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pension (in general some 60-70%), and grown-up children normally miss out on any benefits; the same generally also goes for a partner to whom you are not married – however, depending on the pension fund, there are exceptions to the rule, and partners may be insured equally to a spouse. Savings remain with the pension fund once the retiree and spouse have passed away. If this happens at an early stage, the amounts “lost” may be considerable. Sleep well at night with a monthly pension With the monthly pension you have a regular, secure, and most importantly, a lifelong income without having to spend time and effort organizing it. No financial skills are needed, and the pension fund handles investments and carries the risks of you living to be 100. The psychological effects of this are not to be underestimated and can in the

end be a decisive aspect, at least when it comes to the portion of income covering basic needs. A mix for the best of both worlds? In many cases, a split of a monthly pension and lump sum payment may very well be a compromise giving the best of both worlds; on one hand, a regular and secure income to cover basic needs, on the other, savings on the side to allow more flexibility for unforeseen needs or larger investments – or perhaps even gifts. You are well advised to have a clear picture of what risks you are prepared to take on in this regard, and of what balance you want between basic financial needs and secure lifelong income. Each individual’s own family situation and objectives with respect to estate planning help to determine what’s right. In any case, given the large amounts of money involved, standard solutions are out of place. Individual financial plan-

ning is a complex and challenging task which is required years in advance. The earlier financial gaps are detected, the easier they are to close by private savings. In this regard, time is on your side.


Cecilia Stenberg PricewaterhouseCoopers AG Swiss Federal Tax Expert 058 792 76 52

Cecilia, who is Swedish, speaks three languages, and has lived in Switzerland for the last fifteen years, is an expert on personal wealth and individual taxation solutions with a focus on expats.

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Hello Switzerland for Expatriates, Summer Edition 2012  

Hello Switzerland is written by expats for expats living in Switzerland. Designed mainly for English speakers, the magazine contains feature...