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|Bundeszentralamt für Steuern (BZSt)|
|Formed||January 1, 2006|
|Jurisdiction||Government of Germany|
|Parent agency||Federal Ministry of Finance|
The Federal Central Tax Office (German: Bundeszentralamt für Steuern, abbreviated BZSt) is a German federal agency responsible for administering various sections of the country's tax code. It was created out of its current parent agency, the Federal Ministry of Finance, on 1 January 2006 and has approximately 2,200 employees.
Beginning in July 2007, the BZSt began issuing a unique National identification number to every resident, replacing the formerly decentralized system. The BZSt also operates informational databases relating to the local tax offices.
- Department "Q" ("Querschnittsaufgaben": Cross-sectional responsibilities)
- General counsel
- Human Resources, Organisation, Budgetary, Internal services, IT
- Tax Information Center, Reporting, Informationszentrum Steuern, Berichtswesen, Regulatory impact analysis, Risk Management
- Automation, Legal documentation department
- Tax Department "I" ("VAT")
- Administrative assistance for domestic and foreign government agencies
- Service and foreclosure of international tax assessments
- Refunding of value-added taxes (VAT)
- VAT Auditing
- Assessment of civil fines and criminal penalties
- Issuance and confirmation of VAT identification numbers for European Union value added tax
- EU VAT Tax Reporting
- Tax Department II ("National")
- Assessment of insurance and fire brigade taxes
- Supervisory control for child benefit payments
- Supervisory control for government-subsidized private pension payments ("Riester" plans)
- Refunds and exemption of capital gains taxes
- Bank account auditing
- Application processing and reporting for tax-exempted entities
- Application processing and reporting for pension payments
- Certification of private pension plans ("Riester" and "Rürup" plans), investment taxes, and returning of paid-in capital
- Tax Info Center, VAT Service Group
- Tax Department III ("Foreign withholding taxes")
- Mutual agreement procedures as per international tax treaties
- Administrative assistance for direct taxes
- Primary contact point for foreign investors
- Relief of German capital gains withholding taxes
- Tax exemption certifications for construction industry as per §48(b) of the Income Tax Law (EStG)
- Tax processing for foreign artists and athletes
- Information center for foreign tax relationships
- Federal Tax Auditing Department I (product branch)
- Federal Tax Auditing Department II (service branch)
- Federal Tax Auditing Department III (cross-sector task)
The Federal Tax Auditing Departments I, II and III employ approximately 500 auditors, who are responsible for reviewing the roughly 15,000 concerns incorporated in Germany.
To increase efficiency and effectiveness in the administration of taxes, the Regulatory Impact Assessment, Risk Management, and Reporting departments are being expanded.
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