The consultation agreement on the DTT AT-GER in connection with the COVID-19 pandemic expires on 30 June 2022. The simplifications contained therein for stays solely caused by the pandemic and the resulting tax consequences are no longer applicable from this point in time.
To keep the extent of the personal burdens that the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic brought as low as possible for employees who work across borders, a consultation agreement on the DTT AT-GER was concluded. The agreement states that working days spent in the home office only due to the pandemic do not trigger any change in the distribution of the taxation rights. In addition, it was clarified that work performed in the home office due to the pandemic does not lead a permanent establishment for the employer. The continuation of the cross-border commuter regulation in case of home office due to the pandemic and questions regarding the taxation of short-time work benefits (“Kurzarbeitergeld” in Germany) and short-time work support (“Kurzarbeitsunterstützung” in Austria) are also part of the consultation agreement.
Given the fact that the containment measures regarding the pandemic are now largely expiring, the consultation agreement on the DTTAT-DE should only be valid until 30 June 2022. The agreement therefore applies to working days in the period from 11 March 2020 to 30 June 2022. From 1 July, 2022, all working days spent in the home office are therefore to be attributed to the country in which they are actually spent. If cross-border commuters spend working days in the home office from 1 July 2022 due to the pandemic, these are now considered as non-return days. The decree also notes that the statements on German short-time work benefits and Austrian short-time work support are also to be applied after the validity of the agreement, as they are to be qualified as payments from the statutory social security system of the respective state. According to the DTT AT-GER such payments may as before only be taxed in the state which pays out the benefits.
With the expiry of the consultation agreement on the DTT AT-GER, the special regulations and simplifications for the assessment of COVID-19-related home office activities will expire. In order to avoid unwanted tax consequences, particular attention must be paid to cases involving cross-border activities between Austria and Germany.
Birgit Zeisel ist Steuerberaterin bei Deloitte Wien. Sie ist im Bereich Global Employer Services tätig. Sie betreut nationale und internationale Klienten und hat langjährige Erfahrung in der steuerlichen Beratung bei internationalen Mitarbeitereinsätzen. Weiters umfasst ihre Tätigkeit die Behandlung sozialversicherungsrechtlicher Fragestellungen sowie Expat-Payroll Themen.
Arnold Binder ist Partner in der Steuerberatung und Experte für Auslandsentsendungen sowie Arbeitgeber-Arbeitnehmer-Compliance. Er ist mit zunehmender Spezialisierung im Bereich Global Employer Services tätig, wo er sich verstärkt den digitalen Potenzialen annimmt.