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Frequently Asked Questions
2014/04/02

1. Where can I find information on authentication application? How can I contact you?

Please browse our websites or the Embassy in Bern (http://www.china-embassy.ch/) and Consulate-general in Zurich (http://zurich.chineseconsulate.org) for general information and details of authentication application.

If you cannot find answers to your questions from our websites, please refer to the following Q&As.

You may contact our Embassy in Bern by email: visastelle@bluewin.ch. For urgent matters, you may send fax to 031-3518256.

Please contact our Consulate-General in Zurich directly when your questions or matters are related to the Consulate-General.Tel:044-2091500(15:00-17:00 Tuesday and Friday),Fax:044-2091501

 

2. Can I send application by post?

No. Applications by post, email or fax are not acceptable.

 

3. I already posted my documents for authentication to you. What should I do now?

Please come to our consular office to fetch it. If you assign another person to come, please give him/her a power of attorney.

 

4. Can someone else submit my authentication application? If so, do I need to give him/her a power of attorney?

You can ask someone else to apply for authentication for you. Please give him/her a power of attorney.

 

5. Where do I apply for authentication?

Authentication can be done in Switzerland when the documents were issued in Switzerland.

Documents issed in Basel-Land, Basel-Stadt, Bern, Fribourg, Geneve, Jura, Neuchatel, Nidwalden, Obwalden, Solothurn, Ticino, Uri, Valais or Vaud, applications have to be notarized in duely Canton, then legalized by the Swiss Federal Chancellery in Bern, and finally authenticated by our Embassy in Bern.

Documents issed in Aargau, Apenzell-Ausserrhoden, Apenzell-Innerrhoden, Glarus, Graubuenden, Luzern, Schaffhausen, Schwyz, St. Gallen, Thurgau, Zug or Zurich, applications have to be notarized in duely Canton, then legalized by the Canton's government, and finally authenticated by our Consulatege-general in Zurich.

 

6. Can I apply for notarization from the Chinese Embassy for documents executed in China?

No. Documents executed in China to be used in foreign countries must complete the following procedures:

1) Documents should be notarized by a Notary Public in China;

2) Documents should be authenticated by a provincial Office of Foreign Affairs Office or the Consular Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs;

3) Documents should be authenticated by an Embassy or Consulate General of the relevant country in China.

 

7. What's your address?

Consular Section of the Chinese Embassy in Bern: Lombachweg 23, 3006 Bern.

Consular Section of the Chinese Consulate-general in Zurich: Mythenquai 100, 8002 Zurich.

 

8. Can I apply in Geneva?

No. There's no Chinese consular office in Geneva.

 

9. Where do I pick up the authentication? Can you send them to me by post? Can someone else pick it up for me?

We don't send authenticated documents by post. Anyone can pick them up for you as long as he/she brings the pick-up form.

Please pick up the authentication where you applied. If you applied in Bern, please pick up in Bern. If you applied in Zurich, please pick up in Zurich.

 

10. How long does it take to get the authentication? Can I get it on the same day?

It normally takes 4 working days to get the visa. If you want to get it on the same day, please submit your application by 11 o'clock, and extra 50F will be charged.

 

11. I cannot come on the pick-up day which shows in the pick-up form. Can I come later?

The pick-up date is the earliest day your visa will be ready, so you can come as from that day.

 

12. When and how do I pay?

Authentication fee will be charged by pick-up.

Only credit/debit card (Visa, Master, Maestro) is acceptable in Bern. Post Financial card cannot be recognized by our POS machine.

Only cash is acceptable in Zurich.

Bank transfer or posted money in cash are not acceptable.

 

13. Do you open in the afternoon? I cannot ask for a leave in the morning. Do I need an appointment to apply for visa?

We only open from 9 to 12 o'clock, Monday-Friday. This is the same in Bern and in Zurich. There's no need of an appointment.

If you cannot come in the morning, you may ask someone else to come on behalf of you.

 

14. Do you close during local holidays?

Normally we only close during Chinese festival.

There is a holiday list on the website of our Embassy in Bern (http://www.china-embassy.ch/ger/zytz/t1138901.htm, http://www.china-embassy.ch/fra/zytz/t1138902.htm) and that of the Consulate-general in Zurich (http://zurich.china-consulate.org/det/zytz/t1108326.htm). Holidays may differ in these two places.

And once we have days-off, there will always be a notice on our website and in the auto-reply or our email box one or two weeks in advance.

 

15. Does the Consulate bear responsibility for the contents of the documents authenticated?

No. Consular authentication by the Chinese Embassy is merely the attestation to the veracity of the signature of an official and seal or stamp of Swiss Federal Chancellery attached to the document. Neither the Consul nor the Embassy verifies as to the accuracy, truth, legality or otherwise the contents of the document. Nevertheless, an authentication application would be declined if the contents of a document contravene laws or regulations of the People's Republic of China.

 

16. Does the legalization have a date of expiration?

Yes. A Single Status Certificate must have the legalization done by the Swiss Federal Chancellery and the Chinese Embassy within 3 months after its issuance. The Single Status Certificate will have a validity of 6 months after being authenticated by the Chinese Embassy. The documents related to marriage, health, tax bill and police clearance for the purpose of adoption must be legalized by the Swiss Federal Chancellery and the Chinese Embassy within 6 months after their issuance.

 

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