4 most important law changes in Switzerland 2021

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Paternity leave

As of 1 January 2021, a two-week paternity leave (10 working days) will be introduced, which will lead to changes in the regulations of the Compensation Act (EOG). Paternity leave can be taken flexibly within six months after the birth of the child.

Accordingly, the entitlement to paternity allowance does not expire upon resumption of employment, as is the case with maternity allowance.

The allowance is paid to the father who was in gainful employment at the time of the child’s birth, whether as an employee or self-employed.

If the employer continues to pay wages during the leave, the compensation is paid directly to the employee or employer.

To finance parental leave, the EO contribution rate will be increased from 0.45% to 0.5% as of 1 January 2021.

Occupational benefits

Article 47a BVG will come into force on 1 January 2021. According to this article, all insured persons who are older than 58 and have been dismissed by their employer may remain in the pension scheme.

Anyone who was excluded from the pension fund after 31 July 2020 may also apply for reinstatement.

Pension funds can provide for continued insurance from the age of 55 and must be made aware of this possibility by the employer.

The new regulations allow employees to remain dependent on the old pension fund and to continue their retirement benefits. On the one hand, the interest rate of a pension fund is higher than that of a retirement savings account; on the other hand, you can choose between a lump sum and a pension.

Supplementary benefits (EL)

An asset threshold of CHF 100,000 (married couples: CHF 200,000) now applies. In principle, anyone with assets above this threshold is not entitled to EL.

Owner-occupied properties are not included in the assets, but holiday homes and investment properties are.

In addition, the tax-free amounts are reduced from CHF 37,500 to CHF 30,000 for singles and from CHF 60,000 to CHF 50,000 for couples.

Anyone who inherits more than CHF 40,000 must pay part of it back to the EL implementing agencies.

Supplementary benefits and rent

Recipients of supplementary benefits will be allowed to offset more rental costs from 2021. Until now, an annual limit of CHF 13,200 and CHF 15,000 for couples applied.

Today, a distinction is made between 3 rental regions, resulting in a maximum deduction of CHF 16,440 for individuals and CHF 23,520 for couples.

As far as health insurance premiums are concerned, from 2021 onwards the health insurance premiums actually paid will be reimbursed but may not exceed the regional average.

Save even more taxes

Those who pay into pillar 3a can save a lot of tax, depending on the region. From 2021, the maximum amount has been increased even further.

How much tax can you save with Pillar 3a?

A single person in the municipality of Lucerne with a net salary of CHF 60,000 can save up to CHF 1,500 in taxes per year.

In Bern, a single person with an annual income of CHF 100,000 can even save up to CHF 2,300 a year in taxes by paying into the 3rd pillar.

An insured person with a pension fund can deduct CHF 6,883. For persons without a pension fund, the new maximum amount is CHF 34,416.

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