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Nexia Ebner Stolz

First tax law following Bundestag elections passed

Even though the Grand Coa­li­tion at the federal level did not offi­cially come into being until mem­bers of the SPD deci­ded in favor of it on Decem­ber 16, 2013, the Ger­man par­lia­ment already had pas­sed the cur­rent legis­la­tive period’s first tax law with a vote by the Bun­des­tag on Novem­ber 28, 2013 and by the Bun­des­rat on Novem­ber 29, 2013.

The law we are refer­ring to is the AIFM Tax Adjust­ment Act. Yes, this law had been intro­du­ced into the legis­la­tive pro­cess in the pre­vious period. Howe­ver, because the Bun­des­tag and the Bun­des­rat could not come to an agree­ment in the sum­mer, it ulti­ma­tely fai­led pur­su­ant to the dis­con­ti­nuity prin­ciple. The dis­con­ti­nuity prin­ciple requi­res that any legis­la­tion still pen­ding at the end of a par­lia­men­tary term be drop­ped.

Under the lea­dership of North Rhine-West­pha­lia, a group of sta­tes pro­po­sed legis­la­tion having sub­stan­tially simi­lar con­tent on October 24, 2013.

Like the ori­gi­nal bill, the recently pas­sed law con­ta­ins a pro­vi­sion pro­hi­bi­ting the recogni­tion of hid­den lia­bi­li­ties when pro­vi­si­ons are sold or trans­fer­red wit­hin a cor­po­rate group. Only 1/15 of the busi­ness expen­ses resul­ting from the sale or trans­fer can be char­ged to expense imme­dia­tely, with the rema­in­der deduc­ti­ble in sub­se­qu­ent years in annual inc­re­ments of 1/14 (Sec. 4f EStG [Income Tax Act]). In the first set of tax acco­unts pre­pa­red fol­lo­wing the acqui­si­tion, the entity acqui­ring the pro­vi­si­ons must recog­nize them as lia­bi­li­ties in the amo­unts that were tax-rele­vant for the pre­vious deb­tor. This results in a gain on acqui­si­tion, 14/15 of which can be placed in a tax-exempt reserve. This reserve, in turn, gene­rally must be rever­sed into income in the amo­unt of 1/14 per year (Sec. 5 (7) EStG).


The pro­vi­sion per­ta­ins not only to intra­group trans­fers, but also to trans­fers to third par­ties, espe­cially of part­nership inte­rests. In prin­ciple, the new rules first take effect for fis­cal years ending after Novem­ber 28, 2013. If an entity’s fis­cal year is the same as the calen­dar year, they are thus already man­datory for 2013 and apply to any trans­fers made since January 1, 2013.

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