Registration of
offshore companies
Company in Germany in 2023

Opening a company in Germany in 2023

24. 03. 2023

Opening a company in Germany in 2023 is an opportunity to do business in a country that boasts one of the most developed economies in the world. Among the pluses are political and social stability and low corruption. The country offers preferential programs for small and medium-sized businesses, and banks - long-term loans at low interest rates.

Is it difficult for foreigners to register a business in Germany

Citizens of the EU, Switzerland or Norway, can easily open a company in Germany, once they are registered as a resident. If a foreigner is not an EU citizen, before opening a company, he must obtain a visa and a residence permit, which allow you to work not for hire in Germany.

Basic forms of legal entity in Germany

Before opening a company in Germany, it is necessary to decide on the form of a legal entity. There are 3 main forms:

  • Individual company - an option for people who are just starting their business. Its essence is that the founder is fully responsible for all the mistakes and debts of the organization. If the company earns less than €22,000 in the first year and not more than €50,000, can be classified as a small business (Kleingewerbe). This reduces the amount of bureaucratic procedures.
  • Business partnership - here at least 2 people are involved. There are several different forms (GbR, OHG), but all of them, except the commercial partnership (KG), are fully responsible for the debts associated with the business.
  • Corporation (Kapitalgesellschaft) - despite the name, this is the favorite form of business for startups and companies. The most common form is
  • GmbH (Limited Liability Company), which requires a share capital of €25,000. If such money is not available, it is possible to open a UG (Unternehmergesellschaft), where €1 is enough to start.

How to open a company in Germany

The first thing a foreigner has to do when arriving in Germany is to register at the local citizen's office (Bürgeramt). It should be done within 2 weeks if you plan to stay in the country for more than 3 months. Afterwards, this registration (Anmeldung) will enable you to get a tax number, a residence permit, a bank account, sign a cell phone contract, etc.

Once you are registered, you have to get a residence permit, which allows you to do business. You also have to:

  • Develop a Articles of Incorporation and other corporate documents;
  • Choose of a unique name;
  • Rent an office, which will be the legal address of the company.

The next step is to register the company with the Gewerbeamt, after which you get a trade license, which allows you to do business. In some areas, such as insurance brokers, an additional license may be required.

Once you have received a trade license, you have to register your business with the tax office (Finanzamt). This is a long and tedious procedure, which requires filling out a lot of paperwork. When it is completed, the business owner will receive a tax number and a VAT number, if it has been applied for.

Then it is necessary to open a commercial account at a local bank. You will need it not only for business operations, but also for proper bookkeeping, which will be carefully checked.

Once these steps have been completed, you can get to work.

How to start a company in Germany quickly

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