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Old 09.07.2018, 10:59
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Re: Advice/opinions please about RAV vs UK contract work, post-redundancy

You will be dual tax resident, if you do less than 45 days work in the UK & don't have accommodation available you could easily not be UK tax resident as you have zero ties with the UK. The Statutory definition of UK residence is clear on this.

The RAV only pay out if your earnings ex holiday pay are below 69.9%/79.79% of your insured salary, earn 0.01 happen too much & you don't get a payout that month, different months have a different no of RAV days. You still need to apply for jobs.

I did work in CH for UK clients & was part time self employed when with the RAV on days involved.

RAV translate earnings into days, so 15 days at 150% earnings would be full employment from their POV, even 1 day of pay above 70/80% is 100% working for them.

I don't think the Swiss will be happy if your Director of a limited company paying yourself a salary, they would not accept this if it was a Swiss co.

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Sorry people, a long post, but I’d really appreciate the benefit of your experience. and any advice available re my current situation, and a decision I need to make. An answer to even one of the questions at the bottom, or a general comment, would be great. Or if you know an expert adviser, that would be good too. Thanks in advance.

  • C Permit holder, in CH nearly 10 years, working for the same company. I've exactly 4 1/2 years to go until official retirement age.
  • At end of 2018, my department relocates from Zurich to Bern. We have the choice of relocating to the new place OR accepting a redundancy package. I’ll probably take redundancy as I’m very bored with the job and don’t fancy the hassle of relocation. It’s not over-generous, but would tide me over for a while, plus of course there’s the RAV. At my age, there’s not a good chance of finding another similar position in Switzerland but I reckon I could get by with a bit of freelancing.
The Complication:
  • I've been offered an opportunity to join a reputable consultancy firm back in the UK. I know the guys, and it’s not a rip-off.
  • Work would be on a contract basis, and would allow me to work flexibly — probably between 10 and 15 days per month. Their small team of contractor-consultants operate as limited companies.
  • Daily rates are about 700 UKP (920 CHF)to me before tax. This is about 50% more than I get at present as a salary in CH (based on actual days worked).
  • CH residency is no problem for them and I can work remotely as much as I want, with the client’s approval. But I’d be in the UK enough to mean I’d be classed as UK-resident for tax purposes.
The Dilemma:

Should I take the UK opportunity or not? I can see benefits and downsides to both options. To help decide, I’m trying to find answers to these questions, which is where I would value the experience and knowledge of the forum:

Tax / pension etc:
  1. I’ll be liable for UK tax as a UK limited company. Will the Swiss authorities be OK with this, as long as I can demonstrate ongoing financial self-sufficiency while living here?
  2. Does the double taxation agreement between UK and CH mean I won't pay CH tax on these earnings?
  3. The UK contract means higher earnings but I'll lose some of the safeguards of a salary + the pension contributions, employment insurance etc. Am I still able to make voluntary contributions to maintain my Pillar 1 state pension or is it forever frozen at current level if I'm self-employed?
  4. Am I able to top up Pillar 2 pension voluntarily?
  5. Self-employment doesn't give RAV-style protection, but is there any way of buying this protection through special contributions?
  6. Opinion please -- with all these extra payments / loss of protection, is self-employment really worth it financially for someone within 5 years of retirement?

  7. If the UK contract offer exists when I cut my ties with my present CH employer, am I still able to register with the RAV? Reason for asking is it might take a while to establish a steady income. I’m wondering if I can register with the RAV but tell them about the UK opportunity and declare any odd days worked so that they can deduct the rate from any RAV entitlement?
  8. Assume I don’t register with the RAV and throw myself into the UK contract work. But after 6 months say, decide that it’s a waste of time because there isn’t enough work, or the travelling is too exhausting. What is the RAV’s attitude? Will they treat the UK work like they would CH work, and say I was wrong to resign voluntarily, thereby delaying my entitlement to RAV payments?
  9. Will they evaluate RAV payment based partly on the failed UK work, even if I earned very little? In other words, would the value of my much better-paid current CH work be diluted even though I’ve been paying into the system for nearly 10 years to protect my earnings?

Once again, any assistance would be appreciated. PMs are fine too, though if it's useful info for others, it might be better to post here on the forum.
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