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Old 25.07.2018, 18:08
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Tax declaration and saving accounts abroad

Dear all,

I'm making the tax declaration myself for the year 2017 (I've got an extension until end of September).

I live in Zürich.

I've been the other day to the tax office and asked few questions regarding the bank accounts that I've abroad.
I know I've to declare everything but what the lady at the office told me is that all the interests in bank/saving accounts should be written under the column "B" in the related sheet.

As far as I know the column "B" is related to interests where you didn't pay taxation on top yet, in the original country i believe.
In fact they taxed me something like 27% on it already but the lady was adamant saying that for bank/saving accounts that's the right place.

Any similar experience from the any other user?
Thanks in advance.
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Old 25.07.2018, 18:49
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Re: Tax declaration and saving accounts abroad

Column A is for interest and dividends subject to Swiss withholding tax. See page 32 of the Wegleitung.

There exists extra forms DA-1, DA-2, and DA-3 which can be used to offset foreign tax in case there is a double tax treaty and clause which might apply. See page 34 of the Wegleitung.

If you can profit of a double tax treaty you have to list the gross interest/dividend before withheld tax in column B. If not you can enter the net interest/dividend after withheld tax in column B. Also page 34 of the Wegleitung.

Wegleitung Canton Zurich:
https://www.steueramt.zh.ch/internet...017_HA+DEF.pdf

Additional Wegleitung for forms DA-1, DA-2, and DA-3
https://www.steueramt.zh.ch/internet...3+2017+DEF.pdf

Information by the Swiss Government about double taxation treaties>
https://www.sif.admin.ch/sif/de/home...ung---dba.html
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Old 25.07.2018, 18:58
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Re: Tax declaration and saving accounts abroad

One caveat of those forms is that AFAIK you don't recover any tax if the total amount is below a certain threshhold.

So if the interest you have been earning is just small change, it may not actually be worth the bother.

I just declare my foreign accounts on the main bank account & stocks sheet and wave goodbye to any foreign withholding tax.
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Old 25.07.2018, 19:03
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Re: Tax declaration and saving accounts abroad

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One caveat of those forms is that AFAIK you don't recover any tax if the total amount is below a certain threshhold.
Total foreign tax must be at least CHF 50. If you are bellow this threshold you are allowed to declare the net interest/dividend. Also page 34 of the Wegleitung.

Disclaimer: This information applies to canton Zurich only. Other cantons, other laws and rules.
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Old 25.07.2018, 19:44
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Re: Tax declaration and saving accounts abroad

first of all, thanks for the replies.

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There exists extra forms DA-1, DA-2, and DA-3 which can be used to offset foreign tax in case there is a double tax treaty and clause which might apply.
This is what I was thinking too, in fact the lady was saying that for bank/saving accounts, you do not need the DA-1 form, that is for obligations, stock, etc. And this made me confused, I thought to use it to avoid the double taxation, I guess paying only the difference (from 35% that they apply here)
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Old 25.07.2018, 19:46
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Re: Tax declaration and saving accounts abroad

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I just declare my foreign accounts on the main bank account & stocks sheet and wave goodbye to any foreign withholding tax.
This is what she told me to do, I'm still not convinced. We are, just to give more context, talking about around 800 CHF of interests, I'm not sure how much is taxation they'll apply (35%?) but frankly I'm not keen on paying again on top, for something earned abroad...

Thank you.
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Old 25.07.2018, 19:50
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Re: Tax declaration and saving accounts abroad

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, I guess paying only the difference (from 35% that they apply here)
The 35% are only provisional. The actual rate depends on your total net income as interest, dividends, etc. are treated just like any other income like rent, pensions, wage, bonus, lottery winnings, etc.

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I'm not keen on paying again on top, for something earned abroad...
If you earned it it is taxed. Does not mater where you earned it, your global income and wealth is subject to Swiss taxation. Its the law, its the rules.

Last edited by aSwissInTheUS; 25.07.2018 at 20:09.
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Old 25.07.2018, 19:53
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Re: Tax declaration and saving accounts abroad

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This is what she told me to do, I'm still not convinced. We are, just to give more context, talking about around 800 CHF of interests, I'm not sure how much is taxation they'll apply (35%?) but frankly I'm not keen on paying again on top, for something earned abroad...

Thank you.
Yes, I see. In that case I would pursue it too.
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Old 25.07.2018, 20:32
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Re: Tax declaration and saving accounts abroad

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The 35% are only provisional.
I thought it was fixed, https://awa.zh.ch/internet/volkswirt...m/steuern.html.

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If you earned it it is taxed. Does not mater where you earned it, your global income and wealth is subject to Swiss taxation. Its the law, its the rules.
Understood and that's ok, I still think that the double taxation avoidance should be applied in this case. Thanks.
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Old 26.07.2018, 03:35
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Re: Tax declaration and saving accounts abroad

From your own link - "Withholding tax is refunded on application if the taxed securities are declared on the tax return."

This is only about swiss accounts of course, for your foreign ones you should contact the foreign tax office for whom the money was withheld, swiss have nothing to do with it
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