UNHCR Switzerland and Liechtenstein (OSL)

The Swiss Government is responsible for the protection of asylum-seekers and refugees in Switzerland. The State Secretary for Migration (SEM) has the responsibility to process asylum claims and to decide whether somebody is granted protection in Switzerland.

UNHCR supports the Swiss government in maintaining protection regimes which comply with international standards and advocates for the rights of asylum-seekers, refugees and stateless persons. This work includes access to asylum, quality of asylum procedures and judicial engagement as well as women and children at risk and statelessness.

UNHCR has a country office for Switzerland, but the Office is not involved in the Swiss asylum procedure, does not intervene in individual cases and cannot offer any individual counselling. Legal counselling for asylum-seekers and refugees are offered by specialized counselling organisations. You can find an overview on this page in French or German. UNHCR closely cooperates with these organisations.

For more information about UNHCR in Switzerland and Liechtenstein (OSL), please visit:

Important: Neither UNHCR, IOM nor the SEM or the legal advice offices in the federal reception centres take money for any services. Their help is always free of charge. You should not be asked, at any point, to pay for any of the services provided.