Receive relief from German tax deduction pursuant to § 50c EStG Unfortunately this specification of service has not yet been completely translated.

If you wish to obtain relief from German withholding tax, you may apply under certain conditions.

For remuneration received prior to January 1, 2014, the tax office responsible for the debtor of the remuneration is responsible; for remuneration received as of January 1, 2014, the Federal Central Tax Office (Bundeszentralamt für Steuern, BZSt) is responsible for checking the obligation to withhold tax. Applications for relief from withholding tax are processed by the Federal Central Tax Office (BZSt) for all periods.

Domestic income of foreign artists, athletes, licensors and supervisory board members is subject to limited tax liability. The BZSt taxes this income in a tax deduction procedure.

You can apply to the BZSt for relief from German withholding tax. Foreign taxpayers are relieved of the German withholding tax in that

  • taxes already paid are refunded or
  • with an exemption certificate, the tax deduction will no longer apply in whole or in part in the future.

Persons with limited tax liability in Germany are:

  • Natural persons if they have neither a domicile nor their habitual residence in Germany and they earn German income.
  • Corporations, associations of persons and estates if they have neither their management nor their registered office in Germany and they generate German income.

If there is no double taxation agreement (DTA) between Germany and the country of residence of the remuneration creditor, relief from German tax deduction cannot be granted.

In this case, you can at best avoid any double taxation by means of corresponding national regulations in the country of residence.

Applications for relief from withholding tax are processed by the Federal Central Tax Office (BZSt).



When submitting your application, you must submit:

  • If authorized by power of attorney: Power of attorney
  • Certificate of residence on the application form
  • copy of the contract
  • in cases of reimbursement, the original tax certificate issued by the person liable for the reimbursement
  • in refund cases where payment to a party other than the refund creditor or applicant is desired, an original power of attorney for collection issued by the refund creditor.

If you are a shareholder, you must also attach the following documents:

  • Extract from the Commercial Register,
  • Organizational chart (with details of the percentage shareholdings)

The BZSt will request further documents required for verification if necessary.



  • Forms: yes
  • Online procedure possible: no
  • Written form required: yes
  • Personal appearance required: no



Related Links

  • Entsprechende Anträge auf Abzugsteuerentlastung auf der Internetseite des Bundeszentralsamtes für Steuern unter Formulare

Preconditions

Applications can be submitted by:

  • foreign artists
  • foreign sportsmen
  • foreign licensors
  • foreign supervisory boards

Further requirements:

  • in the case of reimbursement: payment of withholding tax
  • A double taxation treaty must exist between Germany and the country of residence



§ Section 50c (2) and (3) EStG

Related Links

  • Weiterführende Informationen zur Abzugsteuerentlastung auf der Internetseite des Bundeszentralamts für Steuern
  • Merkblatt zur steuerlichen Behandlung ausländischer Kulturvereinigungen auf der Internetseite des Bundeszentralamts für Steuern
  • Übersicht über das deutsche Besteuerungsrecht an Lizenzgebühren nach Doppelbesteuerungsabkommen (DBA) auf der Internetseite des Bundeszentralamts für Steuern
  • Merkblatt zu Lizenzgebühren und ähnlichen Vergütungen auf der Internetseite des Bundeszentralamts für Steuern

You must submit the application for withholding tax relief in writing on the official form to the Federal Central Tax Office (BZSt), Division St II 9.

  • Download the application from the BZSt website. Fill out the application electronically. Print it out and sign it.
  • Send the application and all documents to the BZSt.
  • Your application will be processed and checked by the BZSt.
  • You will receive a certificate of exemption or a notice of exemption (refund) or a notice of rejection of your application.
  • If an exemption certificate is issued, the person liable for payment will receive a corresponding notification in the form of a copy of the exemption certificate for his files.
  • In the case of refund applications, payment of the refund amount will be made approximately four weeks after receipt of the exemption certificate.



Responsible for the content
Federal Ministry of Finance (BMF)

Last update or date of publication
01.04.2021