Pay business tax
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Wenn Sie ein gewerbliches Unternehmen in Deutschland betreiben, sind Sie gewerbesteuerpflichtig.
Do you run a company (commercial) in Germany and earn more than EUR 24,500 a year?
Then you are obliged to submit a trade tax return to your tax office. In it you explain how high your trade income was in the past calendar year (survey period). You submit a trade tax return for each reporting period in which you operated your trade (annually). You must submit the declaration electronically, for example via In doing so, you declare further additions or reductions based on your profit or loss (simplified: income less expenses).
You also state the municipality in which you operate your business. Hamburg is a state and a municipality at the same time.

After the declaration has been submitted, the tax office will send you a notification of the trade tax base amount by post.
The tax office determines the trade tax base amount by multiplying the trade income by the base tax rate of 3.5 percent. This measurement amount is the basis for the amount of trade tax.

In addition, the tax office in Hamburg will send you a decision on the trade tax you have to pay or refund.
The assessed trade tax results from the trade tax amount multiplied by the trade tax assessment rate of the respective municipality. In Hamburg the assessment rate is 470%.

At the same time, any advance payments will be determined for the future. If the underlying conditions change significantly, an application for adjustment of the advance payments must be submitted.

You pay the amounts specified in the notice of trade tax and/or advance payments for trade tax on the date specified there.
Electronically submitted trade tax return GewSt 1a.


You run a commercial company (not for freelancers and farmers and foresters) and are not exempt from trade tax.


The trade tax multiplier in Hamburg is 470%.
  • Trade Tax Act (GewStG)
  • Trade Tax Implementation Ordinance (GewStDV)
  • Trade tax return, obligation to submit electronically § 14a GewStG and § 25 GewStDV
  • Income from commercial operations or trade income § 7 GewStG
  • Additions § 8 GewStG
  • Reductions in Section 9 GewStG
  • Trade tax base amount § 11 GewStG
  • Trade tax, assessment rate § 16 GewStG

Related Links

  • ELSTER home page
  • Local business tax rates
If you run a commercial company and are subject to trade tax, the following must be done:
  • You submit your business tax return electronically.
  • You will receive a notification from your tax office about the determination of the trade tax base.
  • You will then receive a notification of the determination of the trade tax from the municipality; in Hamburg at the same time as the tax office determines the trade tax base.
  • Finally, you pay trade tax (if applicable) to the municipality.

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