If you are an expat living in Germany and you are worried about filing your taxes or you are in the need of any advice on your specific financial circumstances, it can be beneficial to consult a tax advisor. Having a good, trustworthy tax advisor can especially be beneficial if your financial situation is complicated, for example, in the case of working as a freelancer or self-employed, or when having multiple sources of income.
Every business in Germany (with some exceptions) are liable to pay trade tax (Gewerbesteuer). There are various types of taxes that are applied depending on the business type and how it is registered. The trade tax in Germany is determined and collected by each municipality, therefor the location of your business will greatly determine your tax burden when it comes to trade tax.
By the introduction of the tax identification number (IdNo, or TIN) in 2008, Germany wants to modernise its tax system by making it less bureaucratic. It aims to simplify the taxation procedure by making electronically provided and pre-filled tax return forms possible, among others.
The VAT number in Germany is used to identify you when making payments to the VAT department in Germany (Finanzamt). The VAT number is referred to with different names, but they all mean the same: Umsatzsteuernummer, Umsatzsteuer-Identifikationsnummer or USt-IdNr.
Anyone moving to Germany is subject to paying tax on any earned income. But the good news is that if you're self-employed (Selbstständige) you can enjoy a variety of reductions (Steuerminderungen) if you properly fill-in your tax declaration (Steuererklärung).In case you're self-employed and living in Germany, it's your responsibility to submit your income declaration at the end of the tax year. But to benefit from maximum reductions you should understand what expenses are tax-deductible for the self-employed.