Change in church tax deduction when joining the church

If you join a religious community or rejoin after leaving it that collects taxes, you must make a declaration to the religious community.

Important notes


Personal declaration of church entry or re-entry to the religious community.

Documents required

You do not need to submit any documents.

Please note

Church/religious taxes of five religious communities in Hamburg are administered by tax offices: Evangelical Lutheran, Roman Catholic, Old Catholic Church, Jewish Community, Evangelical Reformed Church.

Notes on church tax:
Information on the calculation of church tax can be obtained from the Nordkirche's free service number: 0800 - 118 12 04


The change in the church tax deduction characteristic will take effect on the 1st of the month following entry.

Procedure & Fees


  • You declare your entry or re-entry to the religious community (pastor). The pastor reports the entry to the church administration.
  • The religious community informs the local HamburgService about your entry.
  • The local HamburgService forwards the information electronically to the Federal Central Tax Office and the tax authorities.
  • The responsible authority makes the data about your changed wage tax characteristics available to the ELStAM in the database for employers.


There are no costs for you.

Legal notes

Legal basis

Title: Section 39e paragraph 3 Income Tax Act (EStG)


Service description

You join or rejoin a religious community that collects taxes by making a declaration to the relevant religious community. The local HamburgService is responsible for changes to religious affiliation, as the electronic payroll tax deduction features (ELStAM) are based on registration data. The tax offices cannot change religious affiliation.

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