Germany Raises Social Income Tax Thresholds for 2016

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Dec. 22— Increased income ceilings for contributing to pensions and health insurance have been approved by Germany's federal cabinet, the German federal government said Nov. 27. The new ceilings will be effective Jan. 1, 2016.

In western Germany, the pension contribution ceiling will increase to 6,200 euros ($6,800) from 6,050 euros ($6,635) per month or to 74,400 euros ($81,595) from 72,600 euros ($79,620) per year. The pension contribution ceiling will increase in areas of the former East Germany to 5,400 euros ($5,924) from 5,200 euros ($5,704) per month or to 64,800 euros ($71,086) from 62,400 ($68,453) euros per year.

Any wages greater than the income limit are not subject to required pension contributions. Health insurance and pension rates will remain the same for 2016. The rates are 7.3 percent for health insurance for both employers and employees and 9.35 percent for pension insurance for employers and employees.

In addition, the income threshold for contributing to compulsory health insurance will increase uniformly across the country to 4,237.50 euros ($4,649) from 4,125 euros ($4,525) per month and to 50,850 euros ($55,782) from 49,500 euros ($54,302) per year.

The new amounts were proposed in October.

Any wages greater than the income threshold are not subject to health insurance contributions but additional contributions can be made voluntarily.