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I am planning to move to Germany on a Spouse Visa. My partner (also Indian) is working in Germany. Is it possible to work for an Indian company remotely in Germany?

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Yes, your Spouse Visa does allow you to take any type of work a German citizen would, but:

  • Working for a German branch (located in Germany) of the Indian company as an employee is fine
  • Working as an independent contractor for the Indian Company is not really permitted (as an independent contractor/freelancer, you are required to have more than one client. Working for a single client exclusively is considered a fraudulent avoidance of worker protection laws).
  • Starting your own company and receiving orders and sending invoices to the Indian company would be fine (basically the same as freelancer but with stricter general regulations and more freedoms concerning clients)
  • Working as a regular employee for the Indian company, just physically residing in Germany is possible, but you need a specialized tax accountant to calculate that for you. Because you must pay taxes in Germany when you are physically here, and India might make you pay taxes in India, too, since the work was used there. So without any special taxation laws in India and/or Germany, you would pay taxes twice and that is a lot of money wasted.

Is it legal and possible? Yes. Is it worth doing it? You will need to find a good specialized tax accountant to find that out. And you need to find that out up front, because tax authorities are not people you want to have problems with, neither in Germany, nor in India.


I did not mean to paint the Finanzamt (German tax authorities) in a bad light though. Of all the Germans Amts you had to deal with so far to be where you are today, those guys are the most helpful. If you tell them you would like to make money and you need help to give them their share (taxes) they'll be happy as pie and explain it in detail. You just need a tax accountant that you pay, because while those guys will help you making it legally sound, only your tax accountant will actually help you keep as much money to yourself as you can.

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  • When you write "as a dependent" I understand this means you will not be self-employed and you have no intention to start your own business and write invoices, but you will receive a salary from the Indian company, right? – TorstenS Jan 6 at 10:25
  • Uh, the OP was the only one to use that wording and I took it to mean as a dependent in terms of the family unification visa. That's why I made the list of options. – nvoigt Jan 6 at 11:00
  • You're right. I possibly misunderstood "dependent" as "employee". This is kind of a false friend because in German there is the term "abhängig Beschäftigter" which is the legal definition of "employee" versus "freelancer" or "contractor". In case the question of the OP is more like "what are my options to make money while I live in Germany" then your list makes way more sense. If kind of raises a different yet interesting question. which I felt like asking: expatriates.stackexchange.com/questions/21523/… – TorstenS Jan 7 at 14:45

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