Fiscal aspects FOR STARTUPS AND SME

Taxes for companies and founders in Switzerland

Switzerland offers companies and private individuals an extremely attractive tax system. In the following, we present the main cornerstones of the Swiss tax system.

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Taxation of partnerships and corporations

In the following overview you will find out what companies and entrepreneurs need to pay attention to in the context of taxation.

Sole proprietorships, general partnerships and limited partnerships are not legal entities and are therefore not taxable as companies. Each owner of a sole proprietorship, a general partnership or a limited partnership pays tax on private and business income as well as on private and business assets as a whole.

To what extent is the company affected?

Companies generate profits. These profits are taxed at the owner's personal tax rate. A separate tax return is not required.

Taxes paid by sole proprietors or partnerships cannot be deducted from taxable net income either by the Confederation or in the cantons.

Property tax must be paid on the assets.

The correct differentiation between private and business expenses is also necessary for e.g. business trips, company cars, restaurant and travel expenses, work clothes, further training, etc.

To what extent is the entrepreneur affected?

For sole proprietors, the income consists of all income from the company (profit, salary, interest) and other income.

This total income must be taxed at the federal, cantonal and municipal levels.

The private and business assets of sole proprietors and partnerships are only subject to cantonal and municipal taxes, but not to direct federal tax. This also applies to general partnerships and limited partnerships, where each partner pays personal tax on his or her share of income and assets.

With the taxation of PLC and LLC one must differentiate clearly between private and business. You should pay particular attention to the following points.

To what extent is the company affected?

Companies generate profits. These profits are taxed at the corporate tax rate.

Capital taxes are paid on the company's equity. A separate tax return is prepared for the company.

When a company successfully closes a financial year, it generates a profit. In principle, shareholders are entitled to a share of the profits.

The dividend is the part of the net profit that a corporation distributes to its shareholders.

If the company's profits are not distributed as a dividend, the tax rate is initially lower than for a partnership.

To what extent are entrepreneurs affected?

In contrast to partnerships, there is a clear separation between private and business in the case of stock corporations and limited liability companies. LLC and PLC are taxed as companies, shareholders and partners as private individuals.

The shareholders / partners receive corresponding dividends. These dividends must be taxed by the shareholders / partners as capital income.

If a shareholder / partner owns more than 10 % of the company shares, only approx. 50 % (cantonal differences) of the distribution must be taxed.

On the other hand, the clear separation leads to economic double taxation. This is the case with dividend payments.

Nowadays, tailor-made tax and legal advice is particularly important for SMEs. In order to be prepared for any tax and legal issues, professional assistance is recommended.

Companies have to pay taxes on the profit made at the end of the year.

The taxable profit is determined in the submitted tax return. It is therefore important that all income and all expenses are stated in the tax return, so that the taxable profit is kept as low as possible.

In addition, there are numerous special cases and special deduction possibilities that must be taken into account and lead to further tax savings.

A good understanding of tax law can save you a lot of money. Our tax advisors are very familiar with the tax laws. They will be happy to optimise your annual accounts and prepare your tax return.

In addition to the necessary basic training, our specialists in the tax and legal departments have further specializations. Thus, our lawyers and tax specialists guarantee comprehensive advice. The comprehensive advice is supplemented by specialists in the various fields.

Our tips for company founders

Your business idea is unique. Nevertheless, there are a few points that all founders should consider carefully. Here you will find our assistance:

Develop a business strategy

A business idea is important. But only the right strategy defines which steps you should take and when. With the Canvas method you can track down your goals.

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Create a business plan

The business plan contains everything that can make your company successful. With a serious business plan you reduce the risks significantly. Use our tips for this purpose.

more information

Consider all tax aspects

Depending on the type of company you want to set up, you will benefit from other tax aspects. Partnerships are taxed differently from corporations.

more information

Compare insurances

Concluding the right insurance contract can save your company from bankruptcy if the worst comes to the worst. In this way, you can find the insurance policies that suit your requirements.

more information

Pension fund withdrawal

With the step into self-employment, you may also wonder whether you can withdraw your pension fund shares in advance. Our instructions will help you.

more information

Do your own accounting or outsource it?

If you are self-employed, you must keep track of all your expenses and income in order to be able to provide information on this at all times. This task is often too challenging for many company founders. Find out here whether it makes more sense for you to outsource your accounting or to do it by yourself with the appropriate software.

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