As a general rule, workers from abroad (Expatriates), are also subject to German tax law without restriction, if they have registered their place of residence in Germany. Anyone who is fully taxable in Germany must pay taxes like everyone else. In doubt, this also means that expats also have to submit an tax declaration. However, it is also worthwhile for those who have not been obliged to declare their taxes.
Due Date for your tax return: 31st May
After the end of a calender year, every taxpayer has to submit their tax return until 31st May of the following year. If you hire a tax consultant the deadline extends on 31st December. For certain reasons, this period may be extended up to 31st December. Our tax consutlant can proof, if a prolongation up to seven years ist possible.
Costs to reduce the income tax
Generally speaking, German tax law distinguishes I. “Werbungskosten” (income-related expenses) as well as II. “Sonderausgaben” (special expenses). While the first ones can be completely deducted from the related income, the deduction of the so called „Sonderausgaben“ is limited in type and amount.
For filing your tax return we need:
“Werbungskosten” (income-related expenses)
- all documents concerning the costs in question
- travel costs
- relocation costs
- double household costs
- Trip costs for business trips
- Expenditures for job-specific literature
- Expenditures for typical office equipment
- costs for language courses
- continuing education costs
“Sonderausgaben” (special expenses).
- Costs for insurances
- Contribution receipts
- Cost for childcare
Especially in cases where you are not quite sure, if an invoice is deductible, it is helpful to ask our tax consultants/advisors and send these invoices to us, so it is easier for us to judge it. In general, you can send us your documents in copy as pdf-file or the physical documents via mail.
How much money does the finance office refund me?
The amount of the refund is individual for each tax payer. From our experience, expatriates with an annual income of € 100.000 gross receive about € 10.000 back.
expatriates taxpayer registration form
Tax returns are settled in Germany by completing the necessary tax forms and handing them over to the Finance Office. However, German tax law is one of the most complicated in the world. Many expenses, allowances, etc., which are tax-deductible to the respective taxpayer, are not known to the taxpayers. In order not to give away any money, it is advisable to hire a tax consultant. The tax consultant is a trusted person of the taxpayer and represents his client in his tax affairs matters. Moreover, it is more relaxed to leave everything to the tax advisor, as you save a lot of time and headaches.
Costs for a tax return and compensation
In Germany, only registrired tax consultants are allowed to prepare the tax return for taxable. The costs are regulated by law (german „Steuerberatervergütungsverordnung“) and it depend on the income an other information. For taxables with an income of € 80k-100k the fee to prepare the tax return is about € 800-1.000 inkluding VAT.
Contact our German Tax Consultants & Advisor in Bonn and Cologne
If you have any questions and especially in cases where you are not quite sure whether we can help you or not, please get in contact with us and we will help you in all your tax problems regarding German taxation. Furthermore we have special expertise in international tax law.
You can contact out Tax Consultant by e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone in Bonn: +49 228 299 748-10 oder Cologne: +49 221 999 832-10