted workers remain bound by their employment contract to their employer in the country in which they are domiciled and receive instructions from the employer. A UK national established in the EU who is an employee of an employer established in the EU (natural or legal person) can therefore continue to benefit from the AFMP and the facilitated declaration procedure for the recognition of professional qualifications.
  • As self-employed persons, directors and managers are not in this same subordinate relationship, the terms of the AFMP do not apply to them. In other words, they cannot come and work in Switzerland under the service provision declaration procedure.

Rules for UK service providers based in the UK:

According to the CRA, UK service providers based in the UK can submit their notification to SERI after 31 December 2020 only if they meet both of the following conditions:

  1. They exercise their activity based on a written service agreement concluded before 31 December 2020, and
  2. Service provision commenced before 31 December 2020.

For more information please refer to the State Secretariat for Migration’s Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs), or the FDFA’s Brexit webpage.