Surety agreement (incl. notarial authentication)

Under a surety agreement, the surety undertakes as against a creditor to vouch for the obligation of a third party (principal debtor) in the event that the latter does not settle the obligation. A distinction may be made here, in particular, between a simple surety agreement (the surety can be held to account only where the principal debtor is in bankruptcy, has been granted a composition moratorium, or collection of the obligation is otherwise no longer possible) and a joint-and-several surety agreement (the surety can be held to account once collection from the principal debtor was unsuccessful). The surety agreement must be concluded in writing (with respect to the liability amount and joint-and-several liability, even written by hand) and has to be publicly authenticated, insofar as the surety is a natural person and the amount of the surety agreement exceeds CHF 2,000.00. With married sureties and sureties who are registered partners, the spouse or registered partner must also provide his or her written consent to the surety agreement. The surety agreement is dealt with in Arts. 492 et seq. of the Code of Obligations (Obligationenrecht, OR).