SIX
Dormant accounts

Dormant assets at Swiss banks

On this website you will find information regarding dormant assets held at Swiss banks, for which the last customer contact was at least 60 years ago and the value of which is above CHF 500 or is unknown.

As of 1 January 2015, the Swiss Banking Act, the Banking Ordinance as well as the Guidelines of the Swiss Bankers Association demand that assets of bank clients with a total value exceeding CHF 500 have to be published after having been without contact for 10 years and dormant for another 50 years, e.g. after a total of 60 years. These assets will be liquidated and transferred to the Swiss federal government if no beneficiary has submitted a justified request within a given delay. The procedure also applies to safe deposit boxes with a value of more than CHF 500 or unknown value.

If you believe that you may be entitled to such assets, you can submit a request for them, which will be passed on to the bank concerned. For this purpose, please click on "Publications" and then on the relevant entry. You can then fill out a request form, upload the supporting documents – which in any case must consist of an identification document at least – and send the request. You may also submit a request as the representative of the beneficiary, e.g. as their lawyer.

Please supply as much information as possible. If you do not have any information to enter in a field, leave it blank. Fields marked with an asterisk (*) are required fields and must be completed.

NB: If you do not make any entries for more than 30 minutes when filling out your form, you will have to start again from the beginning. It is therefore recommended that you have all the required documents (identification document, commercial register extract, power of attorney, certificate of inheritance, etc.) to hand before you start. The following formats are supported: .pdf; .jpg; .png; .gif.

The deadline for submitting requests is one year from the date of publication or, in the case of assets for which the last customer contact was in 1954 or earlier, five years.

The bank will examine your request and contact you as soon as possible. Please note that the processing and evaluation of your request may take several weeks/months.

If a request is clearly unfounded, and the person making the claim cannot credibly demonstrate a connection with the assets claimed, the bank may require that person to reimburse the costs incurred by the bank in examining the claim (Article 53 (3) Banking Ordinance).

If no requests have been received by the time the deadline expires, or if the bank finds that the claims made are not justified, the bank must hand over the assets in question to the Federal Finance Administration, in which case all rights of former customers to the assets become null and void.

If you require further information or have questions contact the Central Claims Office of the Swiss Banking Ombudsman.

Central Claims Office: Swiss Banking Ombudsman, Bahnhofplatz 9, CH-8021 Zurich, tel: +41 43 266 14 16

For further information on dormant accounts at Swiss banks go to www.swissbanking.org.