HR update innovations 2023/2024

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  • Insight
  • 10 minute read
  • 19/12/23

Our newsletter is intended to inform and provide general information. The relevant laws, ordinances, regulations, etc. apply and should be consulted.


Swiss salary certificate and Guideline to complete the salary certificate

An updated version of the Guideline for completing the salary certificate and the associated questions and answers (FAQ) for 2024 have been published. The guidelines only contain an addition regarding energy costs for private use of a business vehicle, the structural adjustment to expenses and an addition to the declaration of loss of income compensation. The 2023 Guideline to complete the salary certificate is still relevant for the drafting and issuing of the salary certificate (version 01.01.2023).

Home office days

Home office days still do not have to be declared in the Swiss salary certificate. However, especially in an international context, especially in the case of cross-border commuters and international weekly commuters, we still recommend documenting the travel patterns for the employees (e.g. travel calendar). On the one hand, this will have to be submitted to the tax authorities in certain cases (see "Telework: Supplementary agreement to the double taxation agreement (DTA) with France"), and on the other hand, you as the employer are obliged to correctly determine the correct social security regime for your employees. This data must also be available for the avoidance of double taxation and exemption of foreign workdays for withholding tax purposes. We will be happy to provide you with individual support on this topic.

Teleworking: Supplementary agreement to the double taxation agreement (DTA) with France

From 1 January 2023, French cross-border commuters were already allowed to work up to 40% of their time from home in France in the form of teleworking by means of mutual agreements, without this having any impact on withholding tax or cross-border commuter status in Switzerland. These mutual agreements will now remain in force until 31 December 2024 at the latest or until they are replaced by the new supplementary agreement to the double taxation agreement with France. The Federal Council adopted the dispatch on the approval and implementation of the supplementary agreement on 22 November 2023. The new supplementary agreement also provides for a maximum percentage of 40% of working hours per calendar year to be spent working from home.

Among other things, the new supplementary agreement provides for an exchange of information between the two countries. This has already been the case until now, but what is new is that the number of home office days or the home office rate as a percentage must be disclosed. Employers must provide this information to the tax office so that this can be transmitted to the respective tax authorities in the other country. A corresponding travel calendar will therefore be essential for these employees.

New cross-border commuter tax agreement with Italy

The new cross-border commuter tax agreement, which entered into force on 17 July 2023, will apply from 1 January 2024. This will entail some changes for the affected employers in the cantons of Ticino, Graubünden and Valais, such as the distinction between "existing" and "new" cross-border commuters. This must be determined by the employers.

The "existing" cross-border commuters are those who have already worked in the aforementioned cantons between 31 December 2018 and 17 July 2023. These cross-border commuters will continue to be fully taxed in Switzerland at the normal withholding tax rates instead of the F source tax tariff.

"New" cross-border commuters are those who are employed in Switzerland from 17 July 2023 at the earliest and whose place of residence in Italy is less than 20 kilometres from the border. In contrast to "existing" cross-border commuters, only 80% of their Swiss income will be taxed in Switzerland. This is done by means of new tariff codes (R, S, T, U and V). They are also taxed in Italy, which avoids double taxation.

It is still unclear whether there will also be corresponding forms (employer's certificate of non-return days) for the maximum 45 non-return days, similar to France. It is also advisable to document the travelling days in this regard. Cross-border commuters can telework a maximum of 25 per cent of their employment without this leading to a change in cross-border commuter status under the 2020 crossborder commuter agreement.

Payments in kind

The amounts relating to the valuation of meals and accommodation for self-employed persons remain unchanged for 2024.

Withholding tax rates 2024

The Federal Tax Administration (FTA) published the new withholding tax rates (direct federal tax) for the 2024 tax year on 16 October 2023. Various deductions will be slightly increased as a result of cold progression:

New (from 2024)
To date (up to and including 2023)
Two-earner deduction min. CHF 8’500
max. CHF 13’900             
min. CHF 8’300
max. CHF 13’600
Child deduction CHF 6’700 CHF 6’600
Married couple deduction CHF 2’800 CHF 2’700
Deduction from the tax amount per child CHF 259 CHF 255

In addition, the median value of effective salary income will be increased from CHF 5’675 to CHF 5’725 per month. This is based on the average median value of dependent income per person (men and women). The cantons are free to determine the rate for the rate-determining income of the other spouse for rate code C.

Social security insurances

Teleworking: "Framework Agreement"

The "Framework Agreement" was drawn up at European level together including Switzerland, as working from home has now become established, and is the successor to the flexible application of the subordination rules that applied until 30 June 2023. It allows cross-border commuters to work from home between 25% and up to 49.9% without changing their social security status - but only under certain conditions:

  • The countries concerned (employer's country of domicile and employee's country of residence) must both have signed the Framework Agreement
  • The cross-border commuters concerned must be covered by the Agreement on the Free Movement of Persons or the EFTA Convention
  • The definition of "teleworking" must be fulfilled, i.e. the home office must involve activities that can be carried out from any location using information technology
  • Employees may only have one employer or several, but then in the same member state

If these criteria are not met, the regular EU Regulation or the EFTA Agreement will apply.

If the requirements are met and both the employer and the employee agree to the application, a corresponding A1 certificate is required, which must be applied for by the employer.

Further information can be found in our blog and of course we are also happy to advise you on your individual cases.

Contact us

Gradual increase in the retirement age for women

The reform to stabilise old-age and survivors' insurance (AHV 21) comes into force on 1 January 2024. The implementation of the gradual increase in the retirement age - now referred to as the "reference age" - for women by three months in each case will therefore begin on 1 January 2025 for those born in 1961. Other areas of insurance, such as occupational pensions, will also be affected. Employers should therefore examine what action still needs to be taken in this regard. This may include, for example, revising the employee regulations or handbook or making technical adjustments to the salary processing system.

Continuing to work after reaching the reference age

If the employee continues to work after reaching the reference age of 65, it will be possible to waive the pensioner's allowance of currently CHF 16’800 from 2024. This is to close possible contribution gaps and improve the AHV pension (up to the maximum pension). Employees must notify their employer of the waiver at the latest when they receive their first salary after reaching the reference age.

Parental leave in case of death

If one parent dies immediately after giving birth, the other parent will be entitled to longer maternity or paternity leave from 1 January 2024. Specifically, this means that if the mother dies within 14 weeks of giving birth, the father or the mother's wife is entitled to 14 weeks' leave in addition to the two weeks' paternity leave. This leave must be taken without interruption immediately after the death. If work is resumed during this period, the remaining entitlement is forfeited. Conversely, if the father or the mother's wife dies within six months of the birth of the child, the mother is entitled to an additional two weeks' leave in accordance with the terms of paternity leave.

BVG: Increase in minimum interest rate

The minimum interest rate for occupational benefits insurance will be increased by 0.25% to 1.25% as of 1 January 2024. This was decided by the Federal Council at its meeting on 1 November 2023.

Occupational pension plan limits (BVG)

The AHV/IV pensions (maximum annual AHV pension: CHF 29,400) - and therefore also the BVG limits - will remain unchanged for 2024.

Share max.
AHV pension
Pillar 2    
Coordination deduction CHF 25’725 7/8
Entry threshold CHF 22’050 3/4
Insured minimum wage CHF 3’675 1/8
Upper BVG limit salary CHF 88’200 300%
Max. insurable salary CHF 882’000 3000%
3rd pillar    
Max. Tax deduction (with / without 2nd pillar)

CHF 7’056

CHF 35’280



On our own behalf

Outsourcing of payroll services

For our outsourcing of payroll services, we can present the ISAE 3402 Type II certificate in accordance with the "International Standard of Assurance Engagements". The annual report is available in July of the following year. We are happy to provide the current 2022 report on request.

With this certificate, we provide you as the responsible party and decision-maker with the assurance that our payroll outsourcing services have an adequate internal control system and that all relevant business processes are monitored. This audit report confirms that we have established all necessary controls and implemented them over a defined period of time.

Provide your auditors with our ISAE attestation. This can support the planning of the audit and have a positive impact on costs, as audit procedures in connection with outsourced payroll accounting can be reduced. We will be happy to send you the document on request and answer any questions you may have.

On-site support

If you need support with payroll processing in the event of short or long-term absences such as maternity/ paternity/carer's leave, illness, accident or fluctuation, we will be happy to provide you with onsite or remote support. Depending on the job profile, we will provide you with the right person from our team of payroll experts. As part of a staff leasing programme, they will take care of payroll processing on site and support your payroll managers as required.

Abacus payroll software

If you use Abacus Business Software for payroll accounting, we can show you how you can make your payroll processing more efficient, for example with suitable wage types, tables, automation or interfaces.

Individual advice on all aspects of employer obligations

We are always up-to-date with the latest developments in the areas of tax, social security, immigration, labour law, etc. and are happy to support you with questions on individual issues. For example, we are happy to deal with your special cases relating to home office, teleworking or workation in an international context and show you the associated employer obligations. Or perhaps you have already asked yourself whether your expense regulations are still up to date - we are also happy to help you with this.

Contact us

Marlene Oswald

Leader Payroll Services East, PwC Switzerland

+41 58 792 63 06


Stephen Turley

Leader Employment Solutions, PwC Switzerland

+41 58 792 14 59