Caregivers' leave

The new federal law on "improving the reconciliation of work and caring for close relatives" introduced a set of measures that took effect on 1 January 2021, while a second set of measures took effect on 1 July 2021. These are the measures concerning the paid leave granted.

Short-term leave to look after a relative

Since 1 January 2021, the new law grants short-term paid leave to an employee who has to look after a family member or their partner due to illness, accident or disability.

For full-time employees:

  • A maximum of three days' leave per incident is provided.
  • In total, leave may not exceed ten days per year.

What is new is the extension of the number of recipients. Assistance given to parents, brothers and sisters, spouses and partners now also counts.

Three criteria must be met to apply: (1) be employed, (2) care for a family member, (3) due to a health impairment (illness, accident, disability). The right to leave exists regardless of the level of health impairment of the supported person.

According to need, this leave can be taken as a whole or divided into hours and days. Requests for and the terms of leave must be agreed with the employment with a medical certificate from the doctor of the person supported.

Long-term leave care to for seriously sick children

As of 1 July 2021, paid leave of 14 weeks is granted to parents who have to stop work to look after a child with serious health impairments, due to illness or accident. A medical certificate is required from the child's doctor.

  • Leave can be taken in one block or as individual days, but within an 18-month period as of the first day of leave.
  • An allowance for loss of earnings is paid from the first day at 80% of gross monthly salary, to a maximum of CHF 196 per day.
  • If both parents work, each parent is entitled to care leave of seven weeks. They may nonetheless agree to share the leave differently.