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Swiss Buyers' Info

  • Switzerland
  • France
  • Austria

How does inheritance work on properties in Switzerland?

To manage how your property is devloved, we advise that you either execute a codecil to your existing will and send this to your Swiss notary or request a new separate will be prepared by a Swiss notary.

Inheritance tax is payable in Switzerland but is much lower than in the UK and most European countries. Inheritance tax is a cantonal tax and varies from one canton to another. In most cantons there is no tax between spouses and in Canton Valais (Verbier) there is zero inheritance tax if the property is willed to direct line descendants.

In Canton Vaud (Villars) the tax is progressive - starting at 1.8% for property valued at up to 500,000 Sfrs, rising to 5.068% if the fiscal value of the property is over 1m Sfrs. If the property is registered in the name of more than one person, then tax would be payable only on the share of the property owned by the deceased.

Your estate may be liable to pay tax in the country in which you reside but if there is a dual taxation treaty with Switzerland (as most countries do) you will be given a tax credit for any tax paid in Switzerland. 

Information correct as of 1st January 2024. This may change as rules and regulations change often, so please contact us directly if you have any specific enquiries.