anobag switzerland financial guide

ANobAG in Switzerland: A Practical Guide

December 16, 2022 - Daniel Dreier

Find all the most important information about the ANobAG Swiss social security status for employees of foreign companies in this guide.

The term ANobAG is a designation used for Swiss social security purposes. It is an acronym for the German term Arbeitnehmende ohne beitragspflichtigen Arbeitgeber (employee of an employer that is not required to contribute to Swiss social security).

This designation is given to people who live in Switzerland, but are employed by a company in a country which does not have a social security agreement with Switzerland that governs social security contributions. You receive the ANobAG designation when you register your foreign employment at a Swiss social security office.


The following special rules apply to social security and retirement saving for people with the ANobAG designation:

1. Old age and survivors’ insurance (OASI), disability insurance (DI), and maternity/paternity/military leave insurance (EO)

Basic social old-age insurance and disability insurance is obligatory. You pay the full OASI and DI contributions yourself, based on your income. Your foreign employer is not legally obligated to pay half like Swiss employers are, because there is no social security agreement which requires this.

You are billed directly by the Swiss social security office which you register with. In addition to contributions, you pay an administration fee to the social security office. This fee can be equal to as much as five percent of your contributions.

2. Accident insurance (UVG)

You are required to have occupational accident insurance. Responsibility falls with your foreign employer, but they can appoint you to take out the insurance on their behalf. If your applications for occupational accident insurance are rejected by private insurance companies, you can get help from the Ersatzkasse UVG. This foundation has the mandate of ensuring that all employees in Switzerland get occupational accident insurance.

3. Unemployment insurance (ALV)

As an ANobAG employee, you are required to have Swiss unemployment insurance. You pay the full premiums yourself along with your OASI and DI premiums.

4. Maternity, paternity, and military leave insurance (EO)

This insurance is also obligatory. You pay the full premiums, which are included in your OASI/DI bills.

5. Child benefits

Contributing to the family benefits scheme is obligatory, and you pay contributions to the child benefits scheme out of your own pocket. These are charged along with your social security bill.

6. Pension funds (pillar 2)

You are not obligated to join an occupational pension fund as an ANobAG employee, but you can subscribe to one on a voluntary basis. In that case, you pay the full contributions based on your income out of your own pocket.

If you are unable to find a pension fund which accepts ANobAG employees (through industry association memberships, for example), you can use the SE pension plan offered by The Substitute Occupational Benefit Institution. This allows you to continue building your pension fund benefits (pillar 2) on a tax-deductible basis, and benefit from the disability insurance provided by occupational pension funds.

7. Pillar 3a

As an ANobAG employee, you pay Swiss social security contributions on your foreign salary. This entitles you to use pillar 3a retirement savings accounts, pillar 3a retirement funds, and pillar 3a retirement asset management solutions to save for old-age on a tax-deductible basis.

How much you can pay into the pillar 3a depends on whether or not you choose to subscribe to an occupational pension fund (see point 6). You can find the annual limits for pillar 3a contributions here.

More on this topic:
Personal finance basics for self-employed people in Switzerland

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Editor Daniel Dreier
Daniel Dreier is editor and personal finance expert at
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