Before au pairs leave their home country, they should sign an au pair contract together with the host family. The contract will specify the rights and duties of both the au pair and the host family. The contract will regulate the conditions of the au pair stay, length of au pair stay, working hours, holiday entitlement of the au pair, specific details of accommodation, details about the language course and pocket money entitlement, etc..
Au pair employment must comply with the conditions of a normal employment contract for domestic workers in the au pair's canton including conditions for working hours and free time.
Three copies of the contract need to be prepared and signed. The au pair and the host family each receive a compy and the third copy goes to the relevant cantonal immigration and labour market authority.
Termination of the au pair contract
The au pair contract is valid for the duration of the au pair stay. However, it is possible to terminate the contract before its scheduled conclusion, for example if the au pair and host family are not getting along. The Swiss regulations indicate that the contract usually has a month probationary period. During this time, the contract can be terminated with a notice period of 7 days. After the probationary period is over, termination of the au pair contract is only possible when done in writing with a notice period of one month.
In serious cases, the contract can be terminated immediately and thus without a notice period. In these cases, termination must be effected in writing and there must be a legitimate reason for the termination. If the family terminates the contract without serious reasons or without adhering to the notice period, the au pair has a right to their pocket money and non-monetary benefits (or the corresponding amount of the non-monetary benefits until the end of the notice period or until the end of the contract. In such cases, the au pair also has the right to compensation for any damages caused by the unreasonable termination of the contract.