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English speaking accountants in Berlin

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Hi, sorry for hijacking your post, but I have a question that is somehow related to the latest conversation about tax deductions.

 

Lets suppose I am a freelancer.

I buy x articule, paint it and sell it again for a higher price. So whatever I pay for x is a cost of doing business, correct?

So, I buy x for $100, paint it (suppose paint is free of cost) and sell it for $120. I sell only once on a given year.

So at the end of the year I go to the tax office and I say: my sales are $120, but my cost was $100, so the tax I need to pay is for the $20 profit only. Again assume I have nothing to deduct from tax.

So my question/problem is: my provider selling this x at $100 doesn't provide an invoice or the invoice is not official or the provider is outside europe and the invoice is on a different language. Will the tax office say: this invoice is not good so you have to pay tax for $120? will they "understand" if I show them that I made payments for $100? is there any way to make sure all will be ok if I find myself on that situation?

Anybody had any similar experience?

Thanks!

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You need an official invoice.
It being from outside Europe or in a different language shouldn't be a problem as long as the company you bought it from is officially registered somewhere and has the tax numbers/registration IDs to prove that.

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2 hours ago, Eric7 said:

You need an official invoice.
It being from outside Europe or in a different language shouldn't be a problem as long as the company you bought it from is officially registered somewhere and has the tax numbers/registration IDs to prove that.

Yes, that is my understanding/common sense...thou I don't know how "in real life" this works...the provider can refuse the invoice, the provider could give me an invoice that is not so "legal" , the tax office can refuse to take it because it's on a different language, etc.
Then I would end paying tax over an amount over a much bigger. I wanted to know if anybody had any practical case/experience on this.

 

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Can you not source your "articles" from within the EU?
Even if they cost a bit more it could be worth it to avoid the hassle.

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5 minutes ago, Eric7 said:

Can you not source your "articles" from within the EU?
Even if they cost a bit more it could be worth it to avoid the hassle.

Unfortunately I have no control over that. Some stuff is quite special and can't be produced here.

Anyways, if I could, the questions reminds, what if my German provider just refuses to provide an invoice? In the hypothetical case, what would happen?
Is there a way to justify this? for 100 euro is ok but when you run a business that has big cost and small margin the impact of that could be huge...so I was wondering what would happen in that case.

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Well that would be like trying to claim costs for someone working for you "black" - someone who works unofficially, without declaring their earnings and paying taxes themselves.
It certainly wouldn't be accepted by your Finanzamt.

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8 hours ago, Eric7 said:

Yeah, you're still paying for things which are tax deductible, albeit with a "discount" equivalent to the amount of tax you would have paid on income of the same amount.

 

Example (using a 30% tax rate):

Earn €1,000
Pay €300 tax (on €1,000)
Left with €700 net

 

compared with:
Earn €1,000
Pay for something deductible €400
Pay €180 tax (on €600)

Left with €420 net

 

You have "saved" €120 in tax so the tax deductible item cost you €280 (€400 - €120) in real terms

 

Hey, thanks for this. I am saving 40+ % of my invoices etc...

 

Can you recommend an accountant like my post originally asks?  :)

 

Thats all I'm looking for. 

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@PandaMunich on this very forum is a highly regarded tax accountant/ Steuerberaterin. I don't know if she is too busy for you but anyway. She is German with flawless English.

 

She's not in Berlin but does that matter these days? Corona stuff means most people don't open their offices to all and sundry anyway.

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17 minutes ago, George G said:

 

Hey, thanks for this. I am saving 40+ % of my invoices etc...

 

Can you recommend an accountant like my post originally asks?  :)

 

Thats all I'm looking for. 

 

Sorry, I'm in Bayern and to disagree with @john g. I think you're better off getting a local one. Sometimes it helps to be able to sit down with them and have something explained face to face.
If you are happy going the remote route, I'm sure @PandaMunich is absolutely awesome though as she's a veritable fountain of knowledge (on seemingly every single subject).

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Evening, Eric!👍

Oh, I dunno. I mean, I can't even easily visit my own tax accountant in Hamburg. Corona paranoia. His English is for holidays in Mallorca. Fortunately, my German is good.

 

Jokes aside- travelworker is looking for an English-speaking accountant. But REALLY English- speaking.. not the run of the mill " when do I become a sausage?"

 

Yes, I love face-to-face in my own business life but - thanks to technology - I no longer need to get soaked of an evening in Hamburg to visit a client ( who doesn't want me there anyway cos the kids are screaming!😂)..

 

 

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Evening John!
I'm still old school I guess... and the idea of posting all my Belege makes me a little queasy.
I like to actually see them in my Steuerberater's hand :lol:
Yes, I could scan them all but who's got time for that?

According to Panda's website she's not currently taking on any new clients anyway...

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Evening twice, Eric! Yeah, I am myself really old school. Funnily enough, I even googled my old school yesterday- Southend High School for Boys and there are girls in there!😂

 

I spent the past 8 years scanning a few million Belege to my Steuerberater every month because I was living in Greece.

 

Now I'm back in Hamburg and can just walk 10 minutes to his place and chuck the stuff at him!😂

 

But I'm glad I speak German cos his English hasn't moved the past 30 years or so!

Dunno if Panda isn't taking on new clients.

 

I am still taking on new clients in my business - but.. but.. but.. golden rule- only if the dog has had a decent Kakarunde first! Rules are rules.. noblesse oblige et al!👍❤️😂

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3 minutes ago, john g. said:

Evening twice, Eric! Yeah, I am myself really old school. Funnily enough, I even googled my old school yesterday- Southend High School for Boys and there are girls in there!😂

 

I spent the past 8 years scanning a few million Belege to my Steuerberater every month because I was living in Greece.

 

Now I'm back in Hamburg and can just walk 10 minutes to his place and chuck the stuff at him!😂

 

But I'm glad I speak German cos his English hasn't moved the past 30 years or so!

Dunno if Panda isn't taking on new clients.

 

I am still taking on new clients in my business - but.. but.. but.. golden rule- only if the dog has had a decent Kakarunde first! Rules are rules.. noblesse oblige et al!👍❤️😂


I've got too much to scan, it would take ages... Fat envelope, with everything stuffed in, job done.
Mine speaks almost no German as far as I can tell... I have no idea how I coped with him at the beginning (1993) 😂

 

Why are you back in Hamburg anyway? Doesn't sound like the most attractive move to make! 😂

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Sigh.. why back in Hamburg?😩

Some family reasons

Some health reasons

Abuse of dogs on Crete.. too much to deal with emotionally

And tax reasons! Couldn't tax deduct hardly anything from Greece- paid German tax 8 years whilst not here. I have overheads ohne Ende... useless from Greece. Someone has to feed the 5,000 in Harburg!!😂

Long story..😀

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11 minutes ago, john g. said:

Sigh.. why back in Hamburg?😩

Some family reasons

Some health reasons

Abuse of dogs on Crete.. too much to deal with emotionally

And tax reasons! Couldn't tax deduct hardly anything from Greece- paid German tax 8 years whilst not here. I have overheads ohne Ende... useless from Greece.

Long story..😀

 

Back for good then?
I'm planning to exit the rat race (and with it, this country) within the next couple of years... but was planning on keeping a property here for a while, staying registered and paying taxes etc.
Bad plan?

 

@George G - apologies for the high jack!

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Well, we have a house on Crete for sale. We will " pendeln " for a while. In fact, we will go there March or April for two to three months. 4 cats there to revisit! ( Help against the rat race, so to speak!😀)...

Your plans- bad!😂

Expensive if you pay into the pool and get offensive Finanzamt letters whilst not being here.

But maybe there's a cheap village in Cambodia waiting for you to offset the pain!!

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It's probably not a good time of year to find an accountant with time to spare. I have one who speaks very good English, but I've been waiting three weeks now for an answer to my e-mails. I couldn't in good conscience recommend him. The last time I got some work done, he fobbed me off on one of his partners, who doesn't speak a word of English. Not sure if I should be looking for someone else, or if it's like this with everyone right now.

 

I've never sent him receipts for income tax (I'm freelance), he says to add everything up myself and send him a spreadsheet. I used to pay him to do it because my German wasn't good enough to do it myself. Last time I managed the income tax through ELSTER, but couldn't quite figure out the VAT reporting. Probably I should study up on Panda's posts and give it a go. Are there any good German-language forums for financial questions? I've asked a couple here recently, and didn't get any response.

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A word of advice.

Make sure that your accountant/tax advisor gives you your tax forms BEFORE they submit them to Finanzamt.

Read them thoroughly and make sure that you understand them completely before you give them the ok to submit them.

 

I trusted my accountant that she had completed the forms with my financial interests being the main priority. She made a mistake and it cost me thousands and had to hire a lawyer to correct it.

 

Make sure you're happy with the figures entered on the tax forms!! So important!

 

(I know, why hire a tax advisor if you can't trust them?)

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Sounds like Berlin is the Wild West for accountants :lol:

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This particular accountant is not a Berliner. You can't get an accountant for love nor money in Berlin. Most don't even reply to emails or return phone calls,

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