Tax & Legal

Tax & Legal

Statutory interest rate unconstitutional: Ministerial circular with guidelines for transitional period

The Federal Finance Ministry has issued a circular on the implementation of the decision of the Federal Constitutional Court of July 8, 2021 regarding the inappropriate statutory interest rate on late payment and refund taxes. The ministerial notice will have to be applied for the transitional period until retroactive new provisions on the interest rate pursuant to sections 233a, 238 (1) sentence 1 of the German Fiscal Code (AO) for interest periods starting on or after January 1, 2019 are in place. Continue reading

VAT treatment of services provided by stock exchanges and other trading platforms

In a current circular, the tax authorities generally comment on the VAT treatment of services provided by exchanges and other trading platforms for financial products and, in this respect, partially amends an earlier decree issued in 2018 with regard to trading platforms for the acquisition or trading of Bitcoin and other so-called crypto currencies. Continue reading

Bundesrat approves the Act to Modernise Corporate Income Tax


In its session on 25 June 2021, the Bundesrat gave its approval to the Act to Modernise Corporate Income Tax Law. The Bundesrat thus followed the recommendation of the Finance Committee. The law is should enter into force on 1 January 2022.

See below for more details.

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New decree by Federal Ministry of Finance extends motive test for escape from CFC taxation to third country situations

On 17 March 2021, the German Federal Ministry of Finance (BMF) published a decree on the application of Section 8 (2) of the Foreign Tax Act (AStG) which stipulates the “motive test” taxpayers have to meet to escape controlled foreign company (CFC) taxation. Continue reading