Loss of earnings allowances

Loss of earnings insurance

Historically, loss of earnings insurance is an insurance that was first introduced to guarantee an income to employees who had to perform military service. This insurance was later extended to cover the income of women during maternity leave. It is financed equally by the employer and the employee.

Maternity leave

Since July 2005, young mothers have been receiving loss of earnings allowances, which enables them to have an assured income during maternity leave. In principle, only women who are gainfully employed are entitled to these loss-of-earnings allowances (APG). Under certain conditions, young mothers who are unemployed or off work will also receive this benefit.

Some cantons have a more favourable regime for young mothers. They relax the conditions for granting loss-of-earnings allowances or grant them maternity allowances for a longer period.

The right to loss-of-earnings benefits arises when the woman gives birth to a live child. Under certain conditions, the employee will also be entitled to this benefit when the child is stillborn.

For reasons of cost control, this loss of earnings allowance does not cover the employee's full salary. Because of the ceiling on the amount of the allowance, female managers are particularly penalised. The question of whether the employer is obliged to supplement the salary of his employees when they are on maternity leave is particularly sensitive.


leave Paternity leave was adopted by the Swiss people in September 2020. It will come into force on 1 January 2021. This paternity leave provides that fathers will be able to take leave within a certain period after the birth of their child. They will receive a daily allowance for loss of earnings which covers part of their salary during paternity leave.

Care leave

Sometimes an employee's child becomes seriously ill or has a serious accident.

From 1 July 2021, employees will be entitled to leave and loss-of-earnings benefits to take care of their seriously ill child. This leave is for a few weeks and can be shared between the mother and father of the child. It must be taken within a certain period calculated from the first day of leave granted.

The employee will be protected against dismissal for a limited period of time.

Covid-19 pandemic

During an epidemic or pandemic, authorities sometimes take drastic decisions to try to stop the spread of disease. Quarantine, closure of schools, confinement of vulnerable people... These are all measures that have been put in place, particularly during the COVID-19 pandemic that has particularly affected Switzerland.

Many employees were unable to work. To mitigate the financial consequences of the pandemic, the authorities granted loss of earnings allowances in certain situations. 

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1 Mar, 2010 byMarianne Favre Moreillon