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Military Service Exemption Tax

Swiss men who do not perform military or civilian service are required to pay Military Service Exemption Tax.

When do you start paying the tax and when can you stop?

The length of time that you pay the tax depends on the general length of military service. You are liable to the tax from the beginning of the year in which you reach the age of 19 and must continue to pay, if deemed unfit to perform military service or not assigned to a military unit, until the end of the year in which you reach the age of 37. During this period, if you are unfit for service, you must pay the annual tax at most 11 times.
If you perform civil defence service, you are entitled to a deduction from the annual military service exemption tax. Every day worked for civil defence reduces the military service exemption tax by 4 per cent.

How much is the Military Service Exemption Tax?

The Military Service Exemption Tax amounts to 3% of your taxable income for the purpose of direct federal tax each year (see your tax return), or a minimum of CHF 400.

Refund

If you subsequently complete your service duties in full, you are entitled to claim a refund of the exemption tax. This right lapses five years after the duty to perform service ceases to apply. The application for a refund must be sent to the relevant cantonal office responsible for Military Service Exemption Tax. No interest is paid on refunded tax.

Application for a refund - cantonal office