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Old 12.10.2014, 13:49
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Tax return question

Hi

Apologies if this question has been asked before.

I started work in Switzerland in May this year. By year end I wont have earned over 120k however if i had been here since January 2014 I would have earned over the 120k CHF threshold for filing a tax return. So my questions are:

- Do I have to file a tax return based on the assumption I would have earned over 120k (Jan 2014 - Dec 2014) OR I don't have to file a tax return based on what I have actually earned between May 2014 - Dec 2014 ?

- If I do have to file a tax return can anyone personally recommend someone they have used who is reliable and efficient?

Many Thanks
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Old 12.10.2014, 13:52
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Re: Tax return question

The amount you actually earned, world wide, from 1st January to 31st December is the deciding factor.

Maybe you should spend a few hundred of your huge salary and get some professional advice?

Any qualified Swiss accountant here is good enough for a tax return,
choose the nearest http://tel.local.ch/en/q?what=tax+ac...urich&rid=sZKf
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Old 12.10.2014, 14:03
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Re: Tax return question

If the amount PER months exceeds 10k you will need to file. It's 120k pro rata
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Old 18.12.2014, 13:52
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Re: Tax return question

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The amount you actually earned, world wide, from 1st January to 31st December is the deciding factor.

Maybe you should spend a few hundred of your huge salary and get some professional advice?

Any qualified Swiss accountant here is good enough for a tax return,
choose the nearest http://tel.local.ch/en/q?what=tax+ac...urich&rid=sZKf
Thank you for the info!
Does anyone else have some recommendations on accountants for tax return?
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Old 18.12.2014, 14:43
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Re: Tax return question

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Maybe you should spend a few hundred of your huge salary and get some professional advice?

Any qualified Swiss accountant here is good enough for a tax return,
choose the nearest http://tel.local.ch/en/q?what=tax+ac...urich&rid=sZKf
This isn't my experience. They're all good enough to do a bog-standard job, but anything slightly out of the ordinary and they don't want to know. Or, if they do take it on, they charge a fortune.
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Old 02.01.2015, 22:29
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Re: Tax return question

My advice: call the Steuerverwaltung (TAX people of your Gemeinde) and ask them. Thats free and normally they are very helpful. You may need to be ready to disclose ALL your income (and assets you own). If in doubt, always file a tax return.
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Old 03.01.2015, 13:30
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Re: Tax return question

Make an appointment with your local tax office. Tell them you need help filling in a ax return. Take all your documents with you, they are obliged to help you fill in the return. Just don't expect any advise regarding tax saving options.
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Old 05.01.2015, 17:43
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Re: Tax return question

I assume you are paying tax at source, since everyone else already files a yearly tax return.

When I still paid tax at source I did file my taxes for everything above 120K (which results in an extra bill of a few thousand on top each year), but a former colleague of mine who was making way over 120K and did not know about this recently left the country and just got a stamp from the tax office without having to pay anything. So I would advise anyone to not file the tax return and just put money aside in case you'll have to pay it back after all.
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Old 05.01.2015, 19:05
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Re: Tax return question

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...everything above 120K (which results in an extra bill of a few thousand on top each year)... So I would advise anyone to not file the tax return and just put money aside in case you'll have to pay it back after all.
I believe your advice is not entirely correct. The devil (as always) is in the details. Whether you have to pay extra or actually get money back depends on the average communal tax level in your canton versus the actual communal tax of the town you live in. The tactic suggested by Harrie Nak is only beneficial (and I'm stretching the meaning of the word here) if you live in a high tax area and hope to get lucky and avoid having to pay the correct amount of taxes.

You had to top up because you live(d) in a high(er) tax town than the cantonal average. Someone living in a low tax place will quite likely get money back, sometimes significant amounts!

Talk with a tax advisor, it is entirely possible that you not only don't need to put money aside for the taxes, but that you'll have a second Christmas in the form of getting back some of the taxes paid.
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Old 05.01.2015, 19:30
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Re: Tax return question

I could be wrong (not been through a return myself yet) but heard from colleagues that tax advisors only charge 200-300 for a return. Surely that's money well spent to make sure you get all of your tax deductions, even if you're in a standard situation?
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Old 05.01.2015, 19:34
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Re: Tax return question

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I could be wrong (not been through a return myself yet) but heard from colleagues that tax advisors only charge 200-300 for a return. Surely that's money well spent to make sure you get all of your tax deductions, even if you're in a standard situation?
Thats not for tax advise, thats for filling in a tax return......
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Old 05.01.2015, 23:50
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I believe your advice is not entirely correct. The devil (as always) is in the details. Whether you have to pay extra or actually get money back depends on the average communal tax level in your canton versus the actual communal tax of the town you live in. The tactic suggested by Harrie Nak is only beneficial (and I'm stretching the meaning of the word here) if you live in a high tax area and hope to get lucky and avoid having to pay the correct amount of taxes.

You had to top up because you live(d) in a high(er) tax town than the cantonal average. Someone living in a low tax place will quite likely get money back, sometimes significant amounts!

Talk with a tax advisor, it is entirely possible that you not only don't need to put money aside for the taxes, but that you'll have a second Christmas in the form of getting back some of the taxes paid.
Quite right. On average, people pay more if they do a tax return, but it's only on average. It doesn't only depend on the communal tax, but also on your own specific circumstances such as what you deduct, whether you're married, etc, etc. In our case we get quite a bit back after filling in the tax return.

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My advice: call the Steuerverwaltung (TAX people of your Gemeinde) and ask them. Thats free and normally they are very helpful. You may need to be ready to disclose ALL your income (and assets you own). If in doubt, always file a tax return.
At least in Zurich, you don't get a choice. I asked whether I could file one when I earned less than 120k and I was not allowed to do so. I was worrying about it, but then as soon as I went over 120k in a year, the tax return turned up automatically all by itself with no intervention on my part. There are, I believe other triggers though, such as owning property or being married to a Swiss.

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If the amount PER months exceeds 10k you will need to file. It's 120k pro rata
Are you sure? I had over 10k loads of times in individual months. I never was permitted to file a tax return (though I would have loved to) until the first time I made over 120k per year.

Last edited by 3Wishes; 06.01.2015 at 00:03. Reason: merging successive posts
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