At Work in Geneva

Work Usage in Geneva

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The work contract and the work contract of the "Code des obligations" (self employed, convention and benefits, type of work contract) are the two references for all the references related to the questions about labour rules. The law protects the workers in case of sickness or accidents, and in case of harassement.

At the federal level, the following organisations monitor the rules of health and safety at work:

The work contract holds sections to specify the salary, holidays, notice period, etc. The work contract must comply with the code of obligations (code des obligations). The SECO gives a list of conventions valid in most of the cantons.

Weekly work time

The Swiss law fixes the maximal work week to 45 hours for employees working in factories and offices, technical salaries and similar staff. For all other employees, the limit is 50 hours/week. However the week at work is closer to 41h in Swiss companies nowadays. Additional hours must be paid 125%, or if the employee agrees, compensated by a day in lieu.


The minimum given by law is:

  • five weeks for employees and trainees until 20 years old;
  • four weeks for employees and trainees older than 20.

Minimum salary

The Swiss law does not give any minimum salary (however, some conventions or standard contracts set a minimum salary for a specific activity). Most of the welfare care depends on the Canton. Since 2001, there is a minimum income (revenu minimum de réinsertion - RMR), for unemployed people with no allowance.

Update 31/10/2005


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