When do French citizens get their salary?
If you live in Germany as a cross-border commuter and work in France, your income from salaried activity would be taxable in both countries due to national regulations. In order to avoid double taxation, a bilateral agreement has been concluded between France and Germany so that you are only taxable in one country.
Your salary from a job in France in a private company is taxable in Germany if you
- live in a 20 km wide zone (as the crow flies) along the German-French border in Germany,
- work in a 20 km wide zone (as the crow flies) along the Franco-German border in France,
- usually return to your place of residence in Germany every day and
- do not work more than 20% of your working hours outside this Franco-German border zone.
In order to be exempted from tax deduction at the place of work as a cross-border commuter, you must apply for an exemption certificate for your income from work using form S2-240 (completed by the employee, employer and the tax office of residence).
Note: A detailed list of the cities and municipalities that fall within the border zone of the Franco-German double taxation agreement can be obtained from the tax offices or from INFOBEST.
There are also exceptions to this rule:
- If you work for a French authority and are French citizens, you are liable for tax in France even though you are domiciled in Germany.
- In the case of cross-border temporary work, you are initially taxable in both countries. The French tax levied on your French agency workers' income will be offset against your German tax.
- State pensions are taxed where they are paid. This means that you have to file a tax return in both countries. In order to avoid double taxation, you should also state the pension taxed in France on your German tax return. The French pension is recorded as other income with the taxable portion.
Note: In 2005 the tax rate was 50 percent. It will be increased annually by two percent until 2020 and by one percent annually from 2021. From 2040 the taxable portion will be 100 percent.
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