As from 1 January 2021 working men are entitled to two weeks of paid paternity leave, freely selectable within 6 months from the birth of the child.
In voting “yes” for maternity leave for paternal fathers, Switzerland became the last nation in Western Europe to do so. Previously fathers in Switzerland had been allowed just one day off for the birth of a child (the same as for moving home), and the new ruling increases that to 10 days paid leave, plus 2 additional days for every 5 working days, making 14 in total.
The law was actually approved by parliament last year, but a group of conservative politicians gathered enough signatures against the ruling to force a referendum. The resultant vote was 60% in favour, with the highest support coming from the French and Italian regions of Switzerland.
14 days paid leave, freely selectable within 6 months from the birth of the child: With the “yes” vote on September 27, 2020, the way is clear for the introduction of paternity leave for both employed and self-employed fathers.
Following is a short Q&A on the subject based on SVA Zürich (www.svazurich.ch)
- Who is entitled to receive the payment?
- Those who have been insured under national old age and disability insurance for the 9 months before the child’s birth
- and have been employed for at least 5 months during these 9 months
- and are an employee or are self-employed on the day the child is born
- How and where does a father register?
- Registration is only possible after all 14 vacation days have been taken or after the 6-month period has expired.
- The compensation office of the employer with whom the last day of vacation was taken is responsible.
- When and for how long is the entitlement?
- The 14 daily allowances can be taken within 6 months from the day the child is born.
- Two-week paternity leave is made up of 10 working days plus 2 additional days for every 5 working days.
- How much is the compensation?
- For employees, 80 percent of the earned income that the father earned before the child was born, up to a maximum of CHF 196.00 per day.
- For self-employed, the basis is the average daily income in the calendar year before the birth of the child. (If requested, earned income in the year of birth may be allowed as the basis.)
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