What the Pension Fund is responsible for
Law an Occupational Pension Plans
Almost all enterprises in Switzerland are subject to the Swiss Federal Law on Occupational Retirement, Surviving Dependents’ and Invalidity Pension Plans, or the BVG for short. The BVG is mandatory for both sole proprietors and companies which are so-called legal entities (e.g. AG, GmbH, etc.) recorded in the Swiss Commercial Register and employ individuals obliged to make AHV contributions.
Pension plan and account
Definitive calculation of your pension fund contribution is based on the IntegralStiftung pension plan which applies to you and your annual salary. This contribution, which your employer must transfer, is calculated as a percentage of your AHV annual wages. As a rule, the employer and the employee each pay one half of the contribution. The employee’s half of the contribution is deducted from their salary and identified as such on the pay slip.
Your retirement capital is documented in a retirement savings account. The IntegralStiftung maintains a personal retirement savings account based on the relevant pension plan for every individual who is insured with them. Your pension assets respectively your retirement capital equals the total sum of all contributions in your retirement savings account. See your pension fund statement for information on the current status of your pension assets.
Vested pension benefits
When you change jobs, you leave your old employer’s pension fund and your new employer registers you with their pension fund. Under the terms of the law on occupational benefits plans, the former pension fund must transfer existing pension assets to the new pension fund. The technical term for this sum of money is “vested pension benefits”.
Talking about volatile (not risky)
Stock market traders often define a ‘risk’ as being merely the risk of a making a loss. Seen over a period of more than one year a risk may therefore possibly result in a profit. So, ‘risky’ or ‘risk’ are not the appropriate terms to describe what happens on financial markets; ‘volatile’ or ‘volatility’ are better, more precise definitions.
The concept of solidarity
The IntegralStiftung sees many parallels between itself and a social security scheme. Which is why the concept of solidarity is a very important one to us. We take a realistic view of today’s society – every year more than half of all marriages in Switzerland end in divorce. Pensioners can also get divorced, sometimes resulting in serious economic consequences. Insofar as the requirements are met, the IntegralStiftung pays the full mandatory divorced person’s pension instead of limiting itself to the minimum stipulated by the BVG.
It goes without saying that the IntegralStiftung carries out an analysis before making any detailed offer to a company which is interested in becoming affiliated. This analysis assesses the potential risk which the company represents by examining any losses made over the last five years. The IntegralStiftung does not cross-subsidize by offsetting high-risk affiliated companies against advantageous ones; equally, it does not ‘cherry pick’ among potential affiliated companies. Where it can be proven that pensions being paid out by a company to former employees are sufficiently financed, the IntegralStiftung will take over all obligations.
“And the shark, he has sharp teeth…” We pull them before the shark can bite – by working together with you to implement invalidity prevention measures in your company. We take such measures seriously because they enable us to ensure that everyone benefits equally from reduced losses. Our philosophy of solidarity in this context can be defined as “Reduced losses benefit every insured person equally!”