Financial statements in Germany
Business enterprises operating under German law are required to prepare and publish annual financial statements in accordance with the German Commercial Code (Handelsgesetzbuch, HGB). To some extent, German annual financial statements are similar to their Danish/Scandinavian counterparts. However, in German financial statements, it is not permitted to revalue assets. The financial statements are based on the prudence principle in order to protect creditors.
A foreign company with a registered office in Germany is required to prepare German annual tax accounts.
Subject to certain adjustments, the annual financial statements form the basis for the calculation of the taxable income. Smaller businesses and asset management firms are allowed to submit so-called cash accounts. These only include income received and expenses paid in the year under review.
We can retrieve data from common Danish/other Scandinavian accounting software programs – and initiate automated payments which you then need to approve at your bank.
It is also usually not a problem for us to handle accounting or reporting according to a particular plan or specific chart of accounts. We can offer to use your company’s existing Danish/other Scandinavian chart of accounts.
We also take care of the electronic publication of your German company’s annual report in Germany. If the enterprise has only one permanent establishment, there are no requirements regarding publication.
Major differences between German and Danish accounting policies:
German accounting policies are based on the prudence principle. In Denmark, they are based on the principle of true and fair value. For this reason, fixed assets and inventories, in particular, are valued differently in Danish and German financial statements. The German commercial balance sheet differs from the tax accounts.
Tax depreciation charges are made over extended depreciation periods and based on fixed rates specified in an official table. A fiscal year cannot exceed 12 months. Only very few companies in Germany are required to have their accounts audited by auditors.