Almost every country in the world requires a work permit for foreigners wishing to undertake gainful employment. This is usually given only if the person has an employment contract and the employer can prove that no labour is available in the country.
The Federal Department of Foreign Affairs provides useful information for Swiss citizens seeking employment and working abroad.
Bilateral agreements between Switzerland and the EU provide Swiss citizens with the right to work and reside in EU/EFTA countries. You can contact Swiss representations abroad (embassy and consulate) to find out about the procedure for your destination country.
The Federal Department of Foreign Affairs website also provides information on the free movement of persons on its web page about working abroad.
The European Commission’s European Employment Services network (EURES) facilitates worker mobility within the EU/EFTA. The EURES portal publishes job vacancies in all EU/EFTA countries. EURES advisors can also give you advice on how to prepare an application in accordance with the practices of your destination country. Information on professional mobility in the EU/EFTA is provided by the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs.
If you go abroad to work for a Swiss employer, you can remain insured with the OASI compensation fund under certain conditions. The conditions vary depending on your country of destination. The Federal Social Insurance Office provides more information on the specific conditions.
Conditions regarding health insurance also vary according to your destination country. The Federal Office of Public Health provides information on health insurance on their web page for posted workers.
You will generally pay taxes in your host country when you leave Switzerland. It may be the case you will continue to pay certain Swiss taxes in some situations, e.g. if you own property or securities in Switzerland. You may also be subject to tax if you occasionally engage in gainful employment in Switzerland. Switzerland has concluded double taxation agreements to ensure that you do not have to pay the same taxes twice.
Information on ch.ch on going to live abroad, including details on health insurance
FDFA guide to working abroad
SwissCommunity guide to working abroad
Posted workers: social insurance and health insurance
The FDFA provides dossiers on the most important destination countries on the topic of living and working abroad.
The State Secretariat for International Finance is responsible for questions on double taxation.
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