Investing as a German Investor

Modified on Thu, 12 Oct 2023 at 06:26 AM

If you are a German citizen – and you do not have an ITIN – we will require additional information in order to process your investments.

Please note that credit cards are often declined for German investors. For this reason, we strongly reccomend sending all funds by wire transfer only.'

TIN for German Investors

Germany uses several different tax identification numbers.

The Steueridentifikationsnummer (Steuer-ID) is an 11-digit number assigned to every German resident by the Finanzamt. This TIN is permanent and never changes.

The Steuernummer (St-Nr) is a 10 or 11-digit number assigned to freelancers and businesses. This number is also assigned by the Finanzamt. This TIN is unique, but not permanent; If your business moves to a different Finanzamt's area, it will get a new Steuernummer.

The Umsatzsteuer-ID (USt-IdNr) is a 9-digit German VAT number. You get a VAT number when you register your business with the Finanzamt. You only get a VAT number if your business charges VAT. Usually, small businesses (Kleinunternehmer) don't have a VAT number, because they don't need to charge VAT. [source]

For simplicity sake, please use 000-00-0000 for any fields requesting a social security number, EIN, or other tax identification number.

Investing with Retirement Accounts for German Investors

There are two private pension plans available to people living and working in Germany.

The first is the Riester-Rente or Förder-Rente plan.

The second type of personal pension plan available is the Rürup-Rente, or Basis-Rente, plan. This plan is geared more toward individuals who are freelancers, self-employed, and high-income earners.

However, we have not seen any evidence that these funds can be invested in the private investment opportunities listed on Equifund.

AML/KYC For German Investors

As a reminder, all non-US investors are required to submit additional documentation for identify verification.

In order to expedite the AML/KYC check, please upload the following documents to your account prior to making an investment, or immediately after doing so:

  • A valid government-issued identification: state-issued identification card, driver's license, or federally-issued passport are accepted. Military IDs are not accepted.

  • Proof of address (in English): Must be a utility bill, bank statement, or letter from a government agency, dated within the last 90 days.

Please be advised. That all proof of address documentation must be in English. For investors whose native language is not English, they may request an official translation of any accepted document, or otherwise request an “address verification” document from a financial institution in English.

The easiest way to get this done is to ask your bank for a document, on letterhead, stating something to the effect of "We certify that [Name of Investor] lives at [Address]"

Please be advised that we cannot legally process your transaction without these documents.

For more information on our AML/KYC policies – along with a step-by-step walkthrough on how to upload your documents – please refer to our knowledge base.

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