Meaning of Income Tax Brackets 2


Do you want to calculate your income tax? With our income tax calculator you can calculate this online for free!

This checklist reveals whether you belong to the correct income tax class:

Income tax class target group
Income tax class I Single
Persons separated
Income tax class II single parent
Income tax class III married high earners
married single earners
Income tax class IV Married people with roughly the same income
Income tax class V married low wage earners
Income tax class VI Second job, part-time
several jobs


How and when can you change the income tax bracket?

If married couples have recognized that a change in tax class is an option, they can make use of this once a year. The deadline for this is November 30th. The form required for changing the tax class must be requested from the responsible tax office.

This approach is relatively new. Until December 2010, the municipalities were responsible for the process. So married couples can switch from tax class IV to tax class III and V by the end of November or be re-classified together in tax class IV.

Changes to the tax class are possible at any time if:

  • A spouse no longer receives a taxable wage.
  • A spouse has died.
  • The spouses have separated permanently or are divorced.
  • Employment is taken up after unemployment.
  • Single people have a child.
  • You take up another job in addition to your main job.

Nobody can change the tax class at their own discretion, with the exception of the possible combination of tax classes for married couples. A change in the income tax class is only indicated if the circumstances relevant to the respective tax class change.

When does a change make sense?

The change of tax class pays off for you if you belong to the following groups of people:

  • single parent
  • Married
  • Spouses expecting offspring
Group of people Explanation
single parent Single parents benefit when they switch to tax class II.
The relief amount of 1,908 euros per year for a child brings you monthly relief of 159 euros.
Married Anyone who marries is classified in tax class IV. If you earn roughly the same, you don’t need to change anything.
If the earnings are different, the combination III and V is worthwhile.
Those who are classified in tax class III pay less.
The spouse in income tax class V is increasingly asked to pay.
Spouses expecting offspring Are you married, both of you work and you can expect more than the minimum parental allowance of 300 euros.
Those who claim parental allowance change to income tax class III.
Parental allowance is calculated on the basis of the previous year’s net income.
If you want to change your tax bracket, you have to do so at least seven months before you are entitled to parental allowance.

Which income tax brackets for working spouses?

We have already pointed out that spouses are given a certain amount of freedom in choosing the tax class. Spouses are generally taxed together. This is the cheapest option for both of them. When the wage tax of a married employee is deducted, only one’s own wages can be used as a basis. Both salaries are only combined at the end of the year in order to determine the annual tax.

It is not uncommon for too little or too much wage tax to be withheld over the course of the year. To ensure that the annual result is as accurate as possible, married couples can use two tax bracket combinations and the factor method.

What are your options and what is the best choice?

Merit forms the basis. Based on the income, you can decide whether a change of income tax bracket is worthwhile.

The following models are possible:

Tax class combination When is it useful?
IV / IV Income roughly the same
difference maximum ten percent
III / V clear differences in the income
ratio at 60/40 and more
IV / IV with factor different incomes

Tax class combination IV / IV

If both spouses earn roughly the same, this option is your best bet. Both partners are deducted taxes and do not have to submit a joint tax return.

Tax class IV / IV with factor

With this option, a joint tax return must be submitted. The spouses pay their share of the gross income, even if the earnings are different.

Tax class combination III / V

We have already mentioned this model. The combination only makes sense if there are significant differences in earnings. The higher earner changes to income tax class III. Those who earn less can be classified in tax class V.

Which tax allowances can you register for the income tax brackets?

The tax-free amount represents the summary of possible tax-free amounts. Exemptions determine the amount up to which no taxes have to be paid. Tax allowances are thus an instrument to lower the annual income tax.

Income Tax Brackets 2