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New trouble with the flat tax

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Viele Anleger warten noch immer auf ihre Jahressteuerbescheinigung von der Bank. Foto:  dpa

Many investors are still waiting on their annual tax certificate from the bank. Photo: dpa

DÜSSELDORF. The return is almost ready. Income tax certificate, the premiums for insurance and donation receipts are difficult in the input screens of the computer database. Only one document is missing: the annual tax certificate from the bank. The reason is easily found: the flat tax’s fault. It should just simplifying the tax return. 25 percent flat rate on capital income is now a flat rate payable are added solidarity and possibly church tax.

Sounds simple, but prepared the banks problems. You have to change their billing problems. And that has led to months of delays. For affected customers, this means that they can initially make any tax refund claim, which relates to withholding tax paid too much. For example, affects customers of German bank Comdirect and Targobank. Insider assume, however, that the problem all the banks more or less concerned.

Even if the banks do not publish precise figures, nor are likely hundreds of thousands of customers still waiting for the list from their bank. Particularly annoying is the delay for those who expect a tax refund. "There are of course the possibility of the tax return as much as possible and to submit together with a covering letter with regard to the missing data," says Arno Gottschalk from the Consumer Bremen. "Who wants to play it safe, but should call the tax office and ask what to do now."

The customers of Comdirect got instead of the expected annual tax certificate in April, only one information. "To ensure the quality of the new annual tax certificate, short-term adjustments were made to the change in tax legislation (including the last application, letter of the Ministry of Finance of 22.12.2009). This may be the shipping of your annual certification to end delay in May 2010, had the Comdirect know their customers.

But it seems not only on its own payroll system are that the bank does not provide the annual tax certificates. The Comdirect point to the new law, according to the investment companies have up to eight months to provide all the control data of the last fiscal year. "If the investment companies in May have still not provided a tax data for 2009, we will send you an annual tax certificate with regard to the lack of control data for submission to the Inland Revenue."

Yet so far should not happen. "We believe that we can send up to the end of May all customers annual tax certificate," says Christiane Krämer of the Comdirect. Exceptions could be particularly complex cases. Various aspects have led to the delay. "The flat tax have resulted entirely new tax requirements. For this had to be developed a new IT system. This had the year always new legal provisions are being implemented, "said the spokeswoman.

Until the end of May, all customers will receive a certificate of annual tax

Much later than last year, the German bank has begun to mail the tax certificates. Why the "legal requirements" are. "More than 80 percent of our customers but have already received mail," says Anke Veil, spokeswoman for the institute. "And we believe that are sent until the end of May all the certificates." The IT transformation to the new requirements is very complex and have taken some time, so it had come to the delay. "A computer chaos did not exist," she says. "Complex depots had a slightly longer processing time."

Also waiting in the Targobank still customers on the preparation of their capital gains. "This affects only those customers who have a securities account, all others have already been to 23 March will receive their certificates, "says spokesman Peter Herkenhoff Targobank. "By 15 May would also give depositors their tax certificate. "The Düsseldorf Bank has informed its customers in early April about the delay. "Even in our very complex tax rules are implemented technically," it said in a note to clients. "This means that the costs are tax certificates of investment customers have unfortunately moved into May." The customers recommended the bank, if necessary, the tax office an extension of time beyond 31 to apply for May because.