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Old 27.03.2018, 21:42
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2nd Pillar - My employer forgot.

Hi friends,

I work for a large Swiss company. I have been working there for 2 years. They have forgotten to create and contribute to my 2nd pillar pension account. I wasn't aware until recently that it was compulsory in Switzerland after working 3 consecutive months. Feels like they are trying to avoid granting 2nd pillar. (Stupid on my part not knowing about this until now)

What would you do in my case? please feel free to comment. Any suggestion will definitely help.

Kind regards
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Old 27.03.2018, 22:16
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Re: 2nd Pillar - My employer forgot.

First, I'd advise not assuming that they are trying to avoid giving you 2nd pillar cover. As it is compulsory, and as your employer is a) large and b) Swiss, it is unlikely that anything has happened other than what you say: they forgot.

The 2nd pillar is a pension scheme. It must fulfil, at minimum, the requirements of the relevant law, called the BVG. Many companies offer pension benefits beyond that minimum. These are known as "über-obligatorisch".

There is no personal "2nd pillar pension account" that is created especially for you, not in the sense that you could see it on an account statement like a bank account. However, you should be able to see a deduction on your monthly salary statement, for your contributions towards the pension plan.
  1. Check your employment contract. In there, it should state how much (as a percentage) the deduction will be for the 1st pillar social security contributions (AHV), for unemployment insurance, and for the 2nd pillar pension plan (BVG), and what percentage (it must be at least 50%) of the total contributions for 2nd pillar that your employer will pay.

  2. Go the the Human Resources Department. Ask there, nicely, for a copy of the Rules of the Pension Plan. You are entitled to these. OR: check to see whether they might (forgotten) be in the info-pack you received when you first started work there. Read them, to make sure you understand how those contributions are made.

  3. Go back to the Human Resources Department. Ask for a Benefits Statement of the Pension Plan. It is a document reflecting your assumed levels of coverage/pay-outs (rather vaguely) in the event of disability, old-age and death. Some pension schemes do provide this, others do not. Obviously, if they haven't insured you, they won't be able to issue your Benefits Statement. However, the absence of a Benefits Statement does not, in itself, prove that you are not in the scheme.

  4. Check your salary statements (pay slips). Not only the monthly ones, but also the one you got at the end of the year, summarising the whole year. Make sure you understand what each deduction means.

If they really have forgotten to cover you, and you really are in the bracket entitled to cover, they will have to correct this. Be sure of your facts, though, first.
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Old 27.03.2018, 22:24
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Re: 2nd Pillar - My employer forgot.

I get a statement every year, usually in January. Are there Pensionskassen that don't do this?

Others at my job complain about the fact that $job only pays the minimum into the BVG and the returns are mediocre - at best.

Now, they've at least changed the Pensionskasse (though I'm actually de-jure still employed by a company acquired over ten years ago that had its employees insured at a different PK and my returns are apparently not as bad).

Anyway. I'm not sure but if the employer really hasn't paid anything into the PK for two years (willfully or not), I assume they have to correct this ASAP.

Swiss law generally allows for "honest mistakes" - but once you learn of them, you have to correct them or the consequences are sometimes dire.
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Old 28.03.2018, 07:45
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Re: 2nd Pillar - My employer forgot.

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...There is no personal "2nd pillar pension account" that is created especially for you, not in the sense that you could see it on an account statement like a bank account.
Really? So what's that statement I get yearly (and can access at anytime via the AXA website) about?
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Old 28.03.2018, 09:17
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Re: 2nd Pillar - My employer forgot.

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There is no personal "2nd pillar pension account" that is created especially for you, not in the sense that you could see it on an account statement like a bank account. However, you should be able to see a deduction on your monthly salary statement, for your contributions towards the pension plan.
.
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Really? So what's that statement I get yearly (and can access at anytime via the AXA website) about?
There definitely is a personal statement. I get it in January every year.

How else would you know what has been paid in/accrued for you?
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Old 28.03.2018, 09:31
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Re: 2nd Pillar - My employer forgot.

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There definitely is a personal statement. I get it in January every year.

How else would you know what has been paid in/accrued for you?
It's a personal statement of your share of the collective pot of money.
Not a personal account as such

But yes, there should be lots of indicators about the pension scheme
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Old 28.03.2018, 09:42
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Re: 2nd Pillar - My employer forgot.

OP, what sums and amount of work hours are we talking about? And how old are you? What does your monthly salary statement say, how much got deducted in percentages of your income above, say, 20k annualised?

From what I vaguely remember, only the portion above 20-25k annual income is subject to 2nd pillar. And you need to have reached a certain age (perhaps 24 for women, 25 for men) before capital-building premiums for 2nd pillar need to paid. Until that age only the premiums for the insurance of the risks that are usually insured by 2nd pillar are deducted.

Since you say it's a large company, meaning you'd be far from the only victim, I seriously doubt anything nefarious is going on. Perhaps upload a scan of a salary statment, with personal and other data removed you don't want to tell.
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Old 28.03.2018, 13:26
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Re: 2nd Pillar - My employer forgot.

Here, in German, info about the 2nd Pillar from the government department in charge of the 1st Pillar:
https://www.svazurich.ch/bvg

which shows, under "Nicht obligatorisch versichert", the list of people who do not have to be insured in the 2nd Pillar.
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