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Individuals of Swiss or foreign nationality are subject to income tax on their worldwide income if they are domiciled in Switzerland, resident in Switzerland without gainful activity for more than 90 days or if they conduct a gainful activity for more than 30 days.

Taxable income and rates
Personal taxes in Switzerland are levied at the federal and cantonal/communal levels. Tax rates vary at the cantonal/communal levels. The tax burden on individuals is considered moderate. Swiss tax rates progress gradually, and the top rates are modest by international standards.

The maximum federal tax rate is 11.5% for income over CHF 843,600 (married persons). Income tax is levied by the cantons at rates up to approximately 30%. Therefore a maximum tax rate of approximately 40% may apply (federal, cantonal/communal tax). In most cantons, the maximum tax rate is substantially lower than 40%. For example, the lowest tax rate is approximately 19.5% (federal, cantonal/communal income tax) in the Canton of Schwyz (Wollerau). A married person with two children having gross employment income of CHF 100,000 pays federal and cantonal/communal income taxes of 5%-12%, depending on the location of residence.

Determination of taxable income
Federal income tax applies to all income derived from compensation for work performed and from capital (both real and movable property). Gross income from Swiss capital is taxable; income from foreign capital is taxed only after deduction of foreign withholding taxes. Capital gains and capital appreciation derived from the sale or realisation of assets, through the increased value of tangible and intangible assets of a firm, or through lottery prizes are subject to tax. Gains realised on the sale of securities or real property generally are not subject to federal tax.

All cantons levy taxes on personal income with deductions that vary from the federal deductions. Cantons also levy a separate capital gains tax on the sale of real property, but no canton levies taxes on personal capital gains from movable property. Cantons tax at source the wages of foreigners working temporarily in Switzerland (i.e. the employer must deduct the tax from the salary and remit it on behalf of the foreign employee to the tax authorities). Municipal tax is based on a multiplier of cantonal tax.

Special expatriate tax regime
Expatriates working in Switzerland pay the same tax as Swiss nationals. However, certain special employment costs may be deducted from the tax base.

Capital taxes
There is no federal tax on individuals' net wealth, although each canton levies a small tax on capital exceeding specific thresholds that vary from canton to canton. Capital includes among others real property and the value of life-insurance policies, net of outstanding debt.


Source: Deloitte

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