Elster online. German income tax declaration Anlage N. Part 1

Last Updated on October 9, 2023

German income tax declaration Anlage N is for employees. In the first half we fill out datas from employer’s calculation list. In the second – our expenses, that we made for work.

How to calculate tax in Germany. What is written in Berechnung in Elster
Who should file a tax return in Germany
How you can fill Mantelbogen (Hauptvordruck)
Anlage N-Aus, Anlage Wa-Est, Homeoffice
Anlage Kind
Anlage Vorsorgeaufwand
Anlage Sonderausgaben
Anlage Haushaltnahe Diensleistungen 35a
Tax declaration Germany. Anlage EÜR

Let me remind you that I am not a professional tax consultant. Declarations are considered from the point of view of an ordinary user: a family with children and one working person of average income.

Before we get to Anlage N, let’s see how we can make our life easier.

Making life easier is called a pre-filled declaration. Using the code Abrufcode, which is sent in the letter along with the code for connecting to the program, you can request your annual calculation from the employer (Lohnsteuerbescheid) and electronic reports for other activities, if you have them.

How to pre-fill tax return

And now Anlage N.

Income tax declaration Anlage N

Overview of sections.

German income tax declaration Anlage N

eTin for those who have it.

German income tax declaration Anlage N

This is another inconvenience of the online version. The PC-version showed this page as an employer’s annual Lohnsteuerescheinigung, which was extremely bequem. The online version shows this page with line numbers that differ from Lohnsteuerbescheinigung.

It is still obvious at the beginning: tax class and first lines of calculation of church tax.

FAQ If the class changed during the year, the last one is entered.

Line 6 – brutto-wage – from line 3 of Lohnsteuerbescheinigung (futher – LB)

Line 7 – tax (from line 4 LB)

In line 8 – Soli. This is a tax for those who works in West Germany to help East Germany. From 2021 year there is Soli only for those 10% who earned very well. From Line 5 LB.

Line 9, 10 – tax for chirch. For partner only if he/she is in other confession (from lines 6, 7 LB)

German tax return Anlage N ausfüllen
German tax return Anlage N ausfüllen

The next paragraph is for late payments. I didn’t immediately understand where to look for line 11. Then I realized that this was from line 8 LB.

All other lines have numbers of the required lines in LB, which simplifies matters. This is about refunds and late payments.

German tax return Anlage N ausfüllen

I have nothing in these lines in LB, therefore I go further.

Types of income

  • taxable earnings not yet taxed – line 21
German tax return Anlage N ausfüllen

  • foreign income (completed by Anlage N-Aus) and income from work in the nearest foreign country. Lines 22-26.

Read about Anlage N-Aus

German tax return Anlage N ausfüllen
How to fill german declaration Anlage N

  • non-taxable income from Nebenberufliche Tätigkeit (small second job) – line 27.

About what a Nebenjob can be, read here: Part time work in Germany. What does freiberuflich, nebenberuflich, ehrenamtlich, gewerblich, Minijob mean

German tax return Anlage N
  • various additional incomes replacing the salary indicated in line 15 of LB – line 28. These are for example money in crisis situation (reduced work – Kurzarbeitgeld).
German tax return Anlage N

The lines about Elterngeld and Co, which were further in old form, disappeared from this Anlage. They remained only in the main part.

Main part (Hauptvordruck, Mantelbogen) – here.

Expenses of employees – Werbungskosten

The second page of the Anlage is Werbungskosten. This page lists the costs associated with professional activities.

You will find a list of possible working expenses and other deductible expenses in the topic “All I can return”. Part 1 A-D, Part 2 E-H, Part 3 I-N, Part 4 P-W

The beginning looks like this. Here are the amounts that the employer pays to compensated the travel expenses to work (for the specified lines in LB). If the required lines are empty, then we do not write anything.

German tax return Anlage N

You ask, where to enter the distance to work? To display the required lines, click on the blue button “Weitere Daten hinzufügen”. Then we are presented with standard lines for entering the way to work.

On line 31 we indicate the address of the main place of work. Other jobs are added by adding a job (“Weitere Daten hinzufügen”). If you have worked for a full year, then write 01.01-31.12. We also indicate the number of working days per week, the number of days spent on home office, vacation or sick leave.

German tax return Anlage N

Line 35 – the number of visiting days and the distance. The number of days of visit, if you do not know it exactly, is accepted without proof in the amount of up to 230 days (the standard number of working days per year minus the standard leave). If there are more than 230 days, this must be proven.

The number of kilometers to work is indicated only in one direction and along the shortest route. If you are using a different (not the shortest) route (which, for example, is obviously faster), then you can attach your route with an explanation of why you choose it. You also need to indicate how many of these kilometers you drive your car, and how many by public transport. For those traveling in a group, distance from the meeting point are indicated separately.

The tax deduction is calculated at the rate of 30 cents per kilometer, multiplied by the number of visiting days. From 2021 year if you drive more than 20 km, you receive 35 cents per km.

German tax return Anlage N
German tax return Anlage N

Questions – Answers

How much will be return from the cost of the travel card?

If you have a travel card and its annual cost exceeds
the number of km * 0.30 euros * number of attendance days,
then you can write off the cost of the travel card. But no more than 4500 euros.

If you drive 20 km
(20 km * 0.30 euro * (for examle) 200 days = 1200 euro),
and the travel card costs 1300 per year, then write off the cost of the pass. And if the pass costs less, then they will write off the sum cost based on the calculation with 30 cents.

I use my car half of the year and public transport the other half. How do I indicate this?

First, you write the number of days for the car and specify only the car. Then press “add”, fill in the same.But indicate the second half of the year, the corresponding number of days. And there you already write the cost of public transport.

How do I indicate the way if I have moved to another apartment during the year?

If we have moved, then we add “another” place of work, but we write the same address. Just in first part – the months when we traveled from the old place of residence. And in second part – from the new one. Accordingly, the kilometers will be different and the number of visiting days must be counted separately before and after the move.

I use combined transport all year round. I drive to the station, then take the train.

In this case we indicate the total number of kilometers and in a separate line – how many of them traveled by public transport. We indicate the money actually spent on public transport (for example, the cost of a travel card). The tax authority will decide what to take – a calculation with 30 cent or the cost of a travel card (in your favor).

Further – declaration Anlage N Part 2 – working expenses
Posts All I can return – part 1 A-D

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2 thoughts on “Elster online. German income tax declaration Anlage N. Part 1”

    • Hello Helene! Sorry, I wanted to publish posts for all applications (Anlagen) first, and then Everything I can return. But if there is a need, I will change the order.


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