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Old 13.06.2009, 12:06
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UK LTD coming to Zurich - What is possible?

Hi everyone,

This site is fantastic and a great help. However everyone's situation is individual and therefore forgive me for asking the same old questions.

Currently we have a UK Based Limited Company - Shared Directorship with my 'Life Partner' (she's a Swiss National), I知 British. We are relocating to Zurich (1st Sept 09) and are seeking clients in the design and photographic arena (as per our UK clients).

I am wondering which is the best solution for us as we値l have limited funds for the Business in terms of starting up + Legal + Registration Fees.

1. We will both need to Work in Zurich, Self Employed as Freelancers.

So, could we BOTH be Sole Traders and Invoice under ONE Common Trading Name? Our service will involve working or many different clients. Estimated Annual Income (Joint based on previous UK Tax Year) could be CHF 100,000.00+

2. Our present Company Name is both our Surnames together + Limited. Would we have to re think / re brand ourselves for any Web site issues?
Our site is 'bothsurnames.com'

3. We might keep some UK Clients. So Invoicing back to the UK is a possible requirement. Can this be done as a Swiss Resident with ease. We値l Keep our UK Business Bank Account open for a while.

4. What is the easiest and most cost effective way of working here?

5. Can anyone recommend an Accountant that can do all the Forms and Starting Up and roughly what kind of fees are expected?

6. Or does anyone have Templates of T&C / Legals that would make the process a D.I.Y one and be willing to consult for a FEE or Beers and Bratwurst (or CHF's).

If there is anything I have missed out or need to add - please email / post any help. As this is will appreciated.

My head is in a spin and have so much to sort over the next 2 months before we arrive.

MANY Thanks indeed!!!!!! Wishing you ALL WELL.

Regards

Ben
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Old 13.06.2009, 12:22
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Re: UK LTD coming to Zurich - What is possible?

Wow that is a long list and on a budget.

If you decide to set up a Swiss GmbH (similar to UK LTD) you can use Launch Swiss www.launchswiss.com which were low setup fees etc and have had excellent service.

Myself I would close the UK Ltd, setup GmbH here but that is me and for a lot of reasons for me make sense.

The rest of being self employed and managing two companies I will let others chip in. For me having a limited liability and being treated as a seperate legal entity from myself etc all ranked high.

What ever you do it is going to cost time and money.

Good luck
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Old 13.06.2009, 12:38
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Re: UK LTD coming to Zurich - What is possible?

Thanks Magic.

Certainly I would prefer to close my UK LTD as we値l most likely not be using it much.

Opening a GmbH is preferred but we don't not have the CHF20,000 that it costs. We do have CHF10,000 + in assets but we値l have to wait a while for the extra CH10,000 for a secure bank deposit.

So I suppose our initial 'Budget' Set Up would be a temporary one.... And then we can go for the all singing and all dancing GmbH in say 6 months.

Our relocation and new purchases of equipment / office space will be taking up any spare funds we currently have.

Ben
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Old 13.06.2009, 13:03
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Re: UK LTD coming to Zurich - What is possible?

Not all of the 20,000 CHF has to be in cash for the puposes of setting up the company.
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Old 13.06.2009, 17:21
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Re: UK LTD coming to Zurich - What is possible?

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Not all of the 20,000 CHF has to be in cash for the puposes of setting up the company.
You are referring to a so called "Sacheinlagen-Grndung". While this is a way to found the company without the 20k in cash, it does have some disadvantages:

* The assets in kind have to be verified by an audit company
* The fee of the audit company will be >500chf in most cases
* The verification process will add 2+ weeks to the foundation process

Just something to consider. If you perform a founding with all assets in cash, you can get registered and go live within a week, assuming you have your bylaws and documentation setup already.

Startups.ch provides a reduction in the founding fees in exchange for signing up with their service partners. This could be an option if you're not pressed for time or want to work with a specific lawyer.

Hope that helps, and good luck with your foundation
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Old 13.06.2009, 17:34
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Re: UK LTD coming to Zurich - What is possible?

Hi Ben and welcome to EF

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1. We will both need to Work in Zurich, Self Employed as Freelancers.

So, could we BOTH be Sole Traders and Invoice under ONE Common Trading Name? Our service will involve working or many different clients. Estimated Annual Income (Joint based on previous UK Tax Year) could be CHF 100,000.00+
You can review this overview table of the forms of organizations in Switzerland, provided by gruenden.ch.

Based on your predicted revenue, please be aware that you will be obligated to keep your books in a certain manner and also have to register for VAT.

From that perspective, a GmbH seems like the way to go in the long run. You can however start working with a different form of organization, assuming you have all the residency and work permits already.


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2. Our present Company Name is both our Surnames together + Limited. Would we have to re think / re brand ourselves for any Web site issues? Our site is 'bothsurnames.com'
What website issues are you thinking about?


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4. What is the easiest and most cost effective way of working here?
In relation to what?


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5. Can anyone recommend an Accountant that can do all the Forms and Starting Up and roughly what kind of fees are expected?
When you're founding a GmbH between 2 - 4k as a minimum, depending how much consulting you need.


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6. Or does anyone have Templates of T&C / Legals that would make the process a D.I.Y one and be willing to consult for a FEE or Beers and Bratwurst (or CHF's).
Assuming that your company will be your main source of income it would only seem prudent to invest into expert advice for this important step. This could save you significant amounts of time and money in the long-run. Send me a PM and I can send you further references if that's interesting for you.
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Old 13.06.2009, 19:03
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Re: UK LTD coming to Zurich - What is possible?

OP should explore the possibility of invoicing through their UK Ltd till able to fund a Swiss LLC.
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Old 13.06.2009, 21:00
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Re: UK LTD coming to Zurich - What is possible?

Attalus & Goldtop,

Many thanks for taking the time to add to this posting.
And thanks for the welcome too. Hope things are well for you both?

In reference to the Web Site issues I have read on here (somewhere) that there is an issue with using your actual surname in the web site domain address.... I might have i all wrong and as mine is two names - I should be okay - I hope?

As for Both your points, spending time and money in the first instance will indeed prove sensible. To be honest I had not thought about keeping the Limited UK running and Invoicing through that until I have cash to do the GmbH.

Good advice - I’ll look into that when I return from Zurich tomorrow.

Keep up the great help guys.

Ta muchly

Ben
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Old 13.06.2009, 21:19
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Re: UK LTD coming to Zurich - What is possible?

Quote:
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You are referring to a so called "Sacheinlagen-Grndung". While this is a way to found the company without the 20k in cash, it does have some disadvantages:

* The assets in kind have to be verified by an audit company
* The fee of the audit company will be >500chf in most cases
* The verification process will add 2+ weeks to the foundation process

Just something to consider. If you perform a founding with all assets in cash, you can get registered and go live within a week, assuming you have your bylaws and documentation setup already.....
Also the notary fees, and possible the company registration fees, are higher when it is not all cash capital.
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Old 14.06.2009, 19:41
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Re: UK LTD coming to Zurich - What is possible?

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In reference to the Web Site issues I have read on here (somewhere) that there is an issue with using your actual surname in the web site domain address.... I might have i all wrong and as mine is two names - I should be okay - I hope?
I've never heard of that, could you point me to the source where you read that?

Presuming that your surnames aren't registered trademarks of products or services in the same domain which you are doing business in there shouldn't be a problem as far as I know.
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Old 14.06.2009, 21:54
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Re: UK LTD coming to Zurich - What is possible?

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We will both need to Work in Zurich, Self Employed as Freelancers.

So, could we BOTH be Sole Traders and Invoice under ONE Common Trading Name?
On a related note: I was thinking about your question again and tried to view it in a broader perspective.

If you are "rebooting" your business anyway, I would highly recommend to read "The E-Myth" by Michael E. Gerber and maybe structure your business according to those principles. Makes a lot of sense from my perspective, especially when you're starting from a more or less clean slate.

The book basically outlines ways to transform yourself and your business so that you own a business, and not a job.

Just a thought
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