Switzerland – Geneva

Employment

The employment contract can be both orally or written. Either way the employer must provide the employee a written description of the terms and conditions of the employment.

Payroll

Salaries are paid on monthly basis. Paydays are usually at the end of the month.

HR & Labor

Working Hours: Full time employment is considered from 45 hours to 50 hours per week. Any hours worked after 50 are considered overtime and the employee must be compensated 125% of the regular wages. Employees are entitled to a 15 minutes of break after working for 5.5 hours, 30 minutes of break after working more than 7 hours, one hour of break after working 9 hours.
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Minimum Age: No official minimum age, however employees holding a managerial position must be at least 18 years of age.

Immigration

Employees who are not citizens of EU/ETFA must apply for a working permit. The employer must submit the paperwork to the labor entity. This has to be done prior to entering Switzerland, given that the employee’s qualifications fall under the employment requirements set by the Swiss government.

Minimum Wage

Minimum wage is $25 an hour.

Pension Fund

The employer contributes 4.2%.

The employee contributes 4.2%. There is no salary ceiling.

Severance Payments

Employee is entitled to a severance pay if they are over the age of 50 and have worked in the company for 20 consecutive years. The payment is two months of salary.

Advance Notice

At least one week of notice.

Termination Procedure

If the employee has been working in the company for 1 year, they receive one-month notice, from 2 years to 9 years they receive two months’ notice, from then on, three months’ notice.

Sick Days

Many employers take out an insurance for daily allowance during illness to be able to pay their employees 80% during prolonged absences due to illness. Employers pay for at least half of the amount of the premiums. Wage continuation applies for the duration of the employee’s inability to work, but no longer than 720 days within 900 consecutive days.

Vacation Days

Employees over the age of 20 receive 4 weeks of paid holiday. Under the age of 20, they receive 5 weeks of paid holiday.

Maternity Leave

Maternity leave lasts 98 days (or 14 weeks), from the day it starts. Both full-time and part-time employees are entitled to maternity leave. Women who return to work earlier lose their entitlement to compensation.o Mothers are paid 80% of their wages in the form of a daily allowance, but no more than CHF 196 per day. Cantonal provisions, staff rules and collective labor agreements may provide additional solutions.

Paternity Leave

In the private sector, employers must grant employees “regular working hours and days” off for family events. New fathers can therefore ask their employers for one to two days off for the birth of their child. These details are set out in your employment contract.

Public Holidays

Public holidays vary from depending on the canton.

Expat Benefits

Expats in Switzerland can choose to deduct lump-sum expatriate deduction monthly only if their permanent home in their home country is available during the assignment, if the house has been rented or unavailable, the lump sum is not accepted. Double housing cost reduction is also available only if the home country housing is permanently owned and available by the expat. Costs for traveling that are considered obligatory for the move will also be deducted. For the period of 5 years, school costs can also be deducted for expat’s children. Only expats who are executive employees and specialist working in Switzerland temporarily, with a letter of assignment, that states the employment term is less than 5 years and the employee will return to the home country after the assignment is over, are qualified for the expat benefits.

Additional Employee Withholdings

1) Disability Benefits
2) Compensation for temporary loss of income
3) Unemployment
4) Accident Insurance
5) Family allowance
6) Administration fee

1) Employer contributes 0.7%
2) Employer contributes 0.25%
3) Employer contributes 1.1% if the salary is up to CHF 126,000 and 0.5% if it is over 126,000.
4) Employer contributes up to CHF 126,000
5) Employer contributes 1.2% - 3.5% no salary ceiling
6) Employer contributes 3% of the pension, disability and loss of income contribution.

1) Employee contributes 0.7%, no salary ceiling.
2) Employee contributes 0.25% no salary ceiling
3) Employee contributes 1.1% if the salary is up to CHF 126,000 and 0.5% if it is over 126,000.
4) Employee contributes 0%
5) Employee contributes 0%
6) Employee contributes 0%

VAT

VAT is 8% standard rate.