A few publications that could be relevant for employers are commented on hereinafter:
Publication of the synopsis 2024: (available in German, French or Italian)
Publication of the types and rates of family allowances according to the FamZG, the FLG and the cantonal laws 2024 (available in German and French)
There are no changes to the family allowance amounts in the cantons. The contribution rates vary from canton to canton. Valais is the only canton to have a deduction for employee contributions to family allowances. Employees now pay a contribution of 0.17% (previously 0.42%) towards family allowances. The total contribution for family allowances is therefore 2.67% (previously 2.919%) (2.5% (previously 2.499%) from employers and 0.17% (previously 0.42%) from employees).
With regard to the duties transferred to the FAK, there is an adjustment in the canton of Neuchâtel for the AG contribution to the fund for the promotion of initial vocational training.
I also refer to my own overview available at: https://www.zulaufgmbh.ch/en/social-security/
The FSIO has updated many of the guidelines and circulars for 2024. It is always surprising how many guidelines there are for the area of contributions and for the area of pension calculations and benefits. The adjustments are made on the basis of amendments to laws and ordinances as well as relevant court decisions.
The following explanations focus on a few important adjustments in the area of contributions:
Guidelines on the relevant determining salary (WML) 2024
- New regulation regarding the provision of general abonnement (GA) to employees (margin no. 3007 f.); there is a harmonisation with direct federal tax, which is to be welcomed. It must be clarified whether the GA travelcard is used for business purposes. GA travelcards or regional travelcards are to be valued in the same way as under direct federal tax law. If an employee receives a GA travelcard without a business need, it must be declared at market value (see margin no. 9 of the SSK and FTA guidelines on the salary statement and section F 2 of the SSK FAQ on the salary statement). Any business trips made must be taken into account as expenses for the value.
- Addition to marginal number 2002 that employer contributions to employees’ childcare costs are part of the relevant salary;
- Clarification of the practice on meals for agogic purposes (reference to case law; margin no. 2075); for meals taken during a care activity (e.g. day-care centres and homes), employers must take into account CHF 3.50 for breakfast, CHF 10 for lunch and CHF 8 for dinner.
- New regulation on the private share for electric company cars and charging stations (margin no. 2079.1); if only the car is purchased for an electric company car but the battery is leased, the private share is to be calculated from the purchase price of the car including the purchase price of the battery (excl. VAT) (0.9% per month as before). The costs of the charging station and its installation borne by the employer must be included in the calculation of the private share.
- Increase in the exemption amount applicable to firefighters’ pay, alignment with the tax regulations (margin no. 2201); the pay of militia firefighters up to the amount of CHF 5300 per year for services in connection with the fulfilment of the core tasks of the fire brigade (exercises, on-call services, courses, inspections and emergency operations for rescue, firefighting, general damage prevention, natural disaster management and the like) is exempt from contributions in accordance with the tax regulations (Art. 24 let. fbis DBG). In contrast, lump-sum allowances for cadres, functional allowances and compensation for administrative work and for services provided voluntarily by the fire brigade are included in the relevant salary.
- Clarification of the usual place of work, in particular for temporary assignments (margin no. 3006.1, 3006.2 and 3017); this concerns employer compensation in which situations this counts as part of the relevant salary and when these are expenses. For the temporary employment sector, this should be an important clarification to be taken into account from 2024 at the latest!
Background: Regular compensation for travelling from the employee’s place of residence to the usual place of work and regular compensation for the usual meals at the place of residence or usual place of work are part of the relevant salary.
The place of work temporarily arranged by the employer away from the place of residence and place of work is not deemed to be the usual place of work. The same applies to constantly changing work locations, for example in the cleaning industry or for travelling salespeople.
However, if a person takes up a new position at a distant place of work, this is deemed to be the usual place of work. In the case of staff leasing, the assignment to a new company is treated as a new employment relationship.
However, if the value or reduction in the value of lunch cheques and other vouchers for restaurants or food deliveries exceeds CHF 180 per month, the amount in excess of this is always deemed to be the relevant salary.Such travel and catering allowances are part of the relevant salary (Art. 9 para. 2 AHVV), unless
- the compensation for the journey to work consists of a free or discounted half-fare travelcard;
- the compensation for the usual meals is only insignificant, is not paid in cash and its value can only be determined with disproportionate administrative effort.
However, if the value or reduction in the value of lunch cheques and other vouchers for restaurants or food deliveries exceeds CHF 180 per month, the amount in excess of this is always deemed to be the relevant salary. (inofficial translation)
- Addition regarding gifts in the form of WIR money, with reference to the jurisdiction (margin no. 2158);
- Minor clarification of the rules on travelling salesmen and similar activities (margin no. 4015 et seq.);
- Restructuring of the regulations on activities in the performing arts and music (no material change; margin no. 4034 et seq.);
- Adjustments due to the new retirement age and reference age for women (margin no. 4094 and entire guidance).
Guidelines on the obligation to be insured (WVP)
I will provide details on the guidelines and the new features in a separate blog.
Guidelines on the payment of AHV, IV and EO contributions (WBB)
“The addendum clarifies the possibility of carrying out employer checks electronically (margin no. 2158.1) and that the limit of CHF 2,300 for low income cannot be proratised (margin no. 2129).
In addition, taking into account the case law of the Federal Supreme Court, the addendum states that the forfeiture periods for the claim for reimbursement only begin to run from the definitive determination of the contributions (margin no. 3074.1) and that the claim for damages expires 10 years after the claim becomes legally binding (margin no. 8078).”
Circular letter on the obligation of gainfully employed persons to pay AHV, IV and EO contributions after reaching the reference age (KSR)
Due to the entry into force of the AHV21 revision, it is worth taking a close look at the explanations on the calculation and validity of the application of the AHV exemption limit. Those affected can notify their employer once a year whether or not they wish to waive the exemption limit. The application of the exemption limit for payments after leaving the company is based on the determination principle.
Circular letter on contributions to compulsory unemployment insurance (KALV)
Adjustments due to the AHV21 revision, the explanations have been adjusted from retirement age to reference age.
Circular letter on maternity compensation and compensation for the other parent (KS MSEAE)
Adjustments due to the new compensation entitlements in the event of the death of a parent from 1 January 2024 and further adjustments to the wording due to marriage for all. For example, the term “paternity leave” has been replaced by the term “leave of the other parent” in the law and in the ordinance, and “paternity compensation” has become “compensation for the other parent”.
For details on the new compensation entitlement, please refer to the separate blog: https://www.zulaufgmbh.ch/en/leave-and-daily-allowances-for-the-surviving-parent-from-1-january-2024/
Guidelines on the affiliation of persons liable to pay contributions (WKB)
In special situations, there was previously no clear regulation as to which compensation fund was responsible for registration and settlement. This will now be resolved with version 2024.