Social benefits before social assistance

Means-tested social benefits upstream of social assistance are social benefits that belong to social assistance in the broader sense. According to the principle of subsidiarity they precede economic social assistance (social assistance in the narrow sense).

Means-tested social benefits upstream of social assistance comply with the principle of purpose - i.e. a need must be proven - and they are entirely or partially governed and funded by the cantons. Some means-tested social benefits upstream of social assistance are present in all cantons while others are restricted to certain cantons.

Consequently each canton has its own way of guaranteeing the subsistence of its inhabitants. The inventory of social assistance in a broader sense gives an overview of the support provided by each canton.

Indicators about social benefits before social assistance
Indicator   Year
Ratio of supplementary benefit recipients among all AVS/AHV/IV/AI beneficiaries 16.5% 2017
Share of supplementary benefit recipients in homes 22.1% 2017
Share of advance alimony payment recipients in Switzerland 48900 2017
Ratio of advance alimony payment in Switzerland 0,61% 2017
Sources: FSO, Statistics on social assistance recipients, 2018; FSIO, Supplementary benefits statistics

Statistical sources and concepts

On this topic

Alimony advances

Children entitled to maintenance receive advance maintenance payments if the parent obliged to pay maintenance fails to make payments or does not make them in full or on time.

Supplementary Benefits

Supplementary benefits may be claimed when old-age or invalidity pensions and other income are not sufficient to meet minimal living costs. They are given to people living in Switzerland.

Contact

Federal Statistical Office Section Social Analyses and Section Social Welfare
Espace de l'Europe 10
CH-2010 Neuch√Ętel
Switzerland

info.social@bfs.admin.ch

Tel
+41 58 463 64 21

Remark

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https://www.bfs.admin.ch/content/bfs/en/home/statistics/social-security/social-assistance/recipients-social-benefits/social-benefits-before-social-assistance.html