From the first of January following their twentieth birthday, Swiss and foreign students with legal residence in Switzerland must pay 480 francs a year (minimum contribution) into the  Age and Surviving Dependants' insurance, Disability insurance, and Military Income Loss insurance fund. Students in paid employment must pay from the first of January following their seventeenth birthday, Students who earn an income or obtain a military income loss insurance payment, from which contributions of less than 480 francs (minimum contribution) are deducted, can have these contributions credited to them: they need then only pay the difference from the minimum contribution.

Detailed information regarding obligatory contributions can be obtained from the following office:


Ausgleichkasse des Kantons Bern

Zweigstelle der Stadt Bern

Schwanengasse 14

CH-3011 Bern

T +41 31 321 61 11



Student contributions into the Age and Surviving Dependants' insurance, Disability insurance, and Military Income Loss insurance fund (German)

Sickness and accident insurance

All persons resident in Switzerland must insure themselves with a Swiss health insurance fund, regardless of their nationality. Anyone taking up residence in Switzerland has three months in which to arrange insurance. The insurance must, however, be retroactive to the date of arrival in Switzerland. Students, higher education teaching staff and researchers staying in Switzerland for a limited time and able to show proof of equivalent insurance protection in their own country may submit a written “application for exemption from the insurance requirement”.


Exemption in individual cases will be decided by the Bern Office for Social Insurance and Supervision of Foundations. An application form can be requested from the address below.

Amt für Sozialversicherung und Stiftungsaufsicht

Abteilung für Prämienverbilligung und Obligatorium

Forelstrasse 1

CH-3072 Ostermundigen

T +41 31 633 72 04



The compulsory health insurance in Switzerland - Your questions, our answers (FOPH)


Private personal liability insurance

Private personal liability insurance is not obligatory. It can, however, be very useful, as it applies to harm done to third parties, whether this occurs, for example, in sport, as a pet owner or as a tenant. Payments are made on the basis of current value of objects at the time the damage occurs. Corresponding private personal liability insurance coverage is recommended.

Household contents insurance

Household contents insurance is not obligatory. However, this voluntary insurance covers damage to household property. For the most part, policies of this kind cover losses arising out of fire and water damage and theft. Usually payments are made on a replacement value basis, i.e. the amount that would be required to buy a new article.

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