Summer job


The summer job is often the first step into the professional world for young employees. In principle, they have the same duties and rights as other employees. However, this is not always the case.


As soon as the young employee actually starts working for the employer, the employment relationship is established. This principle applies even if the parties have not concluded a written employment contract.


The employer is sometimes tempted to call the summer job a mandate, to avoid paying social security contributions. In most cases, this will be an abusive situation. The employer takes risks.


Many companies offer unpaid summer jobs. In this situation, the employer is often committing an abuse of rights.

Social security contributions

In principle, employees who work on a summer job are subject to the same social security contributions as their colleagues. However, certain insurances depend on the age of the employee, his/her annual income or the number of weekly working hours. Both the employer and the employee will be exempt from paying contributions to certain insurances.

Incapacity to work

In principle, the employee must show a certain loyalty to his/her employer before being entitled to his salary in case of incapacity to work. In principle, this is not the case for summer jobs.


Summer jobs are sometimes of very short duration. Does the employee have the right to a holiday? How should the employer handle this situation?


If the employee works overtime, this must be compensated appropriately. Beware! When the employee is particularly young, the daily working time is limited.

Working hours

During the summer, some companies, especially in the restaurant or event industry, remain open in the evening, at night, on Sundays or on public holidays. The employer must be vigilant. These hours are prohibited or subject to conditions for younger employees.

In certain situations, the employer may not employ the worker at night, on Sundays or in dangerous jobs.

Foreign trainees

Switzerland is a privileged destination for foreign trainees. Like all foreign workers, they must obtain a work permit. The system is however facilitated for trainees. 

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