The preparation of the salary certificate involves a couple of pitfalls. We have summarized the usual disputed issues in the following blog article.
1. Free transportation between place of residence and place of work (F)
In the case of free of charge commute (provision of a company car) the box „F“ should be ticked. Likewise, the field „F“ must be ticked if the employee is provided with a general season ticket (mainly used for business purposes).
The reimbursement of a Half-Fare travelcard does not have to be certified.
2. Canteen catering / lunch-checks
If the company offers discounted canteen meals or lunch checks, this must be declared using field G. Field G must also be ticked if a field staff member or an employee with similar tasks is paid the (additional) costs for a main meal away from home in the form of expense reimbursement for at least half of the working days. It has an impact on the possible deductions for professional expenses in the employee’s tax return.
3. Benefits of the unemployment fund / daily allowances / Compensation for loss of earnings (maternity, military)
These following benefits must be declared in the salary certificate under paragraph 7 “Other benefits”:
- Daily benefits from health, accident and disability insurance
- Maternity allowances
- Unemployment insurance benefits
- Income compensation „EO“
4. Participation rights
Freely available employee participation (e.g. shares and/or options, etc.) are taxable income and must be declared in the salary certificate under paragraph 5. Also a supplementary sheet with details must be provided to the salary certificate.
This field should indicate the earned taxable income from the employee participation during the calendar year (e.g. shares and/or options, etc.). The taxable salary component is the difference between the market value and the issue price.
5. Child, family and birth allowances
The family allowances must be declared under paragraph 1 in the salary certificate.
If family allowances aren’t paid out by the employer but directly by the compensation fund, a note must be made in the salary statement in paragraph 15 (remarks).
6. Contributions to vocational education and training
In Paragraph 13.3 must be stated all the employer’s actual remuneration for vocational education and training. Not to mention are remunerations, which are paid directly to third parties.
7. Remunerations for commuting to work
If the employee is paid the cost of commuting to work, this amount must be declared under paragraph 2.3. In this case, there is no need to set a cross in field „F“.
8. Expense reimbursements
In the paragraphs 13.1 and 13.2, reimbursements for expenses must be stated (no gross salary component).
- Effective expenses (for receipts or individual case packages)
- Expense allowances (for a certain period of time)
- Expense allowances under an approved expense regulation -> Paragraph 15 (Remarks)
No reimbursement expenses but part of the wage are cost compensation incurred before or after the actual work activity.
Important: In some cantons, such as the canton of Zurich, BYOD allowances (“Bring your own device”) are part of the taxable salary. Such allowances are therefore not comparable with i.e. mobile phone allowances, which are not taxable in a proportionate form.
9. Other remarks
For employees working part-time, a note in paragraph 15 (remarks) is requested but not mandatory.
If an employee owns a company car and works full-time or part-time as a sales representative, the employer must certify the percentage of sales representatives under paragraph 15. More details can be found in the following documents (in german):
The details of the KTG employee contributions are not required.
10. Not to be declared services
In principle, all benefits of the employer are taxable and must be stated in the salary statement. However, there is an exception for some such as for example:
- Half-Fare travelcards
- Reka-Checks up to CHF 600 per year
- Christmas, birthday and other gifts up to CHF 500 per event (does not apply to gifts in cash or compensation)
- Free parking
In this case of gifts exceeding CHF 500, however, the full amount must be stated.
Further information can be found in the „guide for completing the salary statement“ (german only). For example, in the case of fully automated wage statements, the signature can be waived. Where, on the other hand, manually generated salary certificates must be signed.