Freelancing on the side

An SME in another country has offered to hire me to do a specific programming task for them. Since 95% of you have frontend, backend or fullstack in your job titles, I thought someone here might have some advice…

How should one go about this in Switzerland - i.e., do I need a business number or anything?
Do I need to charge VAT?
How would I go about declaring this income (am taxed at source on permit B here)?

Keep in mind, this is a very small job, <20hrs, and I have no plans to evolve this into a significant source of income.

I would recommend using a payroll company located in Switzerland to serve as an intermediate between you and your foreign client. They will charge you a fee to take care of all this for you.

Really? For such a small amount of non-recurring work?

do the work, get paid (perhaps on your swiss bank account), come tax declaration time (most cantons by end of April for the past year) if the amount is >2000CHF declare as independent revenue. you might want to call your tax authority to ask what form you should use.

That’s not going to cover social contributions though, right?

You are already employed (so you are not considered “independant”). So this will just be additional income that you would declare. Ask your tax authority.

No, you don’t charge VAT.

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Right, so I think I will just get paid directly to my personal foreign currency account, then next year declare it as accessory income and pay 10% flat tax on it here (Barème/Tarif D). Apparently this is fine for any side work that doesn’t exceed 30% of my full-time job. I don’t see any issues with this and don’t want to go through a 3rd party for this small side-contract.

Any caveats that haven’t been brought up yet?

the only thing not discussed was clearing with your employer if it’s ok to do this side work…as far as i remember you might be contractually required to disclose this sort of activity as they are concerned by your well-being (you should not come to work being tired, etc.) however probably most people freelancing on the side don’t do this. might be a problem if they do find out though :smirk: :zipper_mouth_face:

going through a local company will just eat into your margin…makes little sense if that is your customer, my 2c

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