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Germany tax refund

18th Jan 2018

Income Tax Refund from Germany Taxation is progressive on the individual's income in Germany, in other words, the more you earn, the more you pay. German tax rates for individuals were between 14% and 45% in 2018.

Yearly income Tax
0 - 9.000 € 0 %
9.001 - 54.949 € 14 %
54.950 - 260.532 € 42 %
260.533 € and above 45 %

All employees and self-employed individuals have to pay income taxes. An individual who becomes "permanent resident" will have taxes calculated on his income from Germany and overseas. A foreign resident who is employed in Germany pays taxes only on income earned in Germany.

Employers are obligated to deduct the tax payable, income tax and social security on a monthly basis from income earned as part of a wage. You must also pay church tax (8-9%) if you are affiliated to a religious community that charges it. Tax returns are due by the end of July of the following year and the average refund amount is 2125 EUR!

You are most likely eligible for tax refunds in case:

  • You worked in Germany for less than one calendar year - for example you worked as seasonal worker or you had a break between two jobs
  • You worked for more than one employer during one year
  • You were working for two or more employers at the same time
  • You were commuting

Which taxes can be refunded?

We can help you to get your Income Taxes refunded, as well as child benefit support for your kids in case they are younger than 18 (or 25 in case they are university students). Find out more here!

Is it possible to refund Sozial- und Rentenversicherung tax (social and pension contributions)?

It is only possible if you are at least 65 years old EU ciziten or younger but non-EU citizen. Find out more here!

We also provide tax refund to those who work in Germany as self-employed (Selbstständige Arbeit)

An individual who is self employed is obligated to file a return by the end of May. If you regularly pay in advance on taxes or have annual income (not turnover) of more than € 17,500, we can help you with filling it. We will only need every invoice you issued or accepted.

What is Lohnsteuerbescheinigung?

Lohnsteuerbescheinigung (or LBS) is a summary of earnings and deducted taxes by an employer during a calendar year. All employers are legally obliged to issue the form by the end of February of the following year (for example by the end of February 2019 for fiscal year 2018).

What should I do if I don’t have Lohnsteuerbescheinigung?

  • Contact your employer who is legally obliged to issue you a replacement
  • Alternatively Neotax can also obtain the required document from your employer. Find out more about this service here.

How many years back can I claim tax refund?

You can claim your tax refund in Germany 4 years back from the moment of application.

How long does it take until I get my refund?

It may take up to 4-6 months until you get the income tax refund. The final decision is up to the German Tax Office.

How much is the service fee?

The price is 14% from the refunded amount. There is a minimum fee of 59 EUR. Price does not include VAT or bank charges!

Taxes in Germany

Tax return for expats, child benefits, pension refund, tax returns abroad.

Check it out!