You have chosen to employ an au pair to help you with childcare and light housework. But before you get down to business, the following points must be considered:

What you need to know

Employement Au Pair

In Switzerland there are clear regulations for the employment of au pairs. Certain conditions are the same in all cantons and some vary from canton to canton. At the bottom of the page you will find the most important au pair information sheets of the cantons.

Here are some of the most important points to consider:

  • Families who want to hire an au pair from a third country must obtain the permit through a recognised agency in Switzerland
  • Au pairs from third countries may be 18 - 25 years old, au pairs from EU/EFTA countries may be 18 - 30 years old
  • Au pairs from third countries may work in Switzerland as an au pair for a maximum of 1 year, au pairs from EU/EFTA countries may work as an au pair for a maximum of 2 years
  • The Au Pair salary is based on the guidelines of the respective canton and in Switzerland is between 500 - 800 CHF net monthly
  • The au pair and the host family must not be of the same nationality, have the same mother tongue and/or be related
  • The language spoken at home with the host family should be either German, French or Italian, depending on the canton in which the host family lives
  • The au pairs may work a maximum of 30 hours per week, of which the host mother or host father must be present at home as a carer for at least 50% (15 hours) of this time
  • The au pairs help mainly in childcare with and light housework
  • The au pairs work either 5 days at 6 hours or 6 days at 5 hours
  • As a family, you are an employer, which is why you must comply with the legal obligations, such as issuing the written monthly salary statement, the registration with the social security institutions, the withholding tax declaration, the annual salary statement and the annual statements of social security and withholding tax deductions
  • Board and lodging is legally prescribed at 990 CHF per month and salary
  • As a host family, you must pay the au pairs a monthly meal allowance if they are on holiday or do not eat at home on a day off, the AHV rates apply here

As a family, you are an employer, which is why you are subject to legal obligations regarding social security, withholding tax, insurance, etc. Perfect Way offer families a separate service, where all bureaucratic tasks are taken over for you in an all-round care.

Work permit for au pairs

In Switzerland, the number of au pair permits (third countries) is limited and certain cantons have decided not to issue permits for au pairs from third countries. These include, for example, the cantons of Zurich, Vaud, Solothurn, Thurgau, Fribourg, Neuchâtel, Geneva, Obwaldn, Nidwalden and more. 

In these cantons it is only possible to hire au pairs with an EU passport. For EU citizens, the free movement of persons applies and is therefore very simple.

Some cantons approve au pair permit applications, these would be: Aargau, St. Gallen, Bern, Basel-Stadt, Basel-Land, Luzern, Graubünden, Lucerne and Zug. (certain canton's, it also depends on whether there are sufficient quotas available).