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I've been reading through the posts on EF re. Frontalier and Quasi-Resident status (esp. those posted by FrankZappa - super useful)... but, if I'm honest, it's all going over the top of my head! Can anyone give me an idiot-proof intro to the difference between Frontalier and Quasi-Resident status (or point me in the direction of a good online resources/another EF-thread)?
About me: I'm a UK citizen starting a new job in Geneva next month. All my income will be from that job, in Geneva, where I will be on a permanent employment contract in the private sector. I will spend the first month living in Geneva itself, but in the longer-term hope to live just across the border in FR where property is (very-slightly) more available and affordable!
Is this (frontalier vs quasi status) something that I should be putting lots of time/energy into understanding now, in advance, or can I 'muddle-through' once I arrive in-country?
What are the implications of the status other than re. income tax? Would I still need to sign-up for health-care insurance in Geneva if I am frontalier/quasi? What about my employer pension scheme - anything to note?
All/any other single-syllable advice would be greatly appreciated!
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Quasi-residents are a subset of frontaliers. I.e. if you're a quasi-resident, you are also a frontalier, but not every frontalier is a quasi-resident.
What makes a frontalier a quasi-resident? Simply having at least 90% of the household income earned in Switzerland. You can find more info, including an Excel sheet to calculate whether you qualify or not on the website of the canton of Geneva: http://ge.ch/impots/formulaires_qr
What are the advantages of being a quasi-resident? You can apply for certain tax-deductions, such as commuting expenses and 3rd pillar pension fund contributions, and some others.
And that's pretty much it. In your case of a single source of income, being work in Geneva, it's pretty clear cut. You would qualify for quasi-resident status when you become a frontalier and you can benefit from these tax deductions (that you can already benefit from while living in Geneva, so QR status only means you don't lose them).
Regarding health insurance, as frontalier (QR or not) you may choose between the French health insurance and the Swiss system. The French health insurance for frontaliers has a price that scales with your income (8% iirc), while the Swiss health insurance does not. So make sure to calculate which is best for you (and include matters such as coverage in the decision since for some border areas in France, it's faster to go to Geneva for medical services than to the nearest French location) and keep in mind that it is a one-time decision (until you leave France).