Wage / Salary

It is difficult to compare Dutch and German salaries. There are differences in taxes withheld and social security contributions also differ. The actual net income also depends, for example, on the deduction of mortgage interest, child supplement, health insurance allowance, etc.

The wage is determined by collective agreements or the individual employment contract. From 1 January 2021, the legal minimum hourly wage for all persons aged 18 and over will be €10.63. In sectors where a collective agreement is in force, a higher minimum wage may have been set. There are also exceptions for certain groups, including young people under 18 and disabled people.

For an idea of what your pay slip may look like, here is an example:

This assumes the following:

  • it concerns someone who is not married or is married to a partner who has income in the Netherlands (tax class 1)
  • the employee does not have to pay church tax in Germany, this only applies to residents of Germany
  • the employee has compulsory or voluntary legal health insurance costs in Germany

What is striking is that the wage tax is relatively high. This makes a Dutch pay slip look more favourable. A married person whose Dutch income is below a certain limit with the income of their partner can be placed in a different tax class, namely tax class 3. This implies that the net salary per month will be about € 240 higher. You must take into account that the classification into tax classes is only the preliminary assessment for the final wage tax in Germany. If it turns out afterwards that the classification was not correct, you will have to expect a prompt claim for repayment. Find out in advance from the staff at the GrenzInfoPunkt or the tax office.

The social security contributions withheld are more or less comparable to the contributions withheld in the Netherlands.

  • Health insurance (often called KV) is comparable to the contributions for the Zorgverzekeringswet and Ziektewet in the Netherlands
  • Long-term care insurance (often called PV) is comparable to the contributions for the Wlz in the Netherlands
  • Pension insurance (often called RV) is comparable to the contributions for the AOW, Anw and WIA
  • Unemployment insurance (often called AV) is comparable to the contributions for the WW in the Netherlands

For health insurance, the employee does not pay a separate contribution to the health insurance fund. The net wage on the pay slip is really the net wage.

On the pay slip you only see the employee’s share of the contributions. Your employer pays these contributions and his employer’s contributions through the health insurance fund, at least if you are covered by legal health insurance.

Sample calculation

A trial calculation of a German wage can be made on Nettolohn.de orLohnspiegel.de, the gross-net calculator. You only need to enter a few details and adjust some of the information. You enter your gross wage, the tax class is 1 by default, you have to change the church tax liability to “no†and click on “Calculateâ€. The Nettolohn.de calculation programme can also take special circumstances into account, such as a company car.

On the www.werkeninduitsland.nl website you will find a calculation tool to get an indication of your net disposable income if you work in Germany. The child supplement, for example, is also taken into account.