The most important conditions and information for parties filing electronic submissions (e.g. appeals, requests for time limit extensions, or statements and accompanying documents) with the Federal Administrative Court in accordance with Art. 21a of the Federal Act on Administrative Procedures (APA) and the rules and procedures of the Federal Administrative Court of 16 June 2020 Implementing Regulations of 16 June 2020 on Electronic Communications with Parties (EC-FAC , SR 173.320.6) are summarised below.
The EC-FAC does not apply to lower instances. Therefore, failing a legal basis, lower instances cannot validly transmit their submissions by e-mail until further notice.
Notwithstanding, treaty law and special statutory provisions may apply (see for example Art. 55 para. 1bis of the Federal Act of 6 October 2000 on General Aspects of Social Security Law [GSSLA, SR 830.1] for proceedings under this Act; Art. 9 para. 2bis of the Federal Act of 6 October 1995 on the Internal Market [IMA, SR 943.02] which provides that party status may be granted to a lower instance).
The full binding formal and substantive requirements for electronic submissions by parties are set forth in the relevant legal bases (see list of important acts at the bottom of this page).
Before filing an electronic document with the Court within the set time limit, a party or their representative must:
1. have a valid qualified electronic signature (for information on the recognised providers, see under this link),
2. have the necessary software for creating and signing PDF files, and
3. be registered with a recognised delivery platform, currently IncaMail or PrivaSphere, which they can use for the transmission of documents to the official address of the Federal Administrative Court (firstname.lastname@example.org).
! For queries or issues concerning the acquisition and use of electronic signatures, the creation of PDF files, or the use of the delivery platforms, please contact the relevant provider.
To file electronic submissions (e.g. appeals, requests for time limit extensions, or statements and accompanying documents), parties must comply with the following procedure:
1. All documents to be submitted to the court by e-mail must be produced in PDF format. They must be clearly named and numbered if required (e.g. Appeal.pdf, Enclosure.pdf, statement1.pdf, statement2.pdf).
2. PDF documents requiring a signature must bear the valid qualified electronic signature of the submitting party or their representative.
3. The PDF documents must be sent to the official address of the Federal Administrative Court (email@example.com) via IncaMail or PrivaSphere within the set time limit, ideally via eGov registered mail.
! e-mails that do not comply with these formal requirements are not valid.
Further important information:
! Parties must in any event communicate their place of residence or registered office in Switzerland (postal address) to the Court. If direct service of documents in the relevant country is permitted by international law or by the competent foreign body, a party need only provide an address for service abroad.
! Receipts serving as proof of timely transmission (Art. 21a para. 3 APA and Art. 6 EC-FAC ) are only issued for certain types of transmission (usually eGov registered mail) by the delivery platforms. Moreover, the maximum transmissible data volume of the delivery platform must be observed. If you have any questions, please contact the platform provider.
! The substantive requirements for appeals under Art. 52 para. 1 APA must be complied with.
! It’s still possible and permissible in accordance with the APA to file submissions and the relevant accompanying documents in hard copy with the Federal Administrative Court within the set time limit, for example by post or by remitting the documents to a Swiss representation abroad.
! Court documents (e.g. interim decisions, judgments, notifications) produced by the Federal Administrative Court are delivered to the parties in non-electronic form, usually by post.