Source taxpayers - beware of unintentional tax avoidance

New source tax regulations - need for action to be analyzed now!

As you may have learned from the media, new regulations in connection with the source tax have been put into force as of January 1, 2021. However, there is a need for action for source taxpayers in the next few weeks!

If source taxpayers meet certain requirements, they must request the tax return forms from the tax administration of the Canton of Berne on their own initiative by March 31, 2023. If this is not done, source taxpayers could be punished for tax avoidance in the worst case.

Checklist for source taxpayers (residing in the Canton of Bern):

If you reside in the Canton of Bern, answer the questions below to find out if you have to report to the tax administration on your own initiative, if necessary, to avoid a tax evasion offense:
  • You received a gross salary of at least CHF 120,000.
  • At the end of the year, you have assets in Switzerland of at least CHF 150,000.
  • You have earned other income of at least CHF 3,000 (e.g. income from self-employment, alimony, orphan's pensions, widow's pensions or income from movable or immovable assets).
  • You own a property abroad with a value of at least CHF 300,000.
  • You have earned rental income of at least CHF 6,000 from foreign real estate.
If you answered "Yes" to any of the above statements, it is likely that you will have to file a tax return. We will be happy to advise you on the clarification, the possible application to the Bern Tax Administration by March 31, 2023 and the subsequent completion of your tax return.

If you have answered all the questions above with "No", you can voluntarily apply for the submission of your tax return by March 31, 2023.

However, this of course only makes sense if the tax burden is lower with the "ordinary procedure" than with the withholding tax. Whether filing the tax return is worthwhile, you can test below:
  • You have made a purchase into the pension fund/BVG or contributions to pillar 3a.
  • You have paid debt interest/mortgage interest.
  • You have paid childcare costs in (e.g. KITA).
  • You have incurred costs for education and training in.
  • You have paid amounts in to persons in need of support.
  • You have paid alimony and maintenance contributions.
If you answered "yes" to any of the above statements, it could be, that the preparation of a tax return and an ordinary assessment may be worthwhile for you from a tax point of view. We will be happy to provide you with a specific comparative calculation.


Due to the changes that have come into force, source taxpayers, especially with a gross income of less than CHF 120,000.00 or primary tax domicle abroad (expatriates), must independently check whether they need to submit a tax return and thus switch to ordinary taxation. The above questions give an indicative result - please contact us for advice on your individual case.

Disclaimer: M&M Tax GmbH is not liable for any decisions made on the basis of the above information. The content of this blog entry is for general information purposes only and is not a substitute for personal advice.