Additional burden from property tax: tax offices are "close to collapse"

Millions of property owners will have to submit a tax return as part of the recalculation that has been decided.

Additional burden from property tax: tax offices are "close to collapse"

Millions of property owners will have to submit a tax return as part of the recalculation that has been decided. This causes considerable additional work for the tax offices, says tax union boss Köbler. He also expects a processing backlog in other areas.

A good three weeks before the deadline for submitting the tax return for the new property tax, the tax offices can hardly keep up with their work because of the additional work involved. "The financial administration is on the verge of collapse. There are many reasons. But the main reason is the explanation," said the chairman of the German tax union, Florian Koebler, to the newspapers of the Funke media group.

Almost half of the property owners have still not submitted a property tax return. Because the municipalities need the data from the tax authorities to determine the new property tax by mid-2024, a large number of employees have already been assigned to process the declarations. In addition, Köbler complained that the policy of the tax authorities in connection with the most recent relief packages had saddled them with numerous additional tasks.

Due to the real estate tax reform passed in 2019, new methods for calculating the tax will take effect from 2025. Due to the sluggish submission, the Federal Ministry of Finance had already extended the submission deadline by three months from the end of October to the end of January.

According to union boss Köbler, the circumstances are also delaying the processing of current income tax returns for employees and the self-employed. "I assume that nationwide there are 50 percent more unprocessed income tax returns than in the previous year," said Köbler. "The citizen has to wait longer for the tax assessments and thus for possible refunds." The average processing time is likely to increase from a month and a half to "more like three months".

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