Working without a fixed postal address, status and taxes in Germany
Thread poster: adanepst

adanepst  Identity Verified
Local time: 22:30
German to English
+ ...
Jan 26, 2015

Hello all!

I was registered as a freelance translator in the city where I was living in Germany and received my Umsatzsteuer-Identifikationsnummer (tax number) from this city. I am currently travelling for a time; before leaving, I did the "Abmeldung" (deregistration) formalities for both my status as a freelance translator in this city as well as my postal address. I still use this postal address on various documents since my former landlord at the address has agreed to let me continue using it. I have German citizenship.

Since I am now travelling, and planning to continue doing so for several months at least, I wish to know how to handle the official matters relating to invoicing/tax number, etc. Can I use my former postal address for this purpose, even though I am no longer officially registered at this address? Can I continue using the former tax number? Will I need to file my taxes in Germany even though I will have no official residence in Germany? Can anyone give me any other helpful information or advice regarding my situation?

With many thanks in advance, all best greetings!


writeaway  Identity Verified
French to English
+ ...
Why not consult Jan 27, 2015

a German lawyer or a German tax adviser? Or even the German authorities? Surely that's where you'll get the best advice and/or information on such intricate personal matters.


RobinB  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 15:30
German to English
German address needed Jan 27, 2015

I agree with writeaway that professional advice would make sense.

As a matter of general principle, however, I’m curious as to how you can think that you can continue to use a non-existent address in Germany as your VAT address, and at the same time question whether you need to file taxes in Germany. You have to be tax-resident in Germany to be able to use that VAT ID, so it would be logical to assume that you are therefore taxable in Germany. But you can only be taxable in Germany if you have a registered address there. And if you’re not tax-resident in Germany, where exactly are you tax-resident?

You need to speak to a German Steuerberater as a matter of urgency, I think (you should have done this before you left the country).


Niina Lahokoski  Identity Verified
Local time: 23:30
Member (2008)
English to Finnish
+ ...
Why deregister in the first place Jan 27, 2015

I agree with Robin and writeaway. Talk with an expert asap!
Also, as far as I know, in the EU, unless you live in another country for more than 6 months of a year regularly, you can be a tax resident in your original country, that is, Germany - even when traveling for a longer period of time. So perhaps there was no need to deregister at all!


adanepst  Identity Verified
Local time: 22:30
German to English
+ ...
Contacting expert Jan 28, 2015

'Thank you, everyone, for your answers. I will contact an expert on the subject.

Thanks again!


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Working without a fixed postal address, status and taxes in Germany

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