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A VAT Refund Guide to

Germany

How to get VAT Refunds from Germany for your business

Businesses registered in countries outside of Germany can claim VAT refunds on any costs incurred in Germany.
The below information details the requirements needed to be eligible for a VAT refund. This includes claimable expense types, Germany VAT rates, deadlines and claiming periods.

Where is your company based?

EU

based businesses

VAT-registered businesses in an EU member state are eligible to recover VAT on business costs from Germany under the EU VAT Refund Directive.

NON-EU

based businesses

VAT-registered businesses outside of the European Union are eligible to recover VAT on business costs from Germany under the 13th Directive.

Which countries have reciprocity with Germany?

All EU countries, Andorra, Antigua and Barbuda, Australia, Bahamas, Bahrain, Bermudas, British Virgin Islands, Brunei Darussalam, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Canada, Cayman Islands, China (Taiwan), Gibraltar, Greenland, Grenada, Guernsey, Hong Kong, Iceland, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Jamaica, Japan, Jersey, Korea (People‘s Rep.), Korea (R.O.K.), Kuwait, Lebanon, Liberia, Libya, Liechtenstein, Macao, Maldives, Marshal Islands, Macedonia, Norway, New Zealand (from 1 April 2014), Oman, Qatar, Pakistan, St. Vincent, San Marino, Saudi Arabia, Serbia, Solomon Islands, Swaziland, Switzerland, United Arab Emirates, U.S.A and Vatican City

For a more detailed explanation on what reciprocity means within the scope of VAT, click here:

What expenses are claimable in Germany?

ENTERTAINMENT & HOSPITALITY

Entertainment

7% & 19%
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Hotels & Accommodation

7%
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Restaurants

19%

EVENTS

Conferences, Trade Shows & Exhibitions

19%

Training Courses & Seminars

19%

GENERAL EXPENSES

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Goods

19%

Inter-company charges

19%

Office Expenses

19%
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Marketing Costs

19%

Professional Fees & AP invoices

19%

TRAVEL RELATED

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Car Rental

19%
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Fuel

0%
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Public Transport

7% & 19%
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Taxis

7% & 19%

Additional Information

How far back can your business claim VAT from Germany?
January to December of the previous year
What’s the foreign VAT deadline in Germany?
30 June of each year (Within 6 months of the end of the calendar year in which the tax was incurred)
How long does it take to receive a VAT refund from Germany?
Depending on the complexity of your application and the capacity at the VAT authority, it can take up to 6 months for an EU company and up to 10 months for non-EU companies to receive a VAT refund from Germany

Need help with your VAT refund from Germany?

You don’t have to do this alone. We’ve been helping companies reclaim foreign VAT refunds for over 20 years. We have the knowledge and technology to process your refunds quicker as well as attend to any unforeseen VAT authority queries that may arise.

Download a full international VAT guide and never miss a deadline

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