Radio and television licence fee

Radio and television licence fee rules applicable to diplomatic missions, consular posts and their staff.

Legal basis

The Federal Act on Radio and Television (RTVA) and the applicable implementing Ordinance (RTVO) have been revised and the new provisions take effect on 1 January 2019. The collection of the radio and television licence fee has been entrusted to the Swiss collection agency for the radio and television fee for private households – an independent company named SERAFE AG – from 1 January 2019.

In principle, all persons residing in Switzerland must pay the radio and television licence fee (see Art. 69a of the RTVA). One fee is due per household. Henceforth, households will no longer need to make a declaration, as the fee will be automatically charged by the collection agency.

Who is exempt from the fee?

The following are not required to pay the radio and television licence fee:

  • diplomatic missions and consular posts headed by career consular officers (unless they are undertakings, as set out under Art. 70 RTVA);

  • diplomatic staff, career consular staff, administrative and technical staff and service staff of diplomatic missions, consular posts headed by career consular officers, as well as their family members, if they hold a FDFA legitimation card type 'B', 'C', 'D', 'E', ‘K’ with red stripe, ‘KB’, ‘KC’, ‘K’ with blue stripe, ‘KD’, ‘K’ with purple stripe or ‘KE’ (Art. 61 para. 3 (a) RTVO).

  • Persons entitled to accompany the above-mentioned persons and who enjoy the same status are also exempt (Art. 61 para 3 (c) RTVO).

Above mentioned representations and persons are automatically exempt from the fee. If an exempted person should however receive an invoice, le diplomatic mission or the consular post can report the case to the Protocol.

When a member of a private household meets the conditions for exemption set out in Art. 69b para. 1 (b) RTVA, the fee is waived for all members of the household concerned (Art. 69b para. 2 RTVA). This principle also applies when a family member is a Swiss national, holds a residence permit (B permit) or a permanent residence permit (C permit) or when a private domestic worker with a type 'F' FDFA legitimation card is living in the same household as the main beneficiary. 

Who is subject to the fee?

Other staff members of the diplomatic missions and consular posts, including those of Swiss nationality, will systematically remain subject to the fee. No registration is required.

Staff members of Swiss nationality are never exempted.

Licence fee

As of 1 January 2019, the radio and television licence fee amounts to CHF 365 per year. This fee is invoiced by SERAFE AG and is not subject to VAT.

Für weitere Informationen

Serafe AG
8010 Zurich
Info@serafe.ch 

Federal Office of Communications (OFCOM)
Rue de l’Avenir 44
Case postale 256
2501 Bienne

info@bakom.admin.ch