How do I register my freelancing activity

As a freelancer starting out in business, you are required to contact the Tax Office [Finanzamt] yourself.

Register a freelancing activity with the Tax Office [Finanzamt]

Regardless of the legal form of your newly commenced entrepreneurial activity, you are obliged to inform the tax office responsible for you within one month of opening the business or commencing the activity. In general, the tax office responsible for you is determined by where the activity is expected to be carried out predominantly. In Munich turn to the Munich Tax Office [ Finanzamt München]. They require all information on the legal and factual circumstances relevant for taxation. Depending on the legal form of your business, this information is to be provided on the relevant “tax registration questionnaire” [Fragebogen für die steuerliche Erfassung]. The questionnaire is available in German language only via “Mein ELSTER”,  the financial administration portal. A one-time registration for “Mein ELSTER” is required before you can access the questionnaire. Please be careful when completing this form,  mistakes may have important consequences. If you have questions, consult your tax advisor. Please understand that for legal reasons we are not allowed to provide individual tax advice. Once you have submitted the questionnaire to the tax office you will be assigned a tax number which you will need in order to write invoices.

Munich Tax Office: information on tax registration in English language (PDF, 153 KB)

ELSTER Portal: information in easy German language

Munich Tax Office: tax registration questionnaires (German language)

Munich Tax Office: contact persons for new businesses (German language)

Munich Tax Office: information on taxes for new businesses (German language)

ELSTER Portal: guidance for the tax registration questionnaire (German language)


Types of new businesses: Self-employed people are either business people [Gewerbetreibende] or members of the liberal professions [Freie Berufe]. Different rules apply to these two categories. Are you not certain whether the tax office will classify your activity as one of the liberal professions [Freie Berufe]? Read on here

Further steps

Please check if you are required to inform other authorities such as the social insurance system, if you need any permits and which laws and regulations apply to your future business.