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On 15 December 2016 Parliament accepted the revision of the rules on the taxation at source of employment income and passed the final wording of the law. From what we know at present, a realistic assumption is that the law will enter into force on 1 January 2020. The revision became necessary after a number of Federal Court decisions revealed that the existing rules had shortcomings and contradicted the freedom of movement with the EU.
The uniform procedure for subsequent ordinary assessments foreseen in the revised law will close the gap between individuals subject to tax at source and those subject to ordinary taxation, and make them more comparable. The revision involves corrections rather than fundamental changes to taxation at source. However, it does leave gaps and a lack of clarity on certain points. Many of the provisions still have to be defined in detail by the FTA and the cantons. This shows just how complex the matter is, but at the same time creates an opportunity to govern taxation at source more precisely and clarify the situation regarding taxpayers and parties liable for remitting the tax. It will be easier to adapt the upcoming implementing ordinances and circulars to take account of the relevant social developments. It is to be hoped that the authorities responsible will also continue to use these ordinances and circulars as an opportunity to modernise taxation at source. The first drafts are likely to be available from mid- 2017.