Most cantons levy a gift tax. The purpose of this tax is to prevent taxpayers from avoiding other types of tax, in particular inheritance tax, by giving their assets away.
A gift tax is levied, for example, on:
Gifts of money above a certain value
Gifts of real estate
Gifts of valuables, such as works of art
Gratuitous transfers of insurance benefits that become due during the policyholder's lifetime
Advances on inheritances
Assignments or waivers of rights (e.g. rights of use).
Gift tax must be paid by the person who receives a gift.
Normally, spouses and registered partners and their descendants (children and grandchildren) do not have to pay tax on gifts to each other. Gifts to stepchildren and foster children are also exempt from the tax, but only in those cantons where they have the same status as biological children.
In most cantons, you must report the gift to the cantonal tax administration within a certain period without having to be asked to do so.
For further information please contact the tax authorities in your canton of residence.
The tax rate and thus the tax usually depends on:
the value of the asset received as a gift
and/or the degree of relationship of the person making the gift to the person receiving the gift: the more closely they are related, the lower the tax rate.
If you make a gift to a charitable organisation, you can, in certain cases, deduct all or part of the amount donated in your tax return. You can find more on this in the information on the tax return
For information on gift tax, contact the tax administration of the canton in which the donor resides. Cantonal tax authorities - Gift tax
If you receive real estate as a gift, then you should contact the commune in which the property is located.
Documentation of the Federal Tax Administration (Dossier Tax Information and Tax Folders).
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