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Where in Switzerland you can get a one-off payment after having a child

Sandra Sparrowhawk
Sandra Sparrowhawk - [email protected]
Where in Switzerland you can get a one-off payment after having a child
New parents in Switzerland may be entitled to a lump sum payment. Image by RitaE from Pixabay.

While there is no general entitlement to birth and adoption allowances in Switzerland at the federal level, some cantons choose to provide a one-off payment when you welcome a new family member.


In Switzerland, the cantons are free to choose whether to pay the one-time birth or adoption allowance - or not.

However, those cantons that do decide to provide a financial boost to new parents must still follow the legal minimum standards under federal law.

They are as follows:

The Swiss cantons that pay birth and adoption allowances must only pay these out one time per child.

If you are to have multiple children – either by birth or adoption – you will be entitled to a one-off allowance for each child.

Which cantons provide a birth and adoption allowance?


While the majority of Switzerland’s cantons do not provide a one-off birth or adoption payment, nine cantons will gift you a one-time sum if you have recently given birth or adopted a child, while eight cantons will pay out a one-off adoption allowance.

The cantons of Lucerne and Schwyz will pay a birth allowance of 1,000 Swiss francs, but only Lucerne will pay the same amount to adoptive parents. The canton of Schwyz does not offer a financial boost to new parents of an adopted child.

Meanwhile, the cantons of Neuchâtel and Uri will pay 1,200 Swiss francs to both birth and adoptive parents.

New parents residing in the cantons of Fribourg and Jura are entitled to 1,500 Swiss francs whether their child is adopted or not.

The canton of Vaud pays 1,500 Swiss francs amount to both birth and adoptive parents and 3,000 Swiss francs to new parents of multiples (biological or adopted).

The canton of Valais is even more generous with 2,000 Swiss francs paid for the birth of a child or the adoption of one, and 3,000 Swiss francs for multiples.

The situation in Geneva is similar. The canton will pay a birth and adoption allowance of 2,073 Swiss francs to parents welcoming a single child into the family and 3,073 Swiss francs to parents who welcome multiples.

READ MORE: What welfare benefits can you get if you have children in Switzerland?

Who can receive a one-off birth or adoption payment?

The criteria – while vaguely similar – depends on the canton.


In order to receive the allowance in the canton of Lucerne, at least one parent will have to be employed in the canton at the time of the birth or adoption.

It is also possible to receive Lucerne’s birth or adoption allowance if the family allowance is received by another person (e.g. the spouse) in another canton and there is no entitlement to a birth allowance or adoption allowance there.

Likewise, only the employed parent (though not necessarily in Schwyz) can apply to receive the one-off sum in the canton of Schwyz.

In Geneva, the mother must have been domiciled in Switzerland for at least nine months prior to giving birth in order to qualify for the birth or adoption allowance.


The birth allowance will also only be paid out to parents who carry out gainful employment in the canton of Geneva or who reside there.

In Fribourg, Jura, Neuchâtel, Valais, Vaud, and Uri, a parent must be - at the birth or adoption of the child – employed, self-employed or be considered a person without gainful employment.

What about foreign residents?

If you live and work in Switzerland — and therefore pay taxes here — then you have the right to receive a birth or adoption allowance the same way as Swiss citizens.

However, if the mother’s place of residence is abroad and she was only temporarily in Switzerland during the birth, there is no entitlement to a birth or adoption allowance.

This is how you can apply for the birth or adoption allowance

The payments will not come automatically when your child is born or adopted. However, just like with child benefits, the one-off birth and adoption allowance payment is also made by your employer.

Hence, you will have to apply to your employer for the one-time allowance. They will forward your application to the cantonal department in charge of the allowances prior to you receiving the payment.

If you are self-employed or not working at all, contact the family compensation fund for further information.

These are the relevant links in GermanFrench and Italian.

What happens if my child is stillborn or dies during birth?

If your child is stillborn or dies during birth, you are entitled to birth allowance if the pregnancy lasted at least 23 weeks and the mother had had her place of residence or habitual residence in Switzerland for at least nine months at the time of the birth.

Am I entitled to the lump sum if I adopted my partner’s child?

No, you are not entitled to the one-off adoption allowance payment if you choose to adopt your partner’s child.


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