ElStAM for the Arbeitgeber

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Hi everyone, it's 2am and can't sleep, the questions drive me mad.

Looking for some light in the dark... Any info would be gladly appreciated.


For the last 3 months,i employ 16 people under "Kurzfristige Beschäftigung" Minijob. They make way more than 450 euros a month and work not more than 70 non consecutive days. So far i have been dealing with the Minijobzentrale with reporting and paying.

Havent realized until recently the Tax office is also a partner...


I understand that there are two ways to tax this as far as the Finanzamt is concerned:

1. I pay 25% lump sum for all the employees earnings (which i dont want to do)

2. I withhold from each employee's salary a certain amount, relative to their earning and pay it to the Finanzamt.

They should be getting a full refund of that tax from the Finanzamt, providing they do not earn more than 8.000 Euros a year.



1. If i pay the 25% lump sum on top of my employee's wages - could I get a refund from the Finanzamt? (probably not, right?)

2. I use this online calculator to calculate how much individual tax i must withhold from the employee's salary.

is it any good in your opinion? https://www.instaff.jobs/arbeitsrecht/kurzfristige-beschaeftigung-lohnsteuer

3. Connected to the above - I started educating myself about ElstAM . i requested an Arbeitgeber authentication key and started examining the forms. What i don't understand - do I have to calculate the wages tax amount myself?

or is it calculated automatically within the form?


For example - when i fill in the quarterly VAT declaration, i type in the numbers and Elster calculates automatically how much i VAT i have to pay the Finanzamt back. it shows in the bottom line automatically.

Haven't seen anything like this on Elster/Elstam when it comes to calculating wages tax.

For example: in Lohnsteuerbescheinigung form - there is nothing automatic, i have to fill it all by myself and by my own calculation?

I also didn't see where to declare to the Finanzamt that this is a short term employment.


4. I am employing people since January and so far have not paid ANY tax from their salaries at all to the Finanzamt (I did pay Tax to the Minijobzentrale like U1, U2 and Inso).

Also - i didn't register any employee yet on Elstam

(again -  i realized by pure chance that i have to report to the Finanzamt. i assumed reporting to the Minijobzentrale was enough)

Am i in big trouble now? or even worse - are my employees??


i called the Finanzamt today and tried to explain the situation and get advice and the woman kept saying - please contact a Steuerberater.

Yes i know!!! that's what i am supposed to do  - and i probably will one day

but first i want to *understand* it myself, to educate myself, even do the process myself, and give it to a Steuerberater later.


so how could i solve it with the Finanzamt? is it possible to pay retroactively? will i have to pay a penalty?

Would love to hear your opinion and advice


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