Country profile


While the term “foundation” is not legally defined in Swiss law, Art. 80 et seqq. Zivilgesetzbuch (ZGB – Swiss Civil Code) provides the legal framework for foundations in Switzerland. According to Art. 80 ZGB the formation of a foundation requires assets being endowed for a specific purpose. It is not possible to transfer the assets back to the founder. Apart from public benefit foundations, there is a variety of foundation types in Switzerland such as ecclesiastical foundations, foundations concerning employee benefits schemes, corporate foundations, family foundations, public law foundations.

Switzerland’s philanthropy profile

€140 billion

Pool of assets

€3.5 billion

Total expenditure

No data

Total employment

Switzerland’s foundations