How to fill out the Fragebogen zur steuerlichen Erfassung in English

How to fill out the Fragebogen zur steuerlichen Erfassung in English

Big fat disclaimer: this article is provided for translation purposes only and does NOT constitute official tax advice. This article is based on the most recent available form, version 2017FsEEU011NET found at Please note that the form is subject to change slightly over time.

The big change for 2020 is an update to the Kleinunternehmer-Reglung exempting small business owners from having to do VAT. From 2020 the small business owner threshhold is 22,000€ (up from 17,500€ in 2019) so anyone earning under than can request to be VAT exempt.

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To start invoicing and collecting money in Germany, you’ll need to get a freelance Steuernummer or tax number (not the same thing as the tax ID you received after registering your address) — and that means filling out the Fragebogen zur steuerlichen Erfassung. It looks pretty intimidating at first glance, but for most freelancers a lot of the lines can stay blank.

Here’s a line-by-line translation to help you along, assuming you have a straightforward freelance occupation such as artist.

(Note: some common jobs such as tour guide, cleaner, bicycle delivery person, etc. may not be classified as freelancing in Germany at all — but actually be a Gewerbe or trade, requiring you to get a Gewerbeschein or trade license.)

This article was originally published on an external blog. Please continue reading on Tia Hardy Robinson’s Medium blog.

You can also watch a step-by-step walk through of this form by Tia Robinson of Expath and Megan Thudium of Freelancing Womxn.

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