Main elements of the Agreement between Switzerland and the United Kingdom on the Rights of Citizens in the field of Social Security
The aim of the agreement is to ensure that everything will be as now for the persons covered by the FMOPA and that the acquired rights will be protected.
Regulations (EC) No 883/2004 and (EC) No 987/2009 shall continue to apply:
- Nationals of Switzerland and EU states residing and working in the United Kingdom on 31.12.2020
- British nationals who live and work in Switzerland on 31.12.2020
- Nationals of Switzerland and EU states residing in Switzerland and working in the United Kingdom on the 31.12.2020
- Nationals of the United Kingdom and EU states residing in the United Kingdom and working in Switzerland on the 31.12.2020
For these persons, nothing changes as long as they are in a cross-border situation, i.e. as long as there is a connection to both states with regard to the nationality, activity or residence. Cross-border situations in which there is also a link with EU states are also protected, this covers situations other than those mentioned above.
Regulations (EC) No 883/2004 and No 987/2009 continue to apply to: certain persons who are not or no longer in a cross-border situation if they have the right to work or reside in the other State. These are, for example, Swiss nationals who go on working in the United Kingdom at the end of their posting or those who give up their employment in the United Kingdom and continue to reside there.
In concrete terms, this means the following concerning cross-border situations which started before 01.01.2021:
The same State remains competent for social security, collects contributions and provides benefits without discrimination. A1 forms concerning the applicable social security legislation for assignments started before 01.01.2021 remain valid for the duration of the cross-border situation or until the expiry date indicated on the document.
The Mitteilung an die AHV-Ausgleichskassen und EL-Durchführungsstellen Nr. 430 (available in German, French and Italian) explains the protection of acquired rights in the areas of applicable legislation and first pillar benefits.
Access to health care is guaranteed on a non-discriminatory basis. In the case of residence in the other State, there is still a right to health care at the expense of the competent State. The rights linked to the European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) are maintained for stays (holidays, studies, etc.) in the other country; however, in order to assert the protection of rights in practice, a specific Provisional Replacement Certificate must be requested from the Swiss health insurer.
Cross-border workers, recipients of a Swiss pension or of a Swiss unemployment insurance benefit and posted workers residing in the United Kingdom remain subject to health insurance in Switzerland.
For tourists and students staying in the UK on 31.12.2020, the rights linked to the European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) are maintained for the duration of their stay. However, it is not sufficient to present the EHIC when undergoing medical treatment in the UK after 31.12.2020. A specific Provisional Replacement Certificate covering treatment in the United Kingdom from that date must be requested from the Swiss health insurer.
Pensioners who receive a pension from one State on 31.12.2020 and who reside in the other State and are entitled to reimbursement of healthcare provided by the State paying the pension are still entitled to this reimbursement. Persons who are entitled to a pension based on the aggregation of insurance periods from both countries are still subject to the rules laid down in Regulations (EC) No 883/2004 and (EC) No 987/2009 concerning sickness insurance.
Planned treatments started before 31.12.2020 may be continued after this date and will be reimbursed.
The Federal Office of Public Health's communication of 8 December 2020 provides detailed information (available in German and French):