CONTINUEThis site uses cookies. By continuing to browse this site you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Find out more.
  1. Front Page
  2. News By Topic
  3. Germany To Extend Tax Concession To Gay Couples

Germany To Extend Tax Concession To Gay Couples

by Ulrika Lomas,, Brussels

15 August 2012

Following a strong lobbying campaign and pressure from the constitutional tribunal, Germany is to apply an existing tax concession which is currently only available to married couples to same-sex couples.

As the political debate concerning income tax concessions for gay and lesbian couples heats up, the German constitutional tribunal ruled that the land transfer tax exemption must apply in the same way for both married couples and “registered partnerships”. In addition, registered partnerships must be granted the same family allowances as married civil servants, judges, and soldiers.

Marriage is not available for same-sex couples in Germany, but registered partnerships have been in place since 2001, and they normally grant the same rights as regular marriages, except for tax and adoption purposes.

If the German constitutional court ruling concerns only land transfer tax and public sector compensation, the issue of equal rights for income tax purposes remains. Married couples may especially file their income tax return jointly, therefore benefitting from higher income tax thresholds, whereas this concession is not available for registered civil partnerships.

While the left-wing and the liberal party (FDP) are usually proponents of equality of rights between heterosexuals and homosexuals, the German Conservatives (CDU-CSU) are traditionally against further concessions for same-sex couples. However, 13 Conservative MPs have recently argued in favour of granting gay and lesbian couples the ability to file their tax returns jointly.

Nevertheless, Finance Minister Wolfgang Schäuble has said that it is preferable to wait for the German constitutional tribunal to rule against the existing regime before proceeding to any reform.

TAGS: court | Finance | tax | property tax | law | Germany

To see today's news, click here.


Tax-News Reviews

Cyprus Review

A review and forecast of Cyprus's international business, legal and investment climate.

Visit Cyprus Review »

Malta Review

A review and forecast of Malta's international business, legal and investment climate.

Visit Malta Review »

Jersey Review

A review and forecast of Jersey's international business, legal and investment climate.

Visit Jersey Review »

Budget Review

A review of the latest budget news and government financial statements from around the world.

Visit Budget Review »

Stay Updated

Please enter your email address to join the mailing list. View previous newsletters.

By subscribing to our newsletter service, you agree to our Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy.

To manage your mailing list preferences, please click here »