Updated 11 months ago

With the Greek taxation system constantly changing to accommodate the ever-evolving austerity measures, it’s probably a good idea to not try and file taxes on your own. Most Greeks don’t, either: although the online tax-filing system only recently became available to everyone, the majority of the population still hires an accountant to take care of things. Find one who can walk you through the technicalities and read below for some of the key things you need to know.

One of the long-standing problems in Greece, has been the lax taxation and tax-evasion. But since 2010, the government has implemented (and keeps implementing) a significant number of new tax measures. The changes that occurred at the beginning of 2017 involved higher value-added taxes and higher duties on tobacco products, coffee, automotive fuels, as well as a higher surcharge on broadband, subscription TV, and landline telephone bills. It is important to consult with your accountant at all times, so that you are aware of the current situation and how it may affect you.

Conditions

To pay taxes in Greece, you’ll need one of the following:

  • permanent residence in Greece;
  • to have spent over 183 days in the country during any calendar year;
  • to be employed or carrying out paid professional activities in Greece (unless they’re secondary to business activities conducted in your home country)'
  • to have investments or business in Greece; or
  • to have an annual income over 3,000 euros that comes from salaries, pensions, self-employment, alimony from a spouse (child support is not included), or agricultural activities.

Even in the event that you have no taxable income, you still need to file a tax return if you own a car (a motorcycle, a boat or an aircraft), property, you are a partner in a limited liability company, you’re buying or constructing a building, earning income by letting property or land or own a swimming pool that’s bigger than 25m2 (you must declare an income of at least 11,600 euros for an outdoor pool and 17,400 euros for an indoor one).

If you are taxed in Greece only on your Greek source income, you are no longer required to provide the Greek tax authorities with documentation supporting your non-Greek tax residence status: you are only subject to tax on income from Greek sources. Greece has double-taxation treaties with several countries, including: Argentina, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Egypt, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, the Republic of Korea, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Romania, the Slovak Republic, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Kingdom and the US.

Types of taxes

In general, individual taxpayers in Greece have to pay the following:

  • income tax (see above the point for annual income)
  • social security tax, deducted at source
  • capital tax (aka tax on inheritance/gifts inter vivos/lottery gains and tax on the transfer of real property)
  • value added tax (VAT) which is an indirect tax applying on the basic price of all products and services available in the country

Income tax

Subject to tax is your total net income that is produced in Greece or abroad. The income which is taxed is the sum of income from all sources, after deduction of certain recognised expenses related to that income. The sources of income are categorised in the Greek Income Tax Code (I.C.T.) as follows:

  • real property
  • financial instruments/mobile values
  • business activities
  • agricultural activities.
  • salaried services
  • services of liberal professionals and any other sources

Tax brackets

The brackets for 2017 are as follows (this keeps changing, so please consult your accountant):

  • A maximum of 8,636 euros per annum – 0 % (or 9,090 if you have kids)
  • From 8,637 (or 9,091 for people with kids) to 20,000 εuros per annum – 22 %
  • From 20,001 to 29,999 euros per annum – 29 %
  • From 30,000 to 39,999 euros per annum – 37 %
  • Beyond 40,000 euros per annum – 45 %

Additional information

Tax is imposed in every financial year for income produced during the previous financial year. The financial year is the period between 1st of January and 31st of December of the same calendar year (article 3 of the ICT). The deadline for filing your taxes usually gets an extension (this year got extended up to 17 July) but you should check with your accountant for specifics. Bear in mind that if you’re self-employed you need to file your taxes 5 times a year -- once at the end of every quarter and once at the end of the year like everyone else.

 Useful links:

Ministry of Finances

We do our best to provide accurate and up to date information. However, if you have noticed any inaccuracies in this article, please let us know in the comments section below.