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Old 07.08.2007, 14:17
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EU passport but Living in CH, contract in UK

Help!

My wife starts her new job in Zug next week and the kids and I are moving over with her. My wife's employer has got her a work permit and residency permits for us as her dependents.

I am currently working for a British local authority under contract through an umbrella company. My project assignment is at a critical stage and I should stay to see it through, we could really do with the money as the move to Switzerland is certainly going to hammer our income. The council cannot rehire me through a Swiss company as this would be in breach of their contract rules and procedures (Can only use EU firms) but I can still work through my umbrella co.

From what I have read on here and from other sources, I need a contract with a Swiss employer that will apply for my work permit and handle my payroll and taxation. The Swiss employer would provide my services to the British umbrella company that I am currently with, who in turn, will continue to bill the council for my work. I of course will be flying between CH and UK each week and paying for two middlemen. Am I right?

I don't have the cash assets to start a Gmbh and the contract should be finished by March or sooner.

I do not want to work illegally, risk deportment or put my wife's career in jeopardy in any way. What options do I have for finishing my project here in the UK and having some money left over in my pay packet to make it worthwhile?
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Old 07.08.2007, 14:26
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Re: EU passport but Living in CH, contract in UK

Why would you need to be re-hired?

Whether it is something you can do from Switzerland or in the UK, can you not continue as you are and complete a UK tax form next April, being paid in the UK, although your address may be in Switzerland?
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Old 07.08.2007, 14:29
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Re: EU passport but Living in CH, contract in UK

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Help!

My wife starts her new job in Zug next week and the kids and I are moving over with her. My wife's employer has got her a work permit and residency permits for us as her dependents.

I am currently working for a British local authority under contract through an umbrella company. My project assignment is at a critical stage and I should stay to see it through, we could really do with the money as the move to Switzerland is certainly going to hammer our income. The council cannot rehire me through a Swiss company as this would be in breach of their contract rules and procedures (Can only use EU firms) but I can still work through my umbrella co.

From what I have read on here and from other sources, I need a contract with a Swiss employer that will apply for my work permit and handle my payroll and taxation. The Swiss employer would provide my services to the British umbrella company that I am currently with, who in turn, will continue to bill the council for my work. I of course will be flying between CH and UK each week and paying for two middlemen. Am I right?

I don't have the cash assets to start a Gmbh and the contract should be finished by March or sooner.

I do not want to work illegally, risk deportment or put my wife's career in jeopardy in any way. What options do I have for finishing my project here in the UK and having some money left over in my pay packet to make it worthwhile?
If you declare Switzerland as the centre of your life which you will be doing defacto by bringing your entire family with you then you will indeed need to have some form of Swiss organisation involved. However, there is no real problem with working overseas and having yourself setup as a sole trader. In this way you form your own company Peter Smith consulting and bill the company in the UK for your services. A GmbH is just a route to make the whole thing more tax efficient. Your situation though is rather complicated seeing as you are effectively not working in Switzerland at all and I guess you will be looking for shall we say a "proper job" when your contract ends.

Your Work permit is not a problem you go into the Gemeinde and ask for one...

Now if you are wanting all this to be done in the most tax efficient manner then PM me.
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Old 08.08.2007, 11:23
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Re: EU passport but Living in CH, contract in UK

Richard, since our PM conversation yesterday my current UK umbrella company has told me that they will not be able to subcontract me as a self employed Swiss resident. The plan is to register as self employed in CH and working in both CH and UK. I would bill a UK umbrella company who in turn bill my UK client. However, I need a UK umbrella company that is willing to subcontract a Swiss resident. My UK local government client cannot be billed directly by a non-EU company.

Anyone know of a UK umbrella or multi-national umbrella that could do this?
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Old 08.08.2007, 14:20
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Re: EU passport but Living in CH, contract in UK

Moabman, sorry - I don't know any of agents but I wanted to raise a potential red flag before you proceed too much further.

I'm under the impression that in order to be a sole trader you have to have more than 3(??) clients at the time you declare yourself to be "self employed".

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Re: Sole trader..... You also run into potential difficulties with the AHV guys if you do not have multiple customers so a shop or carpenter works fine but an IT contractor with a 12 month contract with UBS does not
From Help for Freelancers link: Help for Businesses/Freelancers in CH
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Old 08.08.2007, 14:52
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Re: EU passport but Living in CH, contract in UK

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Richard, since our PM conversation yesterday my current UK umbrella company has told me that they will not be able to subcontract me as a self employed Swiss resident. The plan is to register as self employed in CH and working in both CH and UK. I would bill a UK umbrella company who in turn bill my UK client. However, I need a UK umbrella company that is willing to subcontract a Swiss resident. My UK local government client cannot be billed directly by a non-EU company.

Anyone know of a UK umbrella or multi-national umbrella that could do this?
Sorry don't know of any off hand anymore. I did not of one and can check but am almost certain they went out of business due to changes in the law this year. So the next question for your umbrella is can they accept bills for your services from a Swiss company. Ie can you be an employee of a Swiss company and bill them?
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Old 08.08.2007, 14:54
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Re: EU passport but Living in CH, contract in UK

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Moabman, sorry - I don't know any of agents but I wanted to raise a potential red flag before you proceed too much further.

I'm under the impression that in order to be a sole trader you have to have more than 3(??) clients at the time you declare yourself to be "self employed".

From Help for Freelancers link: Help for Businesses/Freelancers in CH
Yes you are quite correct, however. This is all very dependent on the circumstances. In this case the contract is with an overseas company and there is no way that the Swiss authorities can impose employment conditions nor can the AHV guys tell him to go get a job with the company instead as that would mean moving overseas, ie leaving Switzerland and not making any contributions to anything...
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Old 09.08.2007, 13:03
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Re: EU passport but Living in CH, contract in UK

I had a meeting with my local HM Revenue & Customs office and during the meeting they referred to an expert from HMR&C Residency Office. I was told that I can continue to fly back to the UK and work and my UK income will be taxed by HMR&C as usual at source. My payroll and tax would be processed by my UK umbrella company as usual.

If I work less than 91-days in the UK, I will lose my personal tax allowances. I was told that Swiss tax on my income would be likely but the UK would get the first share of it as the work was done and paid for in the UK.

There is a dual taxation agreement between CH and EU. I think that this means if my tax in Switzerland is higher than the tax I already paid in the UK, I only have to pay the difference to the Swiss. If my UK tax is lower, I don't pay any more tax and I don't get a refund of the difference.

Is it possible for me to lose my Swiss B permit if I travel back to the UK each week to work?

Is there a limitation on the number of days spent outside Switzerland in a year or in one period that triggers an automatic cancellation of my permit?
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Old 09.08.2007, 13:22
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Re: EU passport but Living in CH, contract in UK

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I had a meeting with my local HM Revenue & Customs office and during the meeting they referred to an expert from HMR&C Residency Office. I was told that I can continue to fly back to the UK and work and my UK income will be taxed by HMR&C as usual at source. My payroll and tax would be processed by my UK umbrella company as usual.

If I work less than 91-days in the UK, I will lose my personal tax allowances. I was told that Swiss tax on my income would be likely but the UK would get the first share of it as the work was done and paid for in the UK.

There is a dual taxation agreement between CH and EU. I think that this means if my tax in Switzerland is higher than the tax I already paid in the UK, I only have to pay the difference to the Swiss. If my UK tax is lower, I don't pay any more tax and I don't get a refund of the difference.

Is it possible for me to lose my Swiss B permit if I travel back to the UK each week to work?

Is there a limitation on the number of days spent outside Switzerland in a year or in one period that triggers an automatic cancellation of my permit?
Hi again, yep I can see your issues and interest in a solution. There is indeed a bilateral agreement between UK and CH but be warned they have just renegotiated it and your HMR&C will be(is) talking about the old agreement. I am not sure what changes have occurred in the new agreement nor do I know off hand from when they will apply.

As you are moving here with your wife and family the Swiss will view your centre of life as being here. Theoretically you can lose your permit if you are working for a company outside of Switzerland and living and working there too, after 180 days out of the country. As you will be frequently coming back then there will be no problem.

By the way as an aside... I actually calculated that you can claim practically your entire salary(80%) tax free working out of Switzerland if you can find this UK umbrella company that will deal with a Swiss company... The remaining 20% will attract minimal tax... It would in fact be possible to lose it all in expenses, but then you would not have a salary which would not work... IF, big IF, you can find the EU based company to charge against then you really are better off working out of Switzerland.
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