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Contract Law

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Labour Law

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Latest news

Protocol of Amendment to the Double Taxation Agreement between Switzerland and the USA in force as of 20.09.2019

Almost 10 years after the Protocol of Amendment to the Double Taxation Agreement between Switzerland and the USA was signed by representatives of both countries, it entered into force on 20 September 2019.

The focus is in particular on changes concerning the exchange of information between the two countries. The revision removes the distinction between tax evasion and tax fraud. Requests for information concerning such matters may relate to facts as from 23 September 2009, the date of signature of the Protocol of Amendment.

The Protocol of Amendment also contains a mandatory arbitration clause and exempts dividends paid to individual pension funds from withholding tax from 1 January 2020.

Do you have any questions on how the changes will affect you in concrete terms? We will be happy to help you.

Insurance Providers Allowed to Conduct Undercover Observations Again

The political and legal back and forth regarding undercover observations conducted by insurance providers within the Social Insurance System lasted for almost three years. It all started with European Court of Human Rights’ judgment of 18 October 2016. In its judgment, the court held that there was no sufficient statutory basis for such observations in Switzerland. In the following, a referendum was held against the newly created provisions allowing the insurers to monitor claimants. The Swiss electorate voted on this amendment to the Federal Act on General Aspects of Social Security Law (ATSG) on 25 November 2018 and approved it. However, as three complaints in this matter were still pending before the Swiss Federal Supreme Court, the statutory basis for monitoring claimants has not yet entered into force. On 8 August 2019, the Federal Supreme Court has rejected these complaints. Therefore, the amendments to the ATSG, together with the implementing provisions of the Federal Council of 7 June 2019, will enter into force on 1 October 2019. As a result, the insurance providers will again have the right to conduct undercover observations in justified cases as of this date.

Tax Reform and Financing of Old-Age and Survivors' Insurance

On the 19th of May 2019 a Federal Act on Tax Reform and Financing of Old-Age and Survivors' Insurance has passed the National Referendum. Therefore, tax privileges within cantons for undertakings which are predominantly internationally active shall be abolished. Such undertakings shall have to pay a full corporate income tax.

According to art. 20 par. 1bis and art. 18b par. 1 of the Federal Income Tax Act shareholders who hold at least 10% of a company's capital are obliged to pay tax on the income from equity investments as a federal income tax for 60% in the personal assets and for 50% in the business assets. In four cantons of Switzerland the taxation is even below 50%. The adoption of the above-mentioned Act entails that such a reduced taxation shall thereby amount to 70% in the Confederation and at least to 50% in cantons.

The profit out of a share sale is as a general rule tax-free. Under the new Act the tax exemption shall be repealed in case an individual or a legal entity sells shares to a company which is controlled by him/her or it.

If You have any questions concerning other ramifications of the newly adopted Federal Act on Tax Reform and Financing of Old-Age and Survivors' Insurance, do not hesitate to contact us!

About us

Dubach offers legal consulting to individuals, companies and the public hand like communities in a wide range of different expertise.

We act as traditional lawyers in front of the court but consult our clients also as a Family Office, give tax advices, take care of Real Estates and offer Relocation Services and domicile addresses for our clients out of Switzerland who are looking for residence or investments in Switzerland.

Further on we offer to our clients notary services in all corporate (as founding companies), marriage (marriage contracts) and inheritance (inheritance contracts and as willing executor) matters.

Dubach is a Just1 law firm (www.just1.eu). With our Just1 offices all over Europe and our contacts worldwide we provide to our clients excellent legal advice in national and international cases and transactions.