Pillar 3b

In Switzerland, the term pillar 3b is used to denote voluntary providence and retirement planning which is not tax-privileged and can be accessed without legal restrictions. The term pillar 3b is used by financial services providers to differentiate standard products from tax-privileged pillar 3a products. In a broader use, the pillar 3b category extends to any voluntary, private savings (including savings account balances, stock investments, and cash reserves) which can be accessed at any time, in keeping with contractual limitations.

Because there are no legal stipulations for the pillar 3b, unrestricted providence and retirement planning instruments do not benefit from special deductions for income and wealth taxes like the restricted pillar 3a does.

The term pillar 3b is most often used in connection with providence-based insurance products like term life insurance, permanent life insurance, and voluntary disability insurance. Insurance offers which are labelled as pillar 3b are regular, standard insurance products (in contrast to tax-privileged pillar 3a insurance offers which are subject to special limitations).

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Editor Daniel Dreier
Daniel Dreier is editor and personal finance expert at moneyland.ch.