My Swiss Insurnace

Insurances You Need as an Expat in Switzerland: An Overview

February 02nd, 2020 General Insurance

If you are an expat moving to or living in Switzerland, then figuring out the right insurances is essential for you. While there are tons of information available on internet about insurances for expats in Switzerland, it is often tough to find a comprehensive guide. So, here’s a comprehensive overview on what are the mandatory insurances in Switzerland and what are the essentials ones that you need to take out, even though the law does not mandate it.

Let’s start with the mandatory insurances in Switzerland!

These are the insurances you are legally mandated to obtain if you are living in the country: 

1. Basic Health Insurance

2. Accident Insurance

3. Car and Motor Bike Insurance (applicable to vehicle owners)

4. Building Insurance (applicable to homeowners)

Basic Health Insurance

Every Swiss resident is bound by law to obtain the basic health insurance within 3 months of arrival in the country. As the name suggests, this insurance covers your treatment cost for accidents, sickness and maternity. All insurance companies in Switzerland offer this basic health insurance with same benefits. 

Here’s some points that you need to keep in mind while availing Basic Health insurance:

  • It is crucial that you understand all the inclusions in the basic health insurance. This way you can ask your consultant to add any additional coverage that you may need.
  • The standard deductible for basic health insurance is CHF 300 per year. Cost of treatment exceeding this amount is paid by the health insurance fund.
  • Basic health insurance being a legal mandate, insurance companies cannot reject applications based on present health condition.
Accident Insurance

As per Swiss law, your employer is liable to pay (either fully or partially) this insurance for any occupational or non-occupational accidents. For unemployed persons (for example, your non-working partner or parents) as well as children, accident insurance needs to be taken out within the basic health insurance. 

It might be a good idea to check with your employer regarding how much accident cover you’ve got. Accordingly, you can decide whether you do need any additional cover or not.

Car and Motor Bike Insurance

If you own a car or a motor bike in Switzerland, then it is mandatory to get your vehicle insured. In fact, you would need to provide confirmation for your third-party liability insurance in order to obtain a Swiss license plate for your vehicle. 

While third party liability insurance which covers the damage caused to any third party (by your vehicle) is legally mandatory, you might want to insure your vehicle against complete or partial damage (in case of accidents) too!

Buildings Insurance

If you own a building in Switzerland, insuring it against fire, explosions or any other natural disaster is a must. While all insurance companies offer the basic buildings insurance at a reasonable sum, it is essential that you look into the fine print and figure out what is insured and what is not. Accordingly, you may decide to purchase additional cover.

What are the Essential (Yet not Legally Mandatory) Insurances in Switzerland?

For those looking for an all-around protection, the legally mandatory insurances often fall short. Here, you may want to obtain some supplementary (yet essential) insurance covers that protect you, your loved ones and your financial health. 

Here are the essential insurance covers that expats in Switzerland will need:

1. Third Party Liability Insurance

2. Household Contents Insurance

3. Supplementary Health Insurance

4. Legal Protection Insurance

5. Car and Motorbike Insurance (Comprehensive)

Third Party Liability Insurance

Unintentional damage to a third party is more common than you think. And in case, you are the liable one, the cost of damage can easily burn a hole in your pocket. A third-party liability insurance can protect you in such cases. It is not uncommon for landlords to ask for this cover while renting out houses and apartments. 

Most insurance companies offer this cover for individuals as well as for partners/families.

Household Contents Insurance

As the name suggests, this insurance covers your furniture and other household belongings against theft, robbery, fire, smoke and a number of natural disasters. Most household contents insurance in Switzerland lets you cover your personal belongings too. While the premium amount will heavily depend on the number of items and their value, it is often advised to combine this cover with third party liability insurance and buildings insurance.

Supplementary Health Insurance

The basic health insurance is a legal mandate. But the cover provided under this is pretty limited. For a comprehensive health cover, taking out supplementary health insurance is often encouraged. From dental cover to treatment in private or semi-private hospitals, you can incorporate a number of elements (as per your convenience and requirement) under supplementary health cover.

Legal Protection Insurance

This insurance covers the financial expenses resulting from any legal dispute. While the coverage amounts and components vary from provider to provider, you can combine it with other insurances or take it our separately.

Car and Motorbike Insurance (Comprehensive)

This is one of the most important insurances that you need to get if you have a car or motorbike. This supplementary insurance lets you partially or fully cover your vehicle in case any damage. Usually, vehicle owners combine it with the third-party liability insurances.

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Whether it is your home country or in Switzerland, understanding various nuances of insurances call for expertise. This is why our experts offer extensive consultation to understand your requirements and suggest you the insurances you need. Get in touch with us for a no obligation consultation in English today!

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