Which income will be taxed in Germany?
- Lived in Germany for more than 6 consecutive months? You are considered " ordinarily resident " in Germany ( gewöhnlicher Aufenthalt ) and must pay tax on your worldwide income and property there.
- Lived in Germany for no more than 6 months? You are not considered tax resident, and pay tax only on income earned in Germany.
- You receive income from other EU countries? Check you never pay tax twice on the same income.
How much will you pay?
What's left of your gross income in Germany after deduction of taxes?
Income tax rates for assessment periods from 2010
For assessment years 2010, 2011and 2012, the tax free allowance for employees is €8 004. For 2013, the tax free allowance will be increased to €8 130, and to €8 3534 in 2014.
For income above this amount, tax rates start at 14%, with a maximum rate of 45% for high earners.
There is also a solidarity levy ( Solidaritätszuschlag ), equivalent to 5.5% of your income tax.
You must also pay church tax if you're affiliated to a religious community that charges it. Church tax is based on your income tax bill – 8% of your income tax in Bavaria and Baden-Württemberg, 9% in other parts of Germany.
are allowed that may reduce the amount of tax you pay on your salary.
When and how do you pay?
Your employer will deduct the amount of tax due from your salary.You can get an idea of how much tax you will have to pay on your wages from the German Finance Ministry's interactive wage and income tax calculator – interactive wage and income tax calculator
Your employer will also deduct your contributions to statutory social insurance schemes – pension, care, unemployment and healthcare insurance – direct from your wages.
Salary your only source of income? — You do not have to file an annual tax return.
Want to file a return to benefit from specific tax allowances? — Send the return to the relevant tax office before the end of May of the following year.
How to appeal / complain
Your tax office ( Finanzamt
) will provide information on your rights and obligations. Detailed advice can be obtained from tax consultants or solicitors, who can also represent you.
You may challenge any decision on taxation at the local tax office ( Finanzamt
), and subsequently, if need be, take your complaint to the tax tribunal. You have 1 month to challenge a decision.
German government — income tax info