Operating expenses of a GmbH
In a GmbH , you have to pay additional expenses, especially in the area of taxes. And due to the necessary determination of profits and distribution to the shareholders, you have to be particularly careful when calculating the taxable amounts. The operating expenses cannot be named flat-rate and finally, because of course you also have to include costs for office, staff, vehicles, tax consultants or buildings.
When it comes to taxes, look out for the following items that may be relevant to you:
- Corporation tax
- income tax
- Capital gains tax
- Business tax
- value added tax
- Property tax
- Real estate transfer tax
- Solidarity surcharge
What business expenses are deductible for small business owners?
As a small business owner, you list your expenses in the income-surplus-calculation ( EÜR ). You can simply use our free EÜR templateto use. Basically, the same costs for office, material and personnel are possible that we have already mentioned in the previous paragraphs. What you always have to pay attention to is that there are business expenses that you can deduct immediately and in full (for example, when you buy material). Then there are expenses that you split up through the depreciation. Finally, there are expenses that you can only partially deduct, such as entertainment costs, since you not only have to feed yourself in your capacity as a company owner, but also as a person and private citizen. And then there are the flat rates for you, which, however, apart from the specific flat rates for certain company groups, mainly focus on travel expensesrestrict. Here you can set a flat rate of 30 cents per kilometer.
When can I deduct business expenses and include them in my tax return?
You can always deduct business expenses that are actually, factually or economically related to your business. Just no transitory items!
Development of business expenses
The necessary business expenses ensure that your profit is reduced . This includes, for example, the costs of acquisitions or manufacturing costs, including material expenses, if you exchange a truck or car for a forklift, for example. In addition, you incur expenses if something is stolen from you (goods that disappear in transit) or your bad debts if customers do not pay and you cannot collect the money.
These expenses can arise in advance (when setting up) if you have to attend appointments and consultations with your lawyer, a notary or the bank. Examples of this are travel costs and consultant fees, but also costs for your financing, which you also have to clarify in advance. You can then set such expenses as anticipated operating expenses before the start or even when the company is closed. There are also post-business expenses, such as debt interest or surety expenses.
Different types of business expenses
When it comes to business expenses, you have to check whether it is really business expenses or even your living expenses or income- related expenses . Only if the costs are operationally induced do they count as operating expenses according to Section 4 (4) EStG. Then it still has to be checked whether these are exclusively business-related expenses that have a profit-reducing effect or whether they are mixed expenses that are both business-related and private. This is always a bit tricky and happens, for example, if you also use the company’s PC privately. Then it is a question of mixed costs.
You then have to check whether the costs are almost exclusively attributable to the company or whether private shared use is hardly significant. Then you can set the costs completely as business expenses. In the opposite case, you cannot count living costs, which are to a small extent also operationally significant, as business expenses. More on this in the section on cost separation below.
Immediately deductible business expenses
Now you have to further subdivide the business expenses into those that you can deduct immediately and those that you cannot or cannot fully deduct. You can fully deduct all expenses for rent, wages and interest, insurance and taxes or your sales tax prepayments. The so-called outflow principle according to Section 11 (2) sentence 1 of the Income Tax Act applies to the payment . This means that the expenses are to be set in the calendar year in which you made them – regardless of the due date.
Non-deductible or not fully (limited) deductible business expenses
This includes operating expenses that are not treated according to the discharge principle . For example, all expenses for the purchase of depreciable and non-depreciable fixed assets . Because for this you have to apply annual depreciation later (i.e. expenses that are not recognized in the calendar year in which they arise). In addition, this category also includes losses and deposits. You must also note that the addition of a purchased asset is removed from the current assetsan offsetting entry with an equally high operating expense is always required so that the transaction is balanced (“not affecting earnings”). These limited deductible business expenses also include entertainment costs or gifts for business partners (e.g. at Christmas).