File Online Tax Returns with ELSTER

Filing your tax return online? Not that hard when you use the free tax software by ELSTER. Not only is it easier for you to submit your tax return, but also these extra advantages.


    ELSTER: Advantages of Electronic Data Transmission

    ELSTER stands for ‘ektronische Steuererklärung’ or “electronic tax return”. The German tax administration introduced ELSTER in 2005 to make tax-related tasks easier for taxpayers and tax offices. Soon, processing tax returns will be a paper-free and electronic process. This spares the environment and, more importantly, your nerves!

    Your advantages with ELSTER:

    • No working with pen and paper
    • Entered data saved easily
    • Fewer mistakes when filling out the forms
    • Pre-filled tax return (VaSt)
    • Electronic submission of tax returns
    • Fewer receipts and less paperwork
    • Preferred and fast processing at the tax office
    • High security through encryption of your data
    • ELSTER is completely free

    At, you can choose whether you want to submit your tax return online via the ElsterOnline portal (in your browser).

    Prepare your own tax return


    For anyone who wants to file an easy and secure tax return themselves. Free refund calculation, pay only upon submission.

    Receive an advance calculation of your refund and pay only when you turn it in

    Guided and intuitive process with simple questions

    Automatic data retrieval: simply retrieve your income data from the tax office and have it pre-filled

    The general deadline applies (September 02)

    €59.99 for married couples or registered partnerships looking to file a tax return together

    Get your tax assessment for free and only pay when you submit your return

    Our Expert Service does it for you

    From €69.99

    For those who are unsure or can't find the time – hand your taxes to an expert.

    Provide a few necessary documents in minutes

    An independent tax advisor will prepare and submit your tax return for you

    Personalised document upload: Only submit documents that are completely necessary

    Detailed check of your information

    Benefit from an extended tax deadline (April 30, 2026)

    Only pay when you receive the result of your tax assessment


    ElsterOnline or ElsterFormular?


    ElsterFormular was a free tax filing software that you could download to fill out forms on your computer. It's not available from the tax year 2019 any more, though.

    Instead, you need to file your tax return via the ElsterOnline portal or via paper forms.


    ElsterFormular was made available for the last time in 2020 for tax returns for 2019. You can no longer file the income tax return for 2020 with ElsterFormular.

    In a fix?

    Taxfix offers an uncomplicated and fast solution to the discontinuation of ELSTER. Taxfix allows you to get your tax refund without any prior tax knowledge. It guides you through your tax return with simple multiple-choice questions. After answering the questions, you will immediately receive your tax refund calculation from our tax experts.

    ElsterOnline Portal

    The ElsterOnline portal offers the option of filling out and submitting all tax forms via the web browser. To do this, you have to register and download a particular file: the ‘certificate’ or ‘Zertifikatsdatei’. By now, there are other options to register, but they mean additional effort. This tool lets you file your online tax return securely and transparently.


    Submit Your Tax Return Online for Free

    ElsterOnline and ElsterFormular are free options for filing your tax return online. For a good headstart with ELSTER, the Taxfix blog provides all the tax tips and instructions you need.

    We explain how you can file your tax return online with ELSTER. It’s easy and stress-free!

    ELSTER complicated and taking too long? With Taxfix you can complete your tax return in less than half an hour. You need zero tax knowledge— just your smartphone or PC. Begin your tax return.

    Scan your income tax certificate, and you're done!

    Get it early! Submit now so the tax office takes care of your tax return early. Simply upload your income tax certificate and answer the simple questions.

    Start now for free


    The Taxfix App for Easy Online Tax Returns

    If you want a lightning-fast tax filing process that feels effortless even without knowledge of taxes, you have something in common with Taxfix. Instead of filling out complicated forms, you answer simplified questions that guide you through your personal tax filing process.

    Your tax return will be ready in less than half an hour. Tax experts at Taxfix calculate how high your expected tax refund will be. If you so choose, you can send your tax return straight to the tax office through Taxfix. All data is encrypted for maximum security.

    It takes bare minutes to have your tax refund estimated by our tax calculator in advance.

    If that’s not enough, as a Taxfix user, you also get the advantage of retrieving documents through a ‘pre-filled’ tax return system (VaSt). The tax return through app is therefore even easier and faster. You can find out more about this in the app.

    About Taxfix

    With Taxfix, you can complete your tax returns from 2019-2022, in no time at all. No tax knowledge is necessary – simply choose to complete your Taxfix tax return yourself, or have an independent tax advisor do it for you. What are you waiting for?

    Start now