Social insurances and income tax

Income taxes

In Germany some taxes are deducted directly from your salary.

  • Income tax: depends on the amount of your income and your tax bracket
  • Solidarity surcharge: is 5.5% of income tax and also depends on the tax class and the number of children.
  • Church tax: is 9% of income tax.

Social contributions

Germany has several compulsory insurances, so-called social insurances, which provide insurance against major life risks:

  • pension insurance for old age or in the event of reduced earning capacity,
  • health insurance for illness (costs for doctors and medicine)
  • nursing care insurance in the event that you become in need of care (persons without children pay a little more),
  • accident insurance which covers accidents at work, as well as
  • unemployment insurance which pays if you lose your job.

Employers usually pay half of the social contributions within the social insurance system. With accident insurance, employers pay the full premium and with health insurance you pay a little more than half. The other half is deducted directly from your gross salary.

Children and spouses are co-insured in the statutory health insurance.
Later you will receive additional pension benefits for each child.

Taxes and insurances at a glance



Your Portion

Income Tax (IT)

Tax Class 1


Church Tax

9 % of IT  

Solidarity surcharge

5,5 % of IT


Health insurance

15,5 % of salary

8,2 %

Nursing care insurance

(as from 23 years old without children)

1,95 % of salary

(2,2 % of salary)



Pension insurance

18,9 % of salary

9,45 %

Unemployment insurance

3 % of salary

1,5 %