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  1. Hi,  I'm an EU National (not british). I just moved to Germany from London two weeks ago. Here I have a 3 year contract to work at the university (as a public employee) but I want to do some side-work on top of that. While I was in the UK I registered as a sole trader (which here is the equivalent of Freiberufler I believe) and I already had a small contract with a company for this work. My plan now is to basically fly back to London about once a month and work there 1,2 days and charge the clients. The income generated from the freelance activity (IT-related stuff) is smaller than 17k euros/year, which means here I would qualify as a Kleinunternehmer I believe.    So, some questions:  1. Since I'm resident of both countries (my boyfriend still lives in the UK and we have an apartment together), if I carry out the work in the UK but I'm not there 183 days a year, can I still pay taxes for the income generated in UK in UK? I'm essentially trying to avoid registering here for the Finanzamt as a Kleinunternehmer and doing the taxes here, solely because I find it much much easier to handle/file taxes in the UK (in english).  2. If the answer to q1 is no, am I right in my assumption that here I would be a Kleinuntenehmer, even though the total yearly income from my main work (as public employee at Uni) summed with my freelance work exceeds 17k/year?  2.1. If I have to register as Kleinunternehmer, when I file for taxes at the end of the year do I have to include in my statements the money I receive from my main work as well and treat all income as a whole?  2.2. I read already that there is this ELSTER system that allows you to file taxes online and it's the official online thing from the Finanzamt and it's what many freelancer use. But I also found these other websites (, steuergo etc). Are these other websites able to handle freelancer activities as well or are the for tax returns of normal employees only? I ask because I saw these are in english, so they would be easier to work with.    Thanks for the answers. I really scanned most forum entries here and I now have some basic understanding of how Germany does taxes, I just wanted to make sure I understand things correctly. (In UK, it's much easier, but I might be biased given my english is better than my german and tax-speak in german is very complex from my POV).    
  2. Hi all -   Will be grateful if you could help me clarify some tax matters as it seems the impact is quite significant. I'm trying to understand a bit better what this impact is.   Context -   I have been working in Germany since 5-6 years and had various jobs at different levels in multinationals. In 2018 I got a job with an American company (HQ Silicon valley), office in Germany. As part of the compensation package, I got stock options.   1.5 years later, I decided to change jobs and was offered the chance to buy my options. These costed ca. $24k to exercise. The company did an IPO recently with +75% growth in the first 7 days which is amazing. Nevertheless, due to process being closed around the IPO I could only exercise few days after the event (July 2019), which made me end up with a realised taxable income of $ 111,000 (total net worth of stock is $135,000 - acquisition cost of $24,000 = ca. $111,000 to be taxed).   detail: I am not able to sale the stock for the next 6 months as it is locked in a lock-out period (common practice in tech companies), thus have no access to these funds for 5 more months. According to German tax law, any exercise of options is taxable as income. As I left the company before exercising the options, they couldn't collect the tax via payroll thus it will be reported to the Finanzamt by my ex employer and I will need to include the 'income' in my tax return 2019 (done in 2020).   Now, given the amount of $111,000 or ca. EUR 100,000, the rough taxes applicable are 42% (normal income tax) = ca. EUR 42.000. This is a very large amount and I want to understand whether I can reduce it by using 'Werbungskosten'.   I paid the tuition for my MBA degree in 2019 ca. EUR 60.000 that are considered 'Werbungskosten' (unlimited to be applied as part of tax return for 2nd degree):   In this way, my 2019 income will be ca. EUR 190,000 consisting of EUR 90,000 employment salary and EUR 100,000 taxable stock option income.   Questions (I will highly appreciate your support to clarify):   1) Can I offset the EUR 60,000 Uni cost against the total income of EUR 190,000 (this includes the stock options EUR 100,000). In this way, If I take out the taxable employment income (for which I pay tax as part of payroll) of EUR 90,000, then the rest is EUR 100,000 - 60,000 = EUR 42,000 that is taxable on 42%? or roughly EUR 16.800 taxes (instead of the EUR 42,000 initially requested from the exercised options).   2) My tax rate is ca. 36% (as I have private insurance), so probably will be even less than EUR 16,800... I assume the 42% tax rate include the social contributions and healthcare... the actual lohnsteuer is less than the 42%? not sure if I can apply the 36% as taxable rate than the 42%.   3) Do I have time to report all these costs (University tuition and stock options taxable income) in my 2019 tax return which is to be prepared by the end of 2020 so that I get the benefit of the 'Werbungskosten', or probably the Finanzamt will ask me to pay the EUR 42.000 income tax before the end of this year?   It is a bit strange how they make you pay income tax on something you never had access to...   Thanks a lot for your support!        
  3. miniGmbH profits

    Obvious pro of a miniGmbH is that it is much less paperwork than a full GmbH.  It seems that two major limitations are that  1) @ 100K€ in profits, the miniGmbH is required to become a GmbH (which requires much more paperwork) and 2) capital can only be accrued in cash.       1) Could a miniGmbH simply and prudently continually spend its 'profits' at year's end, making sure that profits are non-existent?  Don't all corps try to minimize profits so that they can pay less taxes anyway?  Simple example would be employee bonus, but there are unlimited creative ways to spend all revenue if employee bonuses don't count or something like that.   2) Does that mean that miniGmbH cannot have, eg a company-owned car, warehouse, or plane?  They could simply rent those, however, correct?  Makes the company more quick-on-its-feet anyway, however, as spacex was able to simply not renew the lease to the port of los angeles.  If spacex had owned the spot, they'd be stuck with more work in an industry they're not trying to focus on.  It does sound like real estate and certain other industries would be out-of-bounds for miniGmbH's, however.   Side note on 2): what's defined as cash?  Could company accumulate assets in usd, yen, and crypto, or only euros?   
  4. I just moved to Stuttgart two weeks ago.   1. Sept (or close to that) I will start work at a German subsidiary of a multinational.  Paid here in Euros.   I'd like to talk to a tax advisor who works with clients who are Americans working in Germany.  I want to start a relationship now so I'm prepared when April rolls around.  I'm not someone to do things last minute.   I have 3 businesses in the US that will continue unchanged and I'll have my salary here.  I think I've heard that the first 90K or so Euros earned in Germany are tax free in the US but I'll have to pay taxes on the amount over 90K.  But where do I put that on my US taxes?  I've used turbotax in the past for all my taxes.  Can I put it in there?   Like I said, just want to get in front of these questions before it gets last minute.   Let me know if someone has had this experience and knows someone who I could talk to!   Keri
  5. I currently work for a Germany company and I live here. I will change my current contract with the same company from a permanent position to a free lancer and I will be payed by working day. The company knows that I will be moving to Brazil and asked me to leave my bank account opened here so they can deposit my wage on it. The part where I will transfer the money to Brazil and pay taxes there I have figured out.   My questions are: 1. Do I have to inform the German government about this? Fill taxes or something similar? Or since I won't be registered in Germany nobody cares? 2. Related to my bank account, I just need to update my address to my Brazilian one and that is it?   Thank you for taking the time to help.  
  6. Hello,   I've tried the search function, but strangely haven't found an answer to something I thought would have been asked here before. I have received my tax bill for 2017, it's 1,270euro, which isn't a lot to some people, but it is to me right now, I had some unexpected dental work that had to be done that my insurance didn't cover, so all my savings went on that  - when it rains it pours or whatever.    I want to know if I can pay it in instalments? I can't find any info on this anywhere strangely. I don't want to pay and go into my overdraft as that will mess up my schufa I assume and I want to buy an apartment in the next few years.    Thank you in advance to this wonderful community.   Best Wishes
  7. I see a lot of excellent threads on filling in the Mantelbogen ESt 1V form but it seems this has been replaced by the Hauptvordruck form in Elster? It seems more in depth than the Mantelbogen. This is my first time filing and I could use some help. Is there a guide on this form?   Specifically, is this the form where pension insurance and health insurance payments are declared? Or will that be in Anglage N? What about employment expenses like commuting and home office deduction?   Thanks!
  8. OK, I searched for a bit, but couldn't find anything recent with my situation. Apologies if a double post...   I am an American, working in Landshut for a German Company as a full time, regular employee, w/ an unlimited contract. I have a Blue Card in process.   A former business partner of mine has asked me to be a (small) shareholder in an LLC he is forming in the US. This is a business that will only be working in the Pacific Northwest, no work in Germany.    I have a few questions - it seems the most recent tax implications for a US LLC are... unclear? If the US LLC income is well below the DTT threshold, how does it get recorded in Germany? What are the tax implications? Is it a bigger headache than it is worth?   My total salary here in Germany falls below the double taxation treaty, and I imagine any income derived from the LLC will still keep me below that threshold.   Any thoughts on this would be greatly appreciated.   Thanks!  
  9. Finanzamt Payment Plan ???

    Has anyone got the finanzamt to give them a payment plan? I have a large tax big... larger than most people's gross income.. I just emailed them asking if they would agree .. any insight anybody? 
  10. Do I have to pay taxes from the VAT I charge?

    Hello,   I am hoping someone can help with my question. Do I have to pay taxes from the VAT I charge and pay to the Finanzamt every 3 months? Because I was told to add it as an income in my yearly Gewinn calculation.   Thanks in advance!
  11. Dear forum -   I have a "simple" tax question. I live in Germany and receive my income as an employee from a German company. I have filed taxes in the past, but I am drawing a blank as to how I got to a specific number.   My plan is to use the Foreign Earned Income Exclusion, and I've got a bit left over for the first time, so I would like to use a Tax Credit to cover that, since I have paid my German taxes like a good citizen. I'd prefer not to use a tax professional for various reasons, if possible.   What taxes from my Steuerbescheid can / should I use at the bottom of Form 1116 (Part II) when I list the German taxes that I paid, which I imagine will be higher than the tax due from the US?   Thanks in advance, Boris 
  12. Hi all,   I have a question about German tax consequences for a U.S. irrevocable trust. I am the only person in my family living in Germany – the rest of my family lives in the US. My father (grantor) sent up an irrevocable trust this past year, in which me and my brother are named both as Co-Trustees and Co-Beneficiaries. I am wondering when and what taxes I might owe in Germany in my role as Co-Trustee and/or Co-Beneficiary.   My impression is that I am liable for German gift-tax or inheritance tax when I receive money from the trust as a beneficiary. However, I am really unclear about whether I have any tax obligations to the German government as a result of being a Co-Trustee.   I am pretty sure that, from the perspective of German law, the irrevocable trusts counts as a “Vermögensmasse ausländischen Rechts, deren Zweck auf die Bindung von Vermögen gerichtet ist”, but I am lost as to if and how this effects my tax obligations as a Co-Trustee of the trust living in Germany.   Any help or advice would be much appreciated!  I am not even sure of whether their question is better directed at a lawyer or a tax advisor.   Thanks!
  13. Hi,    I would greatly appreciate some information regarding my tax situation for year 2018. Over the course of the year i had 3 different sources of income:   Freelance cleaning Gewerbe from January to November 2 months employment in November and December Freelance massage Gewerbe from September to the end of the year (still current)   I am familiar with Elster and used it to file my taxes last year (2017). I would appreciate if some one could tell me which forms i would need to fill in for my situation. Will i need to separate Gewerbe tax forms? And a separate one for my earnings from employment? Thanks in advance.     Kind regards,     Fred    
  14. Can anyone offer advice for dealing with a hostile tax firm, or know of a government commission that oversees tax advisers and perhaps could help us?  Here's the situation: We arrived in Munich in 2017, so in 2018, we had to file our first German tax return as well as a U.S. return. My German husband asked his colleagues for Steuerberater recommendations, but the ones they suggested were all booked, so in April 2018, he hired one of the large firms. The accountant assigned to us really took her time, and on Oct. 3, my husband suffered a ruptured blood vessel in his brain. He had three surgeries, suffered memory problems and lost vision in one eye. A few days after the aneurysm, I notified the accountant in an email (I can write and read German but really am not up to discussing tax issues in German), but she didn't bother to reply to me and apparently did no further work on the return until my husband got home from the hospital Dec. 14. He tried to deal with it then but allowed the firm to file the return on Dec. 31. They charged us 2,100 Euros but, when we complained, they took off 300 Euros. Later, with his father and some tax software, my husband went over the return and found that the accountant had done a sloppy job. He's been trying to get her to correct the return, which apparently has antagonized this large firm, because last week they "fired'' us, and yesterday we got an additional bill for 3,000 Euros.  We don't know what to do. Any suggestions? We really appreciate any help you can offer.
  15. I have a permanent job in Germany since 2015 and I don't do other work activities as self-employed or Freelancing. However, I have an account on a freelancing website and a friend of mine uses this account to acquire micro projects from this website.  The project costs are transferred to my bank account because it is in my account on this website.  My question is that since I don't do anything in these projects and I don't get money, should I pay taxes just because the account and address are mines? His total income for 2017 is around 400€ and  245€ for 2018. so it is pretty low income and I already declared my taxes for 2017.  should I stop him from using this account or ask him to write me a letter that he is using this account? should I inform the taxes office or I might involve my self in a more complex situation?
  16. Freelancing after losing job

    Hello,   I am a European citizen that has been working in Germany for the last 11 years, always fully employed. I recently lost my job, and after an interview for a new job, the employer asked me to work for them as a freelancer for a month, with the plan that if it works out, it becomes a full-time position. They want me to start right away. How do I go about this? I never freelanced before. I am in a delicate position because I am a single parent and have no help, but I would love to avoid going into unemployment.   Thank you in advance for any advice.
  17. Hello, in 2017 I found an UG company (as kleinunternehmer) for a possible freelancing opportunities but then I found a full time job before I do any activities on this UG. I learned at that time that I must hire a tax advisor to fill the yearly tax declaration and I'm not allowed to do it by myself. And since then I'm with FreeFibu and paying around 78EUR per month (there is zero activities on this UG company). However, I learned recently, that if I the UG was registered as a (kleinunternehmer) then I am allowed to fill tax declaration by myself (Through Elster) since there is no activities. So, I would like to know if I'm allowed to do it myself or it shall be done only through a tax advisor. Thanks in advance.
  18. Taxes liability while working from UK

    Hi,   Sorry for my lack of knowledge. I wanted to understand about tax implications when resident in UK but remotely employed for German company(and paid salary in Germany). I am exploring idea of working from UK for a German employer. My questions were:- 1. Will my entire tax be deducted in UK only and can I avail NHS benefits? 2. Will there be any liability for Krankenkasse/Pension/Unemployment insurance payments in Germany? 3. Do employer still need to pay their part for krankenkasse? Any other thing worth to mention..   I am not worried about visa implications as I am German national.    Thanks for the insights.
  19. Redo / amend Taxes

    Hey,   I sent my steuerberater this question in an email, but until he replies back, I would love info from the community.  My tax bill was f^%king massive. I didn't expect it to be so large.. I have up to €15.000 in business expenses that I didn't deduct from my gross income. Is it possible in Germany to amend your tax declaration after it's already processed? I'm not feeling too optimistic at the moment, but any feedback would be great. 
  20. Hello there, moved back to Berlin from the UK and need to file some taxes, its been a while - 8 years that I was away and was completely out of the German tax system with moving January to Berlin, and having accepted a German based contract in November 2017, I was back in Berlin living and working since January 2018, full year of income -- anyone have decent advisors who can also help deal with the UK side (I filed taxes there and actually got a return in UK already) , just want to sort out any double taxation that might occur in Germany    I am based in Mitte and it seems its really hard to find a decent tax advisor at the moment in Berlin, either not enough staff or all booked out...   Tips appreciated