Coronavirus Switzerland: Extension of short-time working compensation for affected companies

David Gisin
David Gisin
Direktor, Treuhand
Coronavirus Switzerland: Extension of short-time working compensation for affected companies

The Federal Council is making an additional CHF 32 billion available to cushion the economic consequences. The Finance Delegation of the Federal Assembly (FinDel) will decide on this at the beginning of next week. What measures will follow?

This is an follow up to the former Blog Post and after today's media conference: The Federal Council is making an additional 32 billion Swiss francs available to cushion the economic consequences. The Finance Delegation of the Federal Assembly (FinDel) will decide on this at the beginning of next week. What measures will follow?

Liquidity support for companies through guaranteed COVID bridging loans

To ensure liquidity, all SMEs concerned (sole proprietorships, partnerships, legal entities) can receive bridging loans from their principal bank. The Federal Council will set up a guarantee programme totalling 20 billion. The aim here is to ensure that companies can quickly and easily obtain credit amounts of up to 10% of turnover or a maximum of CHF 20 million. Amounts of up to CHF 500,000 are to be paid out immediately by the banks and 100% guaranteed by the federal government. Amounts in excess of this should be 85% guaranteed by the Confederation and require a brief bank examination. The credit amounts of up to CHF 0.5 million should cover over 90% of the companies affected by COVID. From Thursday, 26 March 2020, SMEs should be able to take advantage of the bridging loans, according to Federal Councillor Ueli Maurer.

  • Interest-free deferral of social security contributions
  • Liquidity buffer in the tax area and for federal government suppliers based on the extension of payment deadlines
  • Legal standstill pursuant to the Federal Act on Debt Collection and Bankruptcy (SchKG) from 19 March to 4 April 2020

Extension and simplification of short-time working

The following groups of persons can now also apply for short-time working:

  • Employees in fixed-term employment relationships and for temporary work
  • Apprentices
  • Employer-like employees, e.g. shareholders of a GmbH, who work as salaried employees in the company for remuneration

Compensation for loss of earnings for self-employed persons

Self-employed persons who suffer loss of earnings due to official measures to combat the coronavirus will be compensated, unless compensation or insurance benefits already exist. Compensation is provided for the following cases:

  • School closures
  • Medically prescribed quarantine
  • Closure of an independently managed publicly accessible business

The compensation is regulated in accordance with the income compensation regulations and is paid as a daily allowance. This corresponds to 80 percent of income and amounts to a maximum of 196 francs per day. The number of daily allowances for self-employed persons in quarantine or with care duties is limited to 10 and 30 respectively. The AHV compensation funds are responsible for checking entitlement and paying out the benefit.

Further information will certainly be published by the compensation offices in the next few days.

 

Further simplifications:

  • The waiting period for short-time work compensation will be abolished. This means that employers will no longer have to contribute to the loss of working hours.
  • In addition, employees will no longer have to reduce their overtime before they can benefit from short-time compensation.

Important to note: it is now possible to advance wage payments due via short-time compensation. Further details can be read here and we will be happy to offer you support in the further procedure for your personal situation.