If you are planning to save into a pension or already are, an independent pension advisor can make a difference. Pensions are often difficult to understand, especially if retirement is still a far-off concept for you. Administrative processes and rules for each type of pension are complex. Getting retirement planning advice simplifies things and helps you make sense of your options.
If you are leaving Switzerland and have pension funds, several options are available for you. For example, you can have your benefits paid out if you are leaving the country permanently. At the same time, you may have tax obligations. Here is some helpful information about what happens if you have a pension, and you decide to leave Switzerland.
Pension benefits after you leave Switzerland
When you leave a job in Switzerland, your pension fund will usually move to your new employer’s pension scheme. This is the case if it is under a Pillar 2 or occupational pension under the Swiss pension system.
If you are leaving Switzerland, your pension fund will not move to a new employer’s scheme. In these cases, your pension funds will move into a deposit account. This also happens if you decide to take a sabbatical or leave a job without a new role lined up.
How do I access my pension if I leave Switzerland?
When leaving Switzerland, your pension funds can be accessed. For example, you can withdraw all of your pension funds for Pillar 3a pensions. This is allowed, regardless of which country you are moving to.
You can also withdraw funds with a Pillar 2 pension. If you move outside the EU, there are generally no restrictions when it comes to withdrawing your pension fund assets. Regardless of where you are moving, a Pillar 2b pension can be cashed out, even within the EU/EFTA.
Rules for a Pillar 2a pension are a bit different. Again, you can access funds if moving outside the EU/EFTA, like Pillar 2b. If you move within the EU/EFTA, you can only access part of your Pillar 2a pension. Some of the pension remains blocked until you turn 60 or if you are buying a new home.
You will be required to pay withholding tax for all Pillar 2 and Pillar 3a pension withdrawals. The rate varies across the country, and it depends on which canton the pension is held in. You will also need to submit proof of deregistration from the local municipality where you have lived. If you are married, your partner also needs to approve.
Keeping your pension funds in Switzerland
If you’re leaving Switzerland but plan to leave your pension funds in the country, they’ll be in a deposit account. These accounts usually do not offer a lot of flexibility for investment. If you want to grow your savings, this may not be the right choice.
When moving to an EU or EFTA member country, your Pillar 2a pension will go into a vested benefit account. These are held by Swiss vested benefits foundations. The benefits will be held until you reach your retirement age. You can withdraw funds in some circumstances, though a withholding tax is applied.
You can save money by transferring your pension benefits into a vested account. Chevrolet Consulting GmbH can help. I work with trusted foundations for vested pension benefits that are registered in the canton with the lowest tax rate. By transferring your funds in this way, you can save up to half your money on tax!
How can I save money when leaving Switzerland with pension funds?
Chevrolet Consulting GmbH helps you navigate the rules and regulations when you are leaving Switzerland with pension funds. With more than 30 years of experience in banking, I’m fully equipped to deliver expert financial management expertise.
As a client of Chevrolet Consulting GmbH, you can expect the following:
- Expert guidance through complex processes.
- Simple and straightforward steps to open a vested benefit account.
- Hassle-free and prompt payment transfers to anywhere in the world.
Request a free consultation
If you plan on leaving Switzerland and pension funds are involved, you will no doubt have a lot of questions. Chevrolet Consulting GmbH is a leading expert in occupational benefits, and I am here to help. You can save on tax if you have investments under Pillar 2 or 3a.
To learn more about how I can help you save, book your free initial consultation
All of us want to have a comfortable life when we retire, so planning for your retirement is essential. Given their complexity and importance, retirement planning and pension schemes are often outside our comfort zones. A financial expert for pensions makes a significant difference when you are saving for retirement.
Chevrolet Consulting GmbH is your financial expert for occupation benefits, including pension schemes in Switzerland. Here is a list of six pros for using a financial expert like me for pensions and retirement planning.
Six benefits of using a financial expert for pensions
A pension scheme helps you with long-term savings and secure your financial independence after you retire. At the same time, pensions are complicated. Selecting the right pension option is difficult, with each one offering different benefits. Here are the top benefits of choosing a financial expert like Chevrolet Consulting GmbH for your pension.
Sound retirement planning
An independent financial expert in pensions helps you select the right investment strategy to meet your financial goals. They will help you pick appropriate pension schemes and ensure you make the most of your investment. Seeking financial advice means you are more likely to meet your financial needs when you retire.
More choices and options
There are three pillars of pension schemes in Switzerland. Each one has unique rules and requirements. Knowing what is available and understanding each option can be difficult, especially if you are an expat.
Using a professional and independent financial expert in pensions ensures that you gain access to all pension choices in Switzerland and beyond. This means that you will avoid missing out on benefits that could be available to you.
Tracking your retirement investment
A financial expert understands your financial goals. They do more than help you make initial decisions about your pension. An expert will help you keep track of goals and manage your pension to get the most from it. If circumstances change, they will also help you make changes to your pension.
Informed decisions about your investment
Financial decisions can be daunting. However, a financial expert in pensions can help you make these important decisions. For example, the best time to transfer or cash in on your pension. They will ensure you understand your options and the implications of each decision. Most important is a smart tax optimization, core competence of Chevrolet Consulting GmbH.
An independent expert in pensions helps you find cost savings, particularly when withdrawing early from a pension scheme. You might, for example, need to close your pension if you permanently leave Switzerland before retiring.
These processes are often complex and typically mean you will face financial penalties. A financial expert will help you navigate these important decisions and save on taxes.
Peace of mind
Above all, a financial expert provides clarity about pensions. Using a professional means that you avoid worrying about planning for your retirement. With expert financial advice, you can rest assured that you will have sufficient savings when you retire.
Why choose an independent financial advisor for my pension?
Dealing with financial issues can be complex, time-consuming, and stressful. Thus, independent and professional advice is invaluable. I can help you make important decisions about your investments, including pensions.
A financial expert in pensions ensures your retirement strategy meets your financial goals. They help you understand different options so that you make the right decisions. An expert also provides ongoing advice, enabling you to make the most of your investment.
Why should you trust Chevrolet Consulting?
As one of the leading pension experts in Switzerland, I’ve assisted over 300 clients in making the right financial decisions. I provide personalized service and guide clients through complex pension processes.
If you are planning to leave Switzerland permanently, Chevrolet Consulting GmbH offers expert advice. This will ensure you benefit from tax savings on your occupational pension plan. This includes helping you open a vested benefit account and saving you up to 50% in taxes.
For more information, book a free consultation now!
If you are considering leaving Switzerland, you are likely wondering whether you have any tax obligations. In some circumstances, you will still be liable to pay Swiss taxes. Since tax laws vary between cantons and municipalities, your obligations will depend on where any assets like property are located.
As a financial expert for occupational benefits and expatriates, Chevrolet Consulting GmbH answers all your financial questions. Keep reading to find out more about your tax obligations after you leave Switzerland.
Taxes after you leave
Individuals who are residents or domiciled in Switzerland pay federal taxes. This payment occurs along with cantonal and municipal taxes on their worldwide income, with some exceptions.
You will not be deemed a resident if you do not plan to live in Switzerland permanently. You are also not considered one if, within a calendar year, you do not:
- Remain for more than 90 days if you don’t engage in gainful activity.
- Remain for more than 30 days if you are employed or engaged in gainful activity.
What are examples of relevant leaving Switzerland taxes?
You are only subject to Swiss income tax and net wealth tax until you officially have deregistered and have left the country. Still, once you leave Switzerland, taxes may still be applicable. Non-residents are liable to pay tax on, for example, payments from Swiss pension funds.
Taxes are also applicable to property-related income, including:
- Interest in real estate in Switzerland.
- Interest from a mortgage secured by real estate in Switzerland.
- Trade and agency of real estate in Switzerland.
You might also pay tax on business income or professional services, including:
- Interest in Swiss sole proprietorship or partnership.
- Trade and business attributable to a permanent establishment or fixed place of business in Switzerland.
- Professional practice in Switzerland.
- Services performed in Switzerland (with exceptions).
- Services rendered as a director or an officer of a Swiss corporation (with exceptions).
Generally, income for non-residents is subject to a withholding tax unless you file for an exemption. The withholding tax is calculated monthly. The actual tax rate depends on various factors, including the amount of income, canton, marital status and number of dependents.
Canton tax obligations
A non-resident with assets and property in Switzerland is subject to cantonal taxes. Each year, these individuals must file a individual tax return in the canton where the assets or property are located.
Each canton also has its own withholding tax tariff on income earned by non-residents. Along with federal tax on certain types of income, a canton may apply its own tax for non-residents.
When leaving Switzerland, remember to notify authorities in the canton where you live. You will be asked to complete forms to change your status for tax purposes.
Pensions and tax obligations
Normally, pension savings cannot be withdrawn early except in limited situations. For example, if you leave permanently, you can withdraw your occupational pension (pillar 2) from the Swiss pension system. You can do the same with the private pension provision (pillar 3a).
If you are moving outside the EU/EFTA, you can get paid out the total from your pillar 2 pension. If you move within the EU/EFTA, the so called mandatory part (or LPP) of the pension will be in a blocked account until turning 60. The other part is paid out. You can also withdraw your pillar 3a assets when leaving Switzerland, but taxes are applicable.
The amount of tax you pay on pension assets varies from canton to canton. You also need to provide proof of a new permanent residence abroad. If you are married, you will need your spouse’s written consent before withdrawing any assets from pensions, and this signature has to be notarized.
Double taxation agreements
In many countries, you are required to report worldwide income. Switzerland has double taxation treaties or agreements with over 100 countries. These agreements are designed to prevent double taxation. They also facilitate cooperation between Switzerland and tax authorities in other countries.
If you are moving to a country covered by a double taxation agreement, you may be exempt from paying tax. You can find information about double taxation agreements from the State Secretariat for International Finance.
How do I save, and are taxes applicable when leaving Switzerland?
When leaving Switzerland, taxes and obligations can become confusing, especially with rules that vary between cantons and municipalities. With Chevrolet Consulting GmbH, you get expert advice. I also offer tax-friendly services, including a vested benefit account. Vested pension benefits are taxed by the domicile of the pension fund at a special rate. You can save 50% or more, depending on where your pension fund is domiciled in Switzerland.
Contact me today for a free initial consultation!
When planning your retirement, it is good to know that you can rely on sound guidance. However, do you know what you should expect from the advisor you decide to deal with? Read on to find out what to anticipate from a financial advisor for pensions. Below are some helpful pointers.
How much are the fees for advice
Naturally, self-employed professionals need a source of income. When selecting a new financial advisor for pensions, you may want to know further details. For example, whether the person works for a life insurance company. In contrast, independent advisors are free to recommend a broader range of financial choices.
Tied advisors suggest one company’s products. They usually give advice free of charge during the appointments to set up the plans. However, pension savers typically pay the cost over the long term, as elevated percentages apply to the regular plan contributions.
Advisors have to inform you about the costs. Charges may be fixed fees, hourly rates, or a percentage of your periodic contributions to the plan. In addition, you ought to receive complete information about any pension trustee fees and annual management charges for fund safekeeping.
What a pensions’ advisor might ask you
Your financial advisor for pensions will want to ensure that the investment strategy you set up matches your requirements. The objective is to appreciate your current financial position, understand your goals and define your attitude to investment risk.
To set up a pension plan to suit your needs, an advisor will ask about the following:
- Evidence of who you are and where you live, e.g. passport or driving license and a recent utility bill.
- Dependents, i.e. a spouse or children.
- Other people to include in your financial plans.
- Insurance policies and investments you possess, such as company pension plans, savings, and ISAs.
- Mortgages and other loans.
- The investment amount, either in a lump sum or regular payments.
- Your anticipated retirement age to determine the investment term in years.
- Any long-term aims and objectives, i.e. what you plan to do with your money.
- Your desired retirement income, comprising essential costs, lifestyle and discretionary expenses.
- Your knowledge and experience of investments.
Some financial investment products have a minimum investment period, while others are only worthwhile if held for several years. Not with Chevrolet Consulting GmbH: You have weekly access to your assets.
Investing should produce healthy returns, more than bank or building society accounts. However, excessive risk or economic downturns could lead to loss. Your advisor will assess what level of risk you are prepared to take, if any, with your money.
Distinct from attitude to risk, your advisor should help you calculate how much you could (exceptionally) afford to lose. The amount should not materially affect your standard of living. The calculation takes your investments, debts, income, and outgoings into account.
Combined, the attitude to risk and capacity for loss considerably impact the financial recommendations.
What else you should know
Additionally, your financial advisor for pensions ought to be familiar with the tax implications that apply to your pension savings. A good advisor will help you make informed retirement decisions and get the most from your pension savings.
Above all, your pensions’ advisor should personalize the advice and manage your investments over time. That way, you can count on a financially secure and comfortable retirement.
When seeking a financial advisor for pensions, it is vital to know what to expect from them. A good advisor will recommend how best to save for retirement and ought to explain the different plans available.
In particular, you will want to feel confident that the advisor is reliable. Will they work proactively to maximize the returns on your investment so that you achieve your retirement goals?
Professional and trustworthy advice
The earlier one starts saving towards a pension, the more substantial the fund will be. As a result, you will not have to depend on a state pension.
Here at Chevrolet Consulting, I can also help optimize pension plans, from career or job changes and different schemes. Unifying smaller pension pots into a single wrapper often reduces overheads through economies of scale.
I am not only an experienced financial advisor for pensions and other products, but as well a registered independent asset manager with 35 years of experience: Let me help you to explore the best options available. All advice is confidential; the priority is to make the right decision and achieve your objectives. Please call or click here to arrange a free first consultation today.
Do you plan on leaving Switzerland permanently in the near future? Might you be relocating for business purposes? Perhaps you instead wish to experience what other nations have to offer. Either way, it is crucial to appreciate how this move may affect your taxes and pension.
Let us look at some concerns and how you can be fully prepared for what is in store.
How Will Leaving Switzerland Permanently Affect Your Bank Account?
It is not uncommon to open up a separate bank account once you have officially left Switzerland. However, many individuals will choose to retain a domestic account. This is even more important if you happen to be receiving an ongoing form of supplemental income.
Note that non-resident surcharges may sometimes apply after you have departed Switzerland. Therefore, it could be wise to open up an international account while you are still a legal resident. Here are some of the banks that are located in Switzerland (1):
- all Cantonal Banks
- Swissquote Bank
Of course, it is always recommended that you consult Marcel Chevrolet to learn more about your options.
Health Care for Swiss Émigrés at a Glance
As this article notes, healthcare is another logical concern to address. The good news is that you can retain your original plan. The only caveat is that this coverage will normally expire after 120 days.
Nonetheless, there are possible exemptions. For instance, you may be provided with an extension if you have relocated at the behest of an employer. In this scenario, the policy in question can remain valid for up to six years.
How Will Your Pension be Affected After Leaving Switzerland Permanently?
Pension plans are yet another area to address. Of course, leaving Switzerland permanently is much different than simply changing employers. The main issue here is whether you will be relocating to an EU or non-EU country.
If you relocate to a region outside the European Union, your funds can be withdrawn without any issues. It is recommended to transfer your assets to a vested benefit foundation in a canton with low taxes.
Things are slightly more complicated for those who plan on living in an EU nation. These are the rules:
- You may choose to withdraw your extra mandatory part after leaving Switzerland permanently, but this is not a necessity.
The mandatory (LPP) part can only be paid out, when:
- turning 60 for men and 59 for women or
- Financing a home or for the downpayment of an existing mortgage.
Note that such an action will be subject to a capital withholding tax.
It should be mentioned that the tax rate is associated with the domicile of the foundation of the vested benefits. It is not applicable to your physical (or prior) address in Switzerland. In this case, you could very well enjoy tax savings as high as 50%, if you select one domiciled in a low-tax canton.
Might You Still be Required to Pay Swiss Taxes?
There are certain instances when émigrés may be obliged to pay domestic Swiss taxes. These generally occur when individuals are financially “tied” to Switzerland in some form. Here are some theoretical examples:
- If you are located abroad and still contracted to a Swiss-based firm.
- In the event that you own a Swiss property (capital gains taxes apply).
- If you still legally own a home in Switzerland.
If none of these cases is relevant, your obligations will no longer apply once the de-registration process is finalized.
Double Taxation Concerns to Address
What if you will be relocating to a country associated with double taxation? In this case, it is possible to reclaim the withdrawal tax. However, you will first need to prove that you are a legal tax resident within the country of relocation. Note that Swiss émigrés may still be subject to income tax obligations associated with their new residency.
Time for a Much-Needed Change?
It is clear to see that several factors should be addressed before leaving Switzerland permanently. Thankfully, many émigrés have already benefited due to assistance from Chevrolet Consulting GmbH. You may even be able to save up to 50% in taxes with my help.
Would you like to learn more about the emigration process? Do you have additional questions that require professional advice? If so, please contact Chevrolet Consulting GmbH for a free consultation. I have the answers that you have been looking for.
“I guide you through the administrative jungle”
Are you concerned about the pension refund consequences that might apply to leaving Switzerland? This is a valid question to ask, and there are some key factors to take into account.
What will happen to this refund if you leave permanently? Can you still obtain cash payments? Is there any way to retain this type of coverage even after you have left? These are some of the issues that we will address below.
Leaving Switzerland Pension Refunds: What are the Fundamentals?
According to recent Swiss statistics, the average monthly occupational pension value is 1692 CHF. These values tend to be the highest for those who receive payments before the legal retirement age (65 years for men, 64 for women).
We can see that such funds will obviously provide a much-needed source of liquidity. However, what if you will soon be relocating outside of Switzerland? How will your refunds be affected? Let’s look at the fundamentals before moving on.
Leaving Switzerland and Pension Refunds: Can They be Claimed?
It is firstly important to address the most logical question. Can a pension refund be paid out in cash if you are permanently leaving Switzerland? Thankfully, the government provides you with this option. Nonetheless, the outcome will depend on where you are relocating to.
As this article points out, those who are moving to a non-EU country will not encounter any restrictions. In other words, they can withdraw the assets associated with their pension funds. What if you will still be living in the EU? In this case, you will not be able to access the LLP portion (Mandatory part) until you reach the age of 60, 59 for women. The extramandatory part however is available anytime.
In either case, it is first necessary to provide proof that you have deregistered with your Swiss-based municipality. Note here that the benefits will be subsequently taxed at the source. In addition to those whose residency is unclear, this applies to those who have already completed the deregistration process.
What About a pension that is Left in Switzerland?
What would happen in the event that a pension is not claimed when leaving Switzerland? In this case, the funds will remain within a vested benefit account. Keep in mind that the subsequent investment opportunities will normally be curtailed. This is why withdrawals are often preferred.
The Mechanics of Cash Pension Withdrawals
Many individuals wish to withdraw their pension refund in the form of cash. Those who are married will need to obtain the consent of their spouse. Likewise, individuals who are single will be required to present official proof of their unmarried status.
Once again, it should be noted that withholding taxes will apply to those relocating to a non-EU country. The amount of tax will correlate with the canton where the original pension is held. This is also known as the “domicile of the foundation”. More details can be found by reading this informative post. This is why I recommend transferring your assets to a canton with low taxes.
Can You Maintain Your Swiss-Based Pension Refund?
There may be times when you decide to leave your pension intact even after relocating. For instance, perhaps you wish to explore investment options before making a cash withdrawal and paying withholding taxes. This is also a possibility.
There are three ways in which this coverage can be retained:
- To place the funds within a domestically recognized vested benefit Foundation, preferably with domicile in a canton with low taxes
- I recommend to NOT register with the Substitute Benefits Occupational Benefits Institution (known as the Stiftung Auffangvorrichtung BVG): Interest 0.01% and no investment options.
- Don’t let your last pension fund transfer your assets to the above mentioned Stiftung Auffangvorrichtung BVG, you should ask me what’s the best solution…
These methods are even more relevant if you have performed any buy-ins over the past three years. As they cannot be paid out in the form of cash, they will be automatically transferred into a vested account.
Planning for the Future
We can now see that there are numerous possibilities to make the most out of your pension refund. While some may choose to keep these funds intact, others wish to embrace a more proactive approach. For instance, it is often possible to reinvest pensions into tax-efficient bundles associated with another country.
It can still be difficult to know where to begin. Thankfully, Chevrolet Consulting GmbH is always here to help. Our team has provided advice to more than 300 clients from all walks of life. You may even be able to reduce your tax obligations by as much as 50 per cent.
Are you curious to learn more? If so, contact us in order to schedule a free initial consultation. With our help, making the most out of your pension refund will soon become a reality.
Have you accrued pension rights in Switzerland and now plan to leave the country? Naturally, you will want to know how to take your funds with you. Below, we explain the best way to retain significantly more of your hard-earned pension by reducing your tax liabilities.
Please read on to discover more, including how to minimise administration and ensure smooth dealings with the tax authorities.
Why is planning so important when withdrawing Swiss pension funds?
Workers and professionals who leave Switzerland can withdraw all their pension funds or pillar 3a assets. However, these payments generate liabilities for withholding tax based on regulations which vary from canton to canton. Notably, some restrictions apply if you emigrate to a European Union country.
Nonetheless, if you leave Switzerland permanently, it is possible to reduce the tax due on your pension savings. Who would turn down the opportunity to keep more of their pension fund? With the right advice, tax savings of more than 50 per cent are possible.
What are the three pillars of Swiss pensions?
The Swiss state pension (OASI) is the first pillar of retirement provision. After contributing for one year, anyone can claim a state pension in Switzerland. The amount payable varies with contributions paid and average earnings during those years.
Next, company pensions form the second pillar. The first two pillars combine. This provides a source of income to help retirees maintain their living standards during their later years.
In addition, astute savers often choose to make additional pension contributions — also known as top-ups. This option is the third pillar of Swiss pensions. It comprises financial products offered by leading local pension providers. Important: Contributions to a pillar 3a can be deduced from your income taxes. (max. amount for employees 2022: CHF 6’883.– and CHF 7’056.– for 2023.
Why a tax-friendly jurisdiction is crucial when you withdraw your pension fund
When you cash in vested pension benefits, a special tax rate applies when giving up a permanent residence in Switzerland. Instead of income tax, pension payouts are subject only to Swiss withholding tax. The rate depends on the location of your pension company’s registered domicile.
Here at Chevrolet Consulting GmbH, I work with several Foundations for Vested Pension Benefits. These organisations are registered in the canton with the lowest withholding tax rates in Switzerland. Thus, savings of up to half the tax otherwise due might be possible. Just to get an idea: One of my clients saved CHF 83’000.– by transferring his assets through Chevrolet Consulting GmbH, with only 4 signatures…
Through Chevrolet Consulting, I offer clients a tailored and efficient service with favourable terms. Professionals and workers who plan to emigrate from Switzerland can count on efficiency with standardised, automated and online processes.
In particular, as a pensions client, you can count on the following:
- Expert guidance through sometimes complex administration to avoid pitfalls.
- Straightforward opening of a vested benefits account.
- Glitch-free receipt of inwards payment transfers.
- Prompt international payments of funds received.
Example savings: tax on Swiss pension payouts
- Pension fund balance (savings capital) CHF 150’000.–
- Taxes on funds domiciled in Canton Zurich: CHF 10,225.–
- Via Chevrolet Consulting: CHF 4’975.–
- Tax reduction of 51 per cent: CHF 5’250.–
- Pension fund balance (savings capital) CHF 350’000.–
- Taxes on funds domiciled in Canton Basel-Stadt: CHF 31’175.–
- Taxes via Chevrolet Consulting CHF 15’175.–
- Tax savings of 51 per cent, so you keep an extra CHF 16’000.–
At Chevrolet Consulting GmbH, you can rely on expert advice and proactive pension tax planning. I specialize in pension transfer and withdrawal questions and fully understand the pension systems in Switzerland.
Therefore, you can rest assured that you are on the right track when you withdraw your pension fund in Switzerland. Please feel free to browse through my professional track record and financial experience.
Free initial pensions consultation
Naturally, you may have questions when considering withdrawing from your Swiss pension plan when you leave Switzerland. Chevrolet Consulting GmbH is a leading expert in Switzerland and your financial expert for occupational benefits.
As a result, clients can expect to halve their tax bills when emigrating from Switzerland. I will be delighted to confirm your eligibility, whether your pension investment is second-pillar or pillar 3a. If you are a current member of an occupational pension plan, please contact me in confidence for a free initial consultation.
Might you be leaving Switzerland permanently? While this region is attractive for many reasons, perhaps you are required to relocate for professional reasons. There can be other instances when you simply wish to enjoy exotic regions of the world. Either way, a handful of concerns will need to be addressed.
One issue involves your existing pension plan. What will happen to your pension if you leave Switzerland? Can certain pillars be accessed, and if so, are there any finer points to appreciate? Let us examine each of these questions so that you can make informed decisions.
Leaving Switzerland and Pension Issues: What are the Basics?
First, it is important to appreciate that many Swiss citizens have chosen to emigrate abroad. In fact, it is estimated that 11 per cent of the entire population resides outside of the country (1). All of these individuals have likewise expressed concerns over the fate of their pension plans. The good news is that you have several options.
These often depend on whether you relocate to an EU member state or a non-EU nation. Each scenario will require slightly different strategies. Let us now examine both in more detail.
What Do You Need to Know About Leaving Switzerland and Pensions in the EU?
Let us assume that you plan to relocate to a European Union country. You have the following options:
You have immediate access to the so called extramandatory part. The mandatory part (LPP) is only available under these conditions:
- when turning 60 (59 for women)
- for the financing of a home, or downpayment of an existing mortgage
There is still one point to mention. Any 2. Pillar contributions should be redistributed to a foundation for vested benefits with domicile in a canton with low taxes. These funds will remain in an escrow account until you turn 60. If needed, this money can then be accessed. Examples may involve purchasing a property or downpayment of an existing mortgage.
However, there are interesting options to invest the assets with low cost investment solutions.
Relocating to a Country Outside of the European Union
What if you will instead be living in a non-EU nation? In this case, you can choose to liquidate your pension funds or vested benefits after your depart. However, this is not mandatory. Note that you will also have to address a capital withholding tax. Again, you have many attractive investment options.
It is important to clarify one key point in regard to tax rates. These rates are associated with the domicile of the foundation for vested benefits, and not by your personal domicile.
Again: You should choose a foundation for vested benefits with domicile in a canton with low taxes.
Countries with Double Taxation Agreements
Pension concerns when leaving Switzerland may also center around double taxation treaties. More than 80 nations fall into this category, and here are some examples:
If you are relocating to any of these regions, it will be possible to reclaim the withdrawal tax. You still need to present legal proof of your updated tax residence. Keep in mind that domestic income taxes associated with your new residence may apply.
Payouts Versus Maintaining Coverage
Let us assume that you wish to cash out your benefits. If you are married, you will need to obtain notarized permission from your spouse. Those who are single must provide proof of their unmarried status. Cashing out normally occurs after departing Switzerland. Furthermore, buy-ins that occurred within the past three years will be transferred to a vested benefit account: Important: The total of your assets, (not only the part of the voluntary buy-in) will be blocked for 3 years since your last contribution.
- Establish a vested benefits package with a Swiss life insurance firm.
- Open up a benefits account with a vested benefit Foundation recognised in Switzerland.
- Register with the Substitute Occupational Benefits Institution.
In any of these cases, it is wise to speak with Marcel Chevrolet to better appreciate your options. (Insurance policies are mostly too expensive)
Understanding your pension options when leaving Switzerland is critical to avoid potential mistakes. Once you have chosen a specific withdrawal option, this decision cannot be reversed. Therefore, it pays to think ahead.
Furthermore, it might be possible to enjoy tax savings of up to 50% when working with a professional. Chevrolet Consulting GmbH is always here to help. Would you like to obtain expert advice? If so, please schedule a free consultation. More than 300 satisfied clients can attest to the fact that I have the answers to your questions.
There are many attractive qualities associated with living in Switzerland. Residents of Switzerland enjoy one of the highest standards of living in the world. Also, the fiscal advantages cannot be denied.
However, there may still be times when a resident needs to relocate to a different country. Therefore, it is important to address some common financial concerns. This way, informed decisions can be made well in advance of your departure date. Let us examine a handful of topics.
Is It Possible To Retain an Existing Bank Account When Leaving Switzerland?
Many Swiss residents wish to keep their existing bank accounts, even after emigrating to a different country. In fact, there may be times when having a domestic account will be necessary. For example, for those receiving rental payments from tenants in Switzerland.
Nonetheless, it is prudent to partner with a domestic bank that does not charge non-resident fees. BancaStato and Credit Agricole are two possibilities you can examine.
Additionally, it is always best to open up a new bank account while still legally residing in Switzerland. This process can become quite challenging for those who have obtained a non-resident status already.
Will I Still be obliged To Pay Domestic Taxes After Leaving Switzerland?
All legal residents who reside in Switzerland are required to pay taxes. As this article highlights, over 7 billion CHF associated with these taxes every year is redirected into pension plans. This is another reason why Switzerland has become so popular for those who are planning their retirements.
However, will you be obliged to continue paying taxes if you decide to emigrate to another country? From a legal standpoint, individuals are no longer considered to be tax residents once the de-registration process has been completed. Nonetheless, there are some exceptions to this observation, including:
- Those who continue owning a home in Switzerland
- The possibility of paying capital gains tax on Swiss properties
- Individuals who are still being paid by a company headquartered in Switzerland
As you can see, there are several factors to take into account before leaving Switzerland. Thus, it is always prudent to speak with a financial expert if you wish to clarify additional questions or concerns.
Pensions and Retirement Funds
Will pensions or retirement funds be affected after leaving Switzerland? There are two answers to this question. It will depend on whether you will be relocating to another country within the European Union or a non-EU nation. Let us examine both scenarios.
Relocating to an EU/EFTA Country
Here, the main takeaway point is as follows. Those who relocate to an EU member state can withdraw from their pension fund assets without encountering any restrictions. This generally applies to those who have already retired.
However, compulsory pension fund contributions (pillar 2A contributions) must be transferred to an officially recognized foundation for vested benefits. Thereafter, these will be held in escrow until you reach the age of 60. It is, therefore, possible to access these funds. This must be for certain reasons, such as purchasing property in or outside of Switzerland.
Non-EU Countries and Pension Savings
It is a little different for those who plan on leaving Switzerland for a non-EU member country. Departees can (but don’t have to) withdraw their vested benefits or pension funds prior to their departure. In this case, these funds will be subject to a capital withholding tax. The tax rate is not charged at the domicile of the person but on the domicile of the foundation for vested benefits. Massive tax savings of over 50% can apply.
In the event that the destination country has a double taxation agreement with Switzerland, this withdrawal tax can be reclaimed. It will only be necessary to provide evidence of a new tax residence in the country. (But you might be taxed there with income tax)
Health Insurance When Leaving Switzerland
It is possible to retain your Swiss-based health insurance until you have thoroughly settled into your new country of residence. This time limit is generally capped at 120 days for nations within the European Union.
However, note that compulsory Swiss insurance will lapse after this time period. The only exceptions involve scenarios when an individual has been sent abroad by a Swiss-based employer. In this case, an insurance policy can remain active for up to six years.
Please note that this is only a basic overview of some common financial questions to address before leaving Switzerland.
If you have additional concerns or should you simply require a bit of professional guidance, please contact Chevrolet Consulting. We offer free consultations, and one of our team members will always be happy to help you. After all, it pays to plan ahead.