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Old 07.03.2017, 18:25
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PLEASE HELP:Starting a Sole Proprietorship Company

Hello everybody,

It is the first time I am posting a question on this forum, I have seen similar questions already and reading them and the replies has already helped me a lot, but since there were still unclarified issues for me, I decided to post them myself and maybe somebody can help me.

Ok, I am new to Switzerland, moved here about a year ago. I live in Neuchatel at the moment and have a B permit. I'm an Interior Designer from London and since I moved here I have been trying to find a job in Interior Design field but as you know, to get a job in Switzerland, most of the Companies ask for fluency in at least 2 of their national languages depending on the canton. Well, I have been on an intensive French course for the last 6 months, I am happy with the results but I think its very clear that nobody can be fluent enough in 6 months to start an actual job in a French speaking company. ok sorry for making the story long. Anyway having finished the French course now and seeing the job market which to be honest, there are not job opportunities for Interior Designers here, I decided to start up my own business and for that, thanks to this forum and other sources of information, I understood that the best option for me as a starter is to go with the Solo Proprietorship option. Now my questions:

I already know the basic rules like ok if my annual turnover exceed 100,000 CHF I should register it with the Commercial Register office and the need for accounting Company if it exceeds 500,000 CHF.

I also have been to the Caisse Cantonale Neuchateloise de Compensation to get some more information on how to start, BUT they made me a little confused. The lady whom I spoke to asked for my Business Card...I told here, there is no company yet so there is no business card. Then she asked me where my office is...how many employees I already have...what is my revenue of the company at the moment...and many other questions that made me think maybe I'm in the wrong place, because the information she was asking for was more like somebody already has a business with employees and solid revenue and an office and everything!! How is it working really?? Is it like you start a business without registering and then you register it only when you feel like ohhh this is getting serious or what??

---So can somebody explain to me how does their system work?

---Is it possible to import/export with this type of company? I am planning to offer Interior Design services and I might have to import some decorative items when it is needed.

---What is the cost of starting a Sole Proprietorship company?
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Old 07.03.2017, 18:46
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Re: PLEASE HELP:Starting a Sole Proprietorship Company

Sounds like you should maybe continue with your French lessons !

1) You need to register for TVA (VAT) as soon as your turnover hits Chf 100k, although you can do it before if you think this will be the case and can provide evidence to the TVA people

2) No need for an accounting company unless you have an SA company, where you need auditors.

You can either start a company SA or SÓrl, an SÓrl will cost about Chf 2.5k, you need to deposit Chf 20k (upto 50% of this could be in assets such as a car). Once the cantonal/commune taxes and the notary has been paid, you get about Chf 17.5 back to the COMPANY accounts that you can use as you see fit, but it is COMPANY money accountable.

Alternatively can set up a one man firm but you have no limitation on your liability....You also need to get a certificate from AVS people saying you are self employed, and for this you need to be able to show at least 3 independent, individual companies or people you are working for.

If you really are serious about this, find an accountant, pay him for an hour of his time and have him explain it all. There are also companies that provide this service, but i do not know where in Neuchatel.
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Old 07.03.2017, 19:28
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Re: PLEASE HELP:Starting a Sole Proprietorship Company

You need to get your permit changed to a self-employed one and for that you need a good business plan and evidence of sufficient funds to keep you going while the business gets established.

https://www.ch.ch/en/self-employment/

https://www.kmu.admin.ch/kmu/en/home...ird-state.html

https://www.startups.ch/en/inform/details/forms/

If you can't meet the requirements then you won't be able to be self-employed.
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Old 07.03.2017, 20:34
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Re: PLEASE HELP:Starting a Sole Proprietorship Company

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So can somebody explain to me how does their system work?
The starting point is to figure out if you have a legal right to establish a business. Only citizens, permanent residents (C permit holders) and EU/EEA citizens have an automatic right to do so. All others need to apply for such and see how it turns out.

It sounds like you'll need to consult a professional, but before handing out that kind of money, you need to be sure that you can in fact do it. Otherwise it would be wasted money.
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Old 07.03.2017, 21:00
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Re: PLEASE HELP:Starting a Sole Proprietorship Company

Have you had a look at this site?

www.soleenterprise.ch
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Old 07.03.2017, 21:03
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Re: PLEASE HELP:Starting a Sole Proprietorship Company

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The starting point is to figure out if you have a legal right to establish a business. Only citizens, permanent residents (C permit holders) and EU/EEA citizens have an automatic right to do so. All others need to apply for such and see how it turns out.

It sounds like you'll need to consult a professional, but before handing out that kind of money, you need to be sure that you can in fact do it. Otherwise it would be wasted money.
The key to opening an SÓrl or an SA is that one director is resident in Switzerland. As the OP stated "i moved here about 1 year ago" i think we can safely assume she has a permit, she even states she has a "B" permit
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Old 07.03.2017, 21:15
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Re: PLEASE HELP:Starting a Sole Proprietorship Company

Quote:
The key to opening an SÓrl or an SA is that one director is resident in Switzerland. As the OP stated "i moved here about 1 year ago" i think we can safely assume she has a permit, she even states she has a "B" permit
But she states coming from Iran and AFAIK non EU citizens do not have an automatic right to be self employed?
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Old 07.03.2017, 21:19
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Re: PLEASE HELP:Starting a Sole Proprietorship Company

Quote:
The key to opening an SÓrl or an SA is that one director is resident in Switzerland. As the OP stated "i moved here about 1 year ago" i think we can safely assume she has a permit, she even states she has a "B" permit
That makes no difference to whatever type of business they want to start. As Jim 2007 says only Swiss nationals, C permit holders and EU/EFTA nationals have the right to start a business here. Everyone else has to get permission to do so. If the criteria can't be met (good business plan and financial support) then that permission won't be granted.

tinanium, I'm curious how you think you can run a company here with "limited" French if you don't think it's good enough to get you a job? All the paperwork you're going to have to deal with will be in French.
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Old 07.03.2017, 22:27
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Re: PLEASE HELP:Starting a Sole Proprietorship Company

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That makes no difference to whatever type of business they want to start. As Jim 2007 says only Swiss nationals, C permit holders and EU/EFTA nationals have the right to start a business here. Everyone else has to get permission to do so. If the criteria can't be met (good business plan and financial support) then that permission won't be granted.

tinanium, I'm curious how you think you can run a company here with "limited" French if you don't think it's good enough to get you a job? All the paperwork you're going to have to deal with will be in French.
My German is still limited but I have started 2 companies here and am planning a third, it's not a perfect situation for me but I have managed so far with all paperwork being in German and will continue to do so.

OP, there's plenty of threads in the Business forum here about starting a company here in CH, don't let the naysayers put you off, it's not impossible and if you have drive and determination it's not even difficult. Good luck.
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Old 08.03.2017, 03:57
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Re: PLEASE HELP:Starting a Sole Proprietorship Company

Quote:
The key to opening an SÓrl or an SA is that one director is resident in Switzerland. As the OP stated "i moved here about 1 year ago" i think we can safely assume she has a permit, she even states she has a "B" permit
On the contrary creating a company brings no rights to a work permit. The regular rules apply.
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Old 08.03.2017, 10:26
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Re: PLEASE HELP:Starting a Sole Proprietorship Company

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On the contrary creating a company brings no rights to a work permit. The regular rules apply.
Did i ever say it was an avenue to a permit ?

I said 1 director needs to be resident in Switzerland, implying that person already had a valid permit to reside in Switzerland in order to be entered on to the Commercial Register as a resident director of a particular company.
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Old 08.03.2017, 21:25
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Quote:
Sounds like you should maybe continue with your French lessons !

1) You need to register for TVA (VAT) as soon as your turnover hits Chf 100k, although you can do it before if you think this will be the case and can provide evidence to the TVA people

2) No need for an accounting company unless you have an SA company, where you need auditors.

You can either start a company SA or SÓrl, an SÓrl will cost about Chf 2.5k, you need to deposit Chf 20k (upto 50% of this could be in assets such as a car). Once the cantonal/commune taxes and the notary has been paid, you get about Chf 17.5 back to the COMPANY accounts that you can use as you see fit, but it is COMPANY money accountable.

Alternatively can set up a one man firm but you have no limitation on your liability....You also need to get a certificate from AVS people saying you are self employed, and for this you need to be able to show at least 3 independent, individual companies or people you are working for.

If you really are serious about this, find an accountant, pay him for an hour of his time and have him explain it all. There are also companies that provide this service, but i do not know where in Neuchatel.
Thank you very much for the information. I have to admit that based on the information I have to far I feel that it would be a safer option to go with the One Man Firm as a beginner and yes, I think its a good idea to consult with a professional. I just need to find a company that can give consultation in English because if I do it in French I will end up being even more confused.

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You need to get your permit changed to a self-employed one and for that you need a good business plan and evidence of sufficient funds to keep you going while the business gets established.

https://www.ch.ch/en/self-employment/

https://www.kmu.admin.ch/kmu/en/home...ird-state.html

https://www.startups.ch/en/inform/details/forms/

If you can't meet the requirements then you won't be able to be self-employed.

Thank you for your feedback. yes I have checked those websites and that is how I ended up in their office. They have given me a long form to complete and yes I'm aware of the fact that there are requirement and therefore I will check those websites again and again not to miss anything and currently I'm working on my business plan. Hope they will approve it.

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The starting point is to figure out if you have a legal right to establish a business. Only citizens, permanent residents (C permit holders) and EU/EEA citizens have an automatic right to do so. All others need to apply for such and see how it turns out.

It sounds like you'll need to consult a professional, but before handing out that kind of money, you need to be sure that you can in fact do it. Otherwise it would be wasted money.

Thanks for your response. Regarding the right to establish a business, I don't think there will be any problem, I am a non EU citizen but I hold a Suisse B Permit which comes with the work permit. But since everybody is giving me cautions, then I will double check the issue with a professional. Thanks anyway.

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Have you had a look at this site?

www.soleenterprise.ch
Hello, thanks for your response, I suppose I haven't but I will have a look. Thanks

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That makes no difference to whatever type of business they want to start. As Jim 2007 says only Swiss nationals, C permit holders and EU/EFTA nationals have the right to start a business here. Everyone else has to get permission to do so. If the criteria can't be met (good business plan and financial support) then that permission won't be granted.

tinanium, I'm curious how you think you can run a company here with "limited" French if you don't think it's good enough to get you a job? All the paperwork you're going to have to deal with will be in French.
Hello and thanks for your response. I will have a look at that Non EU National issue before I start for sure, but as I said having the B Permit and the right to work might do the job. To be honest I didn't know that could be a problem for me.

And about my French, I have to say that I can read and write in French quite good and I can even speak good but by GOOD ENOUGH I meant well...I'm still kinda slow when it comes to speaking and I might have to ask people to repeat what they said so I can understand but otherwise dealing with paperwork in French is going to be more than ok!

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My German is still limited but I have started 2 companies here and am planning a third, it's not a perfect situation for me but I have managed so far with all paperwork being in German and will continue to do so.

OP, there's plenty of threads in the Business forum here about starting a company here in CH, don't let the naysayers put you off, it's not impossible and if you have drive and determination it's not even difficult. Good luck.
Thanks very much for your motivating response. Yes you are right, nothing is impossible, I am determined and my plan is to get as much as information as I can and I will see what is missing here and in which points I need to have improvements and changes and yeah there is a solution for every problem. And to be honest language is the least of my problems. I have been learning French for only 6 months as my third language and even now I am happy with my progress and for sure I will be better as time goes. Anyway thanks again for your response and good luck with your new Business.

Last edited by 3Wishes; 08.03.2017 at 22:44. Reason: merging consecutive replies
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