Commencement of freelance work, registration with the tax office

Notification of employment according to § 138 Abgabenordnung (AO)

If you take up freelance work, you must inform the tax office within one month. An informal letter is sufficient for this. Regardless of where you start your freelance work, you must submit this notification to the tax office responsible for your place of residence.

Note: As a freelancer, you are not subject to the obligation to register with the trade office of the responsible municipality.

In addition to the obligation to report the commencement of your freelance work, you are also obliged to submit a completed questionnaire to the tax office for tax registration purposes. The obligation to notify the tax office of the commencement of freelance work can also be fulfilled by submitting this questionnaire.

Single Point of Contact

For this procedure, you can use the service of the Single Point of Contact (Einheitlicher Ansprechpartner). They will guide you through the administrative procedure, take care of correspondence with all the offices responsible for your request and will be available to you as a competent advisor.

Onlineantrag und Formulare

Hinweis: Sobald Sie eine Postleitzahl oder einen Ort angegeben haben, können wir Ihnen an dieser Stelle den Onlineantrag und die Formulare der zuständigen Stelle anzeigen. Ort angeben

Zuständige Stelle

Tax office

Hinweis: Sobald Sie eine Postleitzahl oder einen Ort angegeben haben, können wir Ihnen an dieser Stelle weitere Informationen zu der für Sie zuständigen Stelle anzeigen. Ort angeben
Warum soll ich einen Ort angeben?
Mit Hilfe der Ortsangabe können wir die für Sie passenden Informationen, Formulare, Dienste und Ihre zuständige Stelle anzeigen.
Welchen Ort soll ich angeben?
Zum Beispiel Ihren Wohnort, wenn Sie einen Reisepass beantragen wollen oder den Unternehmensstandort, wenn Sie ein Gewerbe anmelden möchten.

Service details

Detailed information

Prerequisite

According to § 18 of the German Income Tax Act (Einkommensteuergesetz; EStG), certain independent professions (so called Katalogberufe or “catalogue professions”) are considered to be freelance work. These include:

  • doctors,
  • lawyers,
  • non-medical practitioners,
  • physiotherapists,
  • engineers,
  • journalists.

and self-employed activities, for example the

  • scientific,
  • artistic,
  • writing,
  • teaching or educational activities.

In order to be considered freelance work, the activity must be explicitly listed in the legal provision of § 18 of the Income Tax Act (EStG) or at least be similar to the catalogue professions mentioned therein. Professions are considered similar if the occupational profiles are identical in essential points - i.e. the training and the professional activity must be comparable. In addition, you must have specialist knowledge that enables you to independently manage a company.

Procedure

Send the completed questionnaire to the tax office for tax registration purposes. If you want to inform the tax office separately about commencement of your freelance work, an informal letter is sufficient.

Required documents

Upon request:

  • Proof of professional activity and professional qualification
  • Proof of establishment (contracts)

If further proof and documents are required, your tax office will inform you.

Deadlines

Notification deadline: one month after starting a freelance activity

Legal basis

Release note

Saxon State Ministry of Finance. 20.01.2020