Legal

ELSTER - The standard of tax administration

The fiscal code and the individual tax laws contain various regulations for the design of electronic data transmission. Based on § 87a to § 87d Fiscal Code and the Regulation on the automated retrieval of tax data (tax collection code) provide full scope for electronic communication between citizens, entrepreneurs and fiscal authorities.

Electronic communication with the fiscal authorities requires access via a secure procedure. It is provided through the ELSTER process offered by the fiscal authorities. This enables the fiscal authorities to take the appropriate organizational and state-of-the-art technical precautions to comply with legal requirements.

For the use of ELSTER, the fiscal authorities make My Elster and Elster Forms available. In addition, the implementation of the legal requirements for secure communication with the tax authorities is ensured with the use of the software library ERiC, which is integrated in many commercial and freely available control programs.

ELSTER is the standard of the tax administration.

After Section 87a (1) of the Fiscal Code the electronic communication to the tax authorities is only permitted if the tax authority has opened an access.

The electronic transmission of officially prescribed data sets (for example for tax declarations) is pursuant to Section 87a (6) of the Fiscal Code is to use a secure method that authenticates the data submitter and ensures the confidentiality and integrity of the data sets. This is ensured by the ELSTER procedure. Only in this way has the fiscal authorities opened up access to the transmission of officially prescribed data records pursuant to Section 87a (1) of the Fiscal Code. For this, the use of the software library ERiC of the fiscal authorities is absolutely necessary in order to ensure the implementation of the legal requirements for secure communication with the tax authorities.

Pursuant to § 87b of the Fax Code, in the case of the electronic transmission of officially prescribed data records, the data transmitter is to ensure the proper use of the interfaces officially designated for the respective taxation period or time. Otherwise, the electronic transfer (for example, tax returns) are deemed not to have occurred.

Manufacturers of non-official computer programs for the taxation procedure have to comply, pursuant to § 87c Fiscal Code, with various requirements and to ensure the correct and complete processing of the data within the scope of the program specified in the program description.

If a third party (contractor - for example a member of the tax consulting professions within the meaning of Sections 3 and 4 of the Tax Advisory Act) is commissioned with the electronic transmission according to the officially prescribed data set, the contractor is, pursuant to § 87d Fiscal Code obliged to obtain certainty about the person and the address of the client (identification) before transmitting the data and to record the relevant information in a suitable form. He also has to provide the client with the data in a readily verifiable form for approval, who then has to check it immediately for completeness and accuracy. According to § 72a of the fiscal code, the client is liable for tax damages caused by non-compliance with his obligations under § 87d of the fiscal code.

For the electronic retrieval of data by the taxpayer or a representative, pursuant to § 9 Tax Data Collection Ordinance the ELSTER procedure is to take the appropriate organizational and state-of-the-art technical precautions to safeguard data protection.

Data transmission with electronic authentication

The regulation in Section 87a (6) of the Fiscal Code allows the transmission of paperless tax returns. The certificate file required for electronic authentication is created free of charge during registration. Alternatively, security sticks can be used, or ELSTER-supported signature cards can be registered for the electronic authentication procedure.

The certificate used for electronic authentication ensures the unequivocal identification of the data transmitter to the fiscal authorities. In the case of transmission for a third party, the data must be made available to the "third party" (client) in an easily verifiable form.

Data transmission without electronic authentication

For the income tax return the data transmission can generally be done without electronic authentication. After the electronic transmission, the respective tax return must be printed out, signed by hand and submitted to the tax office.

The transfer of data with electronic authentication is required for corporate tax returns as well as for tax returns created in cooperation with a member of the tax consulting professions within the meaning of Sections 3 and 4 of the Tax Consultancy Act. The transmission of data without electronic authentication is limited in the officially prescribed data set to the income tax returns without the participation of a member of the tax consulting professions.

Chat

Loading data...

Page is loading... - rotating star graphic