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  1. Hi everyone, I have a(another) dilemma. I am employed part-time (a job I would like to eventually leave) and I am also registered as self-employed as a writer/translator and photographer, for this second activity I have a very small income (well, even for the first one...    I would like to apply to obtain an MA in a discipline I am very interested in, and I have read it is possible to deduct the costs of further studies from the freelance income. My doubts regard the entity of these deductions, I have researched online but, due to my limited German, I am not 100% confident I understood what I read.   1) Is it possible to deduct said costs even if the "Weiterbildung" is in another country, or does the institution have to be in Germany? Is there a limit to the taxes I can deduct? And can I deduct the costs of tuition as well as books, materials and even the cost of travelling to the institution's country to attend my exams?   2) Am I still allowed to deduct these costs if the studies already (to a point) are already linked to my freelance activity, but I believe I would benefit from them as they would give me a greater insight in the subject?   3) What happens if I end up finding a job that has nothing or little to do with these studies? Will the Finanzamt claim this money back? I am asking this because the areas of the studies I want to undertake is not a very lucrative area, I am just very interested and passionate about the subject...   4) One last question: I am married and my husband has a higher income than me. When we do our combined tax declaration later this year (it is the first time for us) will we apply for a deduction of these University costs from our overall income, or do we need to keep our declarations separate?   Many thanks for your help! Have a good day!
  2. Hi all,   A question re: self-employment.   I recently filled out the Fragenbogen zur Steuerliche Erfassung, as I will be starting a business running artistic workshops around my city. It's as simple as it sounds - I purchase materials, sell tickets and run the workshops. The issue is they're artistic workshops and thus when I spoke with the Finanzamt they said they will make the decision internally as to whether I am to be treated as gewerblich or freiberuflich.   I sent in the application and received the following back today - this is the only correspondence I have had from them which indicates that I am able to pay income tax and VAT:   Can anyone tell me what I have been registered as? I thought I would receive something more comprehensive than just this but it appears not.   My main questions are:   1. What category have I fallen into? Am I freiberuflich or gewerblich? 2. Does the small business regulation apply to me (Kleinunternehmer-Reglung)? I remember there being a box on the application but as I was given assistance in filling it out (the guy did it really quick) and as I thought I'd get a more explanatory letter back, I didn't make a copy and thus cannot remember if we ticked it. If it does not look like I do have it, can I change this decision on my application retrospectively? 2b. Does the fact that the letter says Umsatzsteuer mean that I MUST charge VAT? My business model would be a lot more difficult if I had to charge my customers (mostly members of the public who can't claim it back) an additional 19%. If I didn't do that, I would have to swallow the cost. I am extremely unlikely to turnover 17,500 in the first year and 50,000 the year after so I'd rather have the small business rule! 3. I am currently working full time and am being paid on a salary. Does my business venture and my work have anything to do with one another tax-wise?   I'd really appreciate the advice on this as I'm very confused!   Thanks in advance!  
  3. Tax return from abroad

    We are moving out of Germany this month and have to file tax return for 2019 next year. Normally I file the return using Almost always finanzamt sends me the letter to submit the invoices once I file the online return.   I am wondering how this would work when I'll be out of country and no address here next year? I am sure they're going to ask invoices again and all, same process. One option I thought to put my current address in the tax return next year and keep Deutsche mail forwarding, but I won't really like to put my former address as current address.