The “Agreements” division is responsible for concluding and implementing intergovernmental agreements on the coordination of national social insurance systems. Switzerland has concluded social insurance agreements with over 40 countries. The most important and most comprehensive is the Agreement of the Free Movement of Persons with the EU (Annex II), which links us to the EU Member States and is based on European coordination law. Moreover, there are numerous agreements with individual countries.
The conclusion of agreements serves to prevent the persons affected being disadvantaged in international matters such as the loss of entitlements or double contributions. With this purpose in mind, they govern – among other things – equal treatment with members of the other contracting state, definition of the applicable law (affiliation) and exports.
The division is also responsible for implementation, e.g. concluding special agreements or organising administrative assistance for international social insurance institutions. It is the contact partner for international offices that encounter problems in applying the agreement and ensures uniform implementation of the agreement regulations within Switzerland. Furthermore, it monitors developments in international law (incl. EU law and jurisdiction of the European Court of Justice) and assesses them in terms of their impact on Switzerland. The division also ensures that Swiss legal projects do not conflict with EU coordination law.