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Old 08.11.2018, 15:37
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Leaving Switzerland as expat from China - can I get my pension

I am working in Switzerland for 3 years as an expat from China.
Before I start at beginning of 2015, Switzerland and China did not have social security agreement. That means during 2015, my company has to pay double pension for me (one part in my home country and 2nd part in Switzerland).
Then in Jul 2017, the Switzerland and China signed social security agreement, which means Chinese expat does not have to pay Swiss pension anymore, since the company is already paying Chinese pension for the expat.
Since my company pays all the tax and pension for me, so in my monthly salary letter there is no information on how much pension did I pay. According to my annual salary statement I did pay for the 2nd pillar for the last 3 years. However, in the reality, it was NOT clear for me how did my company operate for my Swiss pension. It looks like they put my 2nd pillar into a blocked bank account but not the official pension provider. I requested my pension certificate, but looks like they donít have it. It is clear that 3rd pillar not paid.
I can feel that the company HR is playing around and try to save money from my pension case.
Now I am leaving Switzerland and come to the question can I get my Swiss 2nd pillar pension as cash withdrawal ? I am planning to have a talk with my company HR and it will be a difficult talk Ė I think he will say balabala,,, with the conclusion that I canít get it.
So the help needed from English forum friends is - can anyone give me some suggestions before I talk with HR to make me better prepared? Legally am I entitled to get the 2nd pillar pension cash withdrawal?

Thanks very much
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Old 08.11.2018, 16:10
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Re: Leaving Switzerland as expat from China - can I get my pension

I don't have a definitive answer for you, we'll have to wait for the experts to chime in. But wouldn't it make sense that, if there IS an agreement between both countries, that you can't withdraw the money in cash, but it be rather transferred to your account back at home?
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Old 09.11.2018, 00:55
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Re: Leaving Switzerland as expat from China - can I get my pension

If you go leave switzerland definitely for a non-EU/AELS country you can, but you have to ask your pension institution. You can probably find it somewhere on your company intranet but your employer has to tell you in any case and you should have gotten a certificate.
As a last resort you can also ask directly to these guys:
http://www.verbindungsstelle.ch/xml_.../d376/f384.cfm
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Old 09.11.2018, 09:46
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Re: Leaving Switzerland as expat from China - can I get my pension

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I am working in Switzerland for 3 years as an expat from China.
Before I start at beginning of 2015, Switzerland and China did not have social security agreement. That means during 2015, my company has to pay double pension for me (one part in my home country and 2nd part in Switzerland).
Then in Jul 2017, the Switzerland and China signed social security agreement, which means Chinese expat does not have to pay Swiss pension anymore, since the company is already paying Chinese pension for the expat.
Since my company pays all the tax and pension for me, so in my monthly salary letter there is no information on how much pension did I pay. According to my annual salary statement I did pay for the 2nd pillar for the last 3 years. However, in the reality, it was NOT clear for me how did my company operate for my Swiss pension. It looks like they put my 2nd pillar into a blocked bank account but not the official pension provider. I requested my pension certificate, but looks like they donít have it. It is clear that 3rd pillar not paid.
I can feel that the company HR is playing around and try to save money from my pension case.
Now I am leaving Switzerland and come to the question can I get my Swiss 2nd pillar pension as cash withdrawal ? I am planning to have a talk with my company HR and it will be a difficult talk Ė I think he will say balabala,,, with the conclusion that I canít get it.
So the help needed from English forum friends is - can anyone give me some suggestions before I talk with HR to make me better prepared? Legally am I entitled to get the 2nd pillar pension cash withdrawal?

Thanks very much
Your "Pensionskasse" (second pillar) sends you a statement every year. That's where you see exactly how much money is in there and even the prediction how much pension you will get (if things go on the way they did which is not reliable as life gets in the way of that )

If you leave Switzerland "for ever", the second pillar money can be payed out. Two different rules if you move to an EU country or outside the EU. Info (German)

3rd pillar is a private thing. If you didn't set one up/payed in every year it doesn't exist. Nothing to do with the company you work for.
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Old 09.11.2018, 15:22
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Re: Leaving Switzerland as expat from China - can I get my pension

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If you go leave switzerland definitely for a non-EU/AELS country you can, but you have to ask your pension institution. You can probably find it somewhere on your company intranet but your employer has to tell you in any case and you should have gotten a certificate.
As a last resort you can also ask directly to these guys:
http://www.verbindungsstelle.ch/xml_.../d376/f384.cfm
Thanks for this link and I gave a call to them, what they can offer is that I can request the information search and then they will let me know who is my pension provider (but they can not tell how much is there). With this information, then I can go to the pension provider to know more.

I never receive a certificate from my "Pensionskasse" - probably my company did not pay or paid and then they kept the pension certificate to themselves. So that the company can still take back my pension money after I left Switzerland.

Will update progress after my talk with my HR
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Old 09.11.2018, 16:18
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Re: Leaving Switzerland as expat from China - can I get my pension

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I never receive a certificate from my "Pensionskasse" - probably my company did not pay or paid and then they kept the pension certificate to themselves.
Is see two problems which should be solved step by step and individually.

First, now mater what you have an entitlement to the paid pillar 2 money.
Second, the payout of said money when you leave Switzerland for good.

The second step can only be done once you got hold of the money and know where it actually is. I suggest to write a letter to your employer and formally request a pension statement, cite Art. 86b BVG as legal base, and mention that you will press charges according Art. 75 and 76 BVG if you do not get said statement within 14 days or it becomes apparent that the deducted money was not paid into a pension fund. Send this by registered mail to your employer. Best two letters, one to the head of HR and one to the managing director. You can find the name of the managing director at https://www.zefix.ch and the BVG here https://www.admin.ch/opc/de/classifi...152/index.html. As said use registered mail.

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So that the company can still take back my pension money after I left Switzerland.
Here the good news. If they paid into a pension fund it is yours and they cannot get it back. The worst that can happen in this case is that it get parked in an account in your name with the Auffangseinrichtung BVG. See http://www.chaeis.net/en/home.html and https://www.oak-bv.admin.ch/en/super...t-institution/
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Last edited by aSwissInTheUS; 20.11.2018 at 12:02. Reason: Typo: Employer not employee
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Old 20.11.2018, 10:17
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Re: Leaving Switzerland as expat from China - can I get my pension

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Is see two problems which should be solved step by step and individually.

First, now mater what you have an entitlement to the paid pillar 2 money.
Second, the payout of said money when you leave Switzerland for good.

The second step can only be done once you got hold of the money and know where it actually is. I suggest to write a letter to your employee and formally request a pension statement, cite Art. 86b BVG as legal base, and mention that you will press charges according Art. 75 and 76 BVG if you do not get said statement within 14 days or it becomes apparent that the deducted money was not paid into a pension fund. Send this by registered mail to your employer. Best two letters, one to the head of HR and one to the managing director. You can find the name of the managing director at https://www.zefix.ch and the BVG here https://www.admin.ch/opc/de/classifi...152/index.html. As said use registered mail.


Here the good news. If they paid into a pension fund it is yours and they cannot get it back. The worst that can happen in this case is that it get parked in an account in your name with the Auffangseinrichtung BVG. See http://www.chaeis.net/en/home.html and https://www.oak-bv.admin.ch/en/super...t-institution/
@aSwissInTheUS, thanks for your input. Latest news is that I wrote to 2nd pillar central office (http://www.verbindungsstelle.ch) to request my balance. They sent me a letter back stating that they can't find my account information & any balance. My tax adviser also mentioned to me that it could be in a vested acount. I will now right a letter to Substitute Occupational Benefit Institution(http://www.chaeis.net) to check is there any balance there. The question is if in this vested acount, can I get the cash out ?
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Old 20.11.2018, 12:22
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Re: Leaving Switzerland as expat from China - can I get my pension

@baoger Has the employer received your letter which you sent by registered mail? What was his reply? The 14 days to respond are nearly due. If you do not get a reply you should go to the police!

The rules regarding payout of pillar 2 money is always the same. Regardless if it is in a vested benefit account or in a pension fund. Useful information:

Swiss social insurance system: Period of stay in Switzerland and departure
https://www.sem.admin.ch/dam/data/se...zialvers-e.pdf
available in many other languages:
https://www.bsv.admin.ch/bsv/en/home...nd-depart.html

Information for Citizens of States with which Switzerland has not concluded a social security agreement (non-contracting states)
https://www.ahv-iv.ch/p/10.03.e

Leaving Switzerland and moving to an EU or EFTA member state
https://www.ahv-iv.ch/p/880.e

The voluntary old-age, survivorsí and disability insurance scheme
https://www.ahv-iv.ch/p/10.02.e

Present value tables - Compensation for pensions owed, premium refunds taking into account the equity clause
https://www.bsvlive.admin.ch/vollzug...eu/category:23

Reclaiming the Swiss withholding tax on payments by pension funds:
https://www.estv.admin.ch/dam/estv/d...IS_en_2017.pdf
or search here https://www.estv.admin.ch/estv/de/ho...formulare.html
for Q-IS if the above link does not work.

International social security agreements with Switzerland
https://www.bsv.admin.ch/dam/bsv/en/...80101%20EN.pdf
also
https://www.bsv.admin.ch/bsv/en/home...greements.html
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