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Old 29.06.2009, 14:53
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Tax at source -> tax returns

I've done a search but can't really find any info that answers my question fully. To cut a long story short, I've just had my first tax bill (after years of paying tax at source), and the bill comes to about three times the amount that was given to me by the tax authorities as an estimate.
Also, it's about twice as much as I paid in the first half of 2007 when I was still paying tax at source.

(i.e. Jan 2007-June 2007: tax at source
July 2007-December 2007: tax return)

Ergo my questions:
1) how reliable is the estimate normally from the tax authorities? Can my final bill really be three times the original estimate?
2) is having a C permit in Zurich City not really an advantage from a tax perspective?

Hope that sort of makes some sense - any advice, info, tips or past experiences gladly received!
Cheers,
macst
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Old 29.06.2009, 15:01
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Re: Tax at source -> tax returns

With tax at source you are taxed only on your Swiss salary, but the tax declaration asks for worldwide assets and income. The estimate is also only based on your Swiss salary. If you have substantial assets and other income then your final bill can be 3x more than the estimate.

Also, are you sure that it is your final bill? Around this time of year they send the geminde tax paymement slips that you need to pay in advance. They send me one payment slip for the full amount, and then another to pay an installment. I almost had a heart attack when I thought I had to pay both payments
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Old 29.06.2009, 15:24
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Re: Tax at source -> tax returns

Thanks for your reply, MarieZug!
It's definitely my final bill ("Definitive Rechnung"), and I don't have substantial assets anywhere, never mind outside of Switzerland. I guess I'm just a bit confused as to how I can pay X amount in Quellensteuer for the first part of the year, but then be asked for virtually double that amount for the second half of the same year (July-December). Nothing changed in that year, still not married, no kids, still living in Zurich, still on the same salary...
Which made me wonder if having a C permit is not worth it, especially if you live in Zurich City (122% tax rate in 2007).
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Old 29.06.2009, 15:38
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Re: Tax at source -> tax returns

are you sure that the authorities have transferred the tax at source you have already paid to the people that asking for this money?

believe it or not they are not the same people! essentially you have an 'account' with the tax at source people which get tops up monthly or whatever depending on your employer. when it is necessary to fill in an actual tax return you submit it to another office/department. you have to actually tell them you have paid tax at source already when they demand you settle the bill. then tell the tax at source people to transfer the money to the others.

this just happened to me for in VD for 2007. quick phone call to each party, received a letter: sign here to confirm your bank account details and the rebate i was to receive. just received a nice wedge from them now too (c;

i assume it the same in ZRH. start with this.


EDIT: C & B permit does not matter when it comes to actually making a tax return. they are identically except that under a C you HAVE to make a return. under a B you usually only make one if salary is >= 120kCHF

Last edited by bill_door; 29.06.2009 at 15:41. Reason: permit stuff added.
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Old 29.06.2009, 15:40
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Re: Tax at source -> tax returns

Best to find a local accountant to go through the figures with you.
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Old 29.06.2009, 15:54
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Re: Tax at source -> tax returns

Thanks, bill_door.
Yep, this is the first time I have had to submit a tax return because I do earn less than 120K (boo hoo), and because I switched from a B permit to a C permit on 1st July 2007.
My tax return was filled in by an accountant, so I am pretty confident the figures are OK, especially as the "taxable amount" stacks up with the 6-month period that I submitted it for. The final bill also states that it is for the period 1st July - 31st December 2007, so I am pretty sure they are aware of the fact that I paid tax at source for the first six months of the year.
I've rang the accountant to try and follow this up, but he's got his answering machine on at the moment. Had a quick chat with HR at work, and they seem pretty sure it's accurate, and that it's not always beneficial to have a C permit, particularly when you live in Zurich City.
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Old 29.06.2009, 18:22
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Re: Tax at source -> tax returns

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I've rang the accountant to try and follow this up, but he's got his answering machine on at the moment. Had a quick chat with HR at work, and they seem pretty sure it's accurate, and that it's not always beneficial to have a C permit, particularly when you live in Zurich City.
I've believe that with Quellensteuer you are charged an average of all the Geminde in your Kanton, but with a tax declaration you are changed the rate of the Geminde where you live.
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Old 29.06.2009, 19:47
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Re: Tax at source -> tax returns

If there is an error in the tax demand, then you must appeal within 30 days of the assessment. So make sure that your accountant verifies the assessment and challenges it as necessary.
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Old 29.06.2009, 20:57
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Re: Tax at source -> tax returns

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I've believe that with Quellensteuer you are charged an average of all the Geminde in your Kanton
Correct. Then, when your tax return is processed by the Steureramt, they adjust up or down according to the precise rates for your Gemeinde.

I don't understand how it can make much difference over the course of a tax year.
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