What is the church tax (Kirchensteuer)?

Members of certain churches must pay the church tax (Kirchensteuer). It’s 9% of your income tax, or 8% in Bavaria and Baden-Württemberg.2

If you earn 50,000€ per year, the church tax is around 800€ per year.

Calculate your church tax ➞

These religious communities collect a church tax:3

  • Evangelical Church (Evangelische Kirche)
  • Roman Catholic Church (Römisch-katholische Kirche)
  • Jewish Community (Jüdische Gemeinde)
  • Old Catholic Church (Altkatholische Kirche)
  • Some Free Religious communities (Freireligiöse Gemeinden)

If you are not part of those churches, you do not pay church tax.1

You declare your religion when you register your address. The church can also tax you if you were a member in another country.4 To stop paying the church tax, you must leave the church.

Sources and footnotes
  1. Wikipedia 

  2. Wikipedia, german-tax-consultants.com 

  3. recht-finanzen.de, Wikipedia 

  4. handelsblatt.com