Information for entrepreneurs, freelancers and start-ups

Information for businesses and companies

In the following, we have compiled interesting websites on which you can find information and advice when it comes to assuming and exercising trade, craft and freelance activities as well as links to public registers.

Information on trade and business in Berlin

Berlin Chamber of Commerce and Industry (IHK)

The IHK Berlin is the association of Berlin companies. It retains an overview of the interests of all its affiliated companies and promotes the region’s economy in this regard.

Berlin Chamber of Craft Trades (HWK)

On the HWK web page, you can get advice from start-ups in craft professions, information on the Register of Craft Business, exception procedures, undeclared labour, laws governing the craft sector as well as information leaflets and applications.

Information on independent professions

Berlin Association of Liberal Professions (VFB)

VFB Berlin represents more than 26,000 Berlin freelancers from the following professions: Health care, legal, tax and business consultancy professions, technical independent professions as well as artistic, publishing and educational independent professions.

For architects: Berlin Chamber of Architects

The Berlin Chamber of Architects provides advice in questions of, inter alia, registration in the Architect List and Town Planner List and offer cost-free and non-binding information on a variety of subject areas.

For civil engineers: Berlin Construction Industry Chamber (BK)

The BK Berlin is the statutory professional association of all engineers working in the construction sector in the State of Berlin. Here you can find information on law, membership, expert accreditation as well as ongoing and further education.

For lawyers: Berlin Bar Association

The Berlin Bar Association is the statutory professional association of all lawyers registered in Berlin. It gives an overview of information on legislation relating to the profession amongst other things.

For tax advisers: Berlin Chamber of Tax Advisors

On the Chamber of Tax Advisors’ website you will find all tax advisors, tax agents and tax advisory companies operating in Berlin, information on training and licencing as well information relating to the professional register.

For livestock owners and vets: Berlin Chamber of Veterinarians

The Berlin Chamber of Veterinarians is a self-governing body of the veterinary profession based on Berlin professional chamber legislation. Here you will find addresses, dates and information on the subject of animal health.

For auditors: Chamber of Financial Auditors

The Chamber of Financial Auditors is a public body whose members include all financial auditors, certified chartered accountants and auditing companies and bookkeeping firms in Germany.

Advice and support for start-ups and companies

Berlin Business Start-up Network

The portal pools a variety of counselling bodies and service offerings specific to start-ups in Berlin and is a point of contact for those starting up businesses and young companies.

Business Welcome Center

The “Business Welcome Center” is a service of the IHK Berlin which assists foreign companies and start-ups as well as skilled workers in the founding and establishment in Berlin.

Business Location Center (BLC)

The BLC supports you in opting for Berlin as a location. If you have plans to set up in Berlin or increase growth at a site, you can benefit from the know-how and sector knowledge of the consultants.

Enterprise Europe Network (EEN)

The EEN Berlin Brandenburg provides information and advice on innovation-oriented developments, initiatives and programmes of the European Union and assists you in searching for business and technology partners.

Creation and growth in Berlin

Everything you need to know about founding and funding in Berlin: potential funding partners, founding and start-up support, innovation promotion, investment promotion, foreign trade and developmental cooperation, European Structural Funds etc.

Information for experts

Berlin Chamber of Commerce and Industry (IHK)

Everything you need to know in relation to expert services: general information, finding experts in the expert directory, becoming an expert, further training programmes and much more.

Berlin Chamber of Craft Trades (HWK)

Here you get information on the applications for the post of a publicly appointed and certified expert as well as a database with all certified experts by trade and location (expert database).

Berlin Construction Industry Chamber (BK)

Accreditation of registered expert inspectors, appointment of experts, nationwide directory, search for experts.

Environment (water)

Examination regulations for the examination for appointment as an inspector of a recognised expert body under Section 5 of the Berlin Indirect Discharge Regulation (IndV) for the sector of waste water discharges. .

Information on legislation and taxes

Courts in Berlin – Senate Department for Justice and Consumer Protection

Overview of all courts in the State of Berlin (Constitutional Court, Superior Court of Justice, Regional Court, District Court, Supreme Administrative Court, Administrative Court, Social Welfare Court, Fiscal Court, Employment Tribunals).

Extrajudicial legal consultancy

Publication platform of the state judicial administrations with regard to the provision of legal services in the sectors of debt collection services, pension consultancy, legal services in a foreign law as well as registered licence holders.

‘Regulations for the provision of services and works’ handbook

The handbook is aimed particularly at companies that commission or provide cross-border services.

Employment law brochure

Information for employees on the issues of job placement, the conclusion of employment contracts, the obligations of the employee and the employer, termination and dismissal protection.

Secondment of employees: residence permit, work permit

Regulations to be observed by non-German citizens and their employers/clients

Social insurance registration process: company number

Pages on company registration number allocation, on the registration system, on the key list and on the industry branch with all important information and forms.

Tax offices and taxes – Senate Department of Finance

Search for relevant tax office, information for taxpayers, and tax revenue of the State of Berlin as well as news and downloads on the subject of taxation.

Tax info centre of the Federal Central Tax Office

Tax law for investors, the Federal Revenue Administration, the revenue administrations of the states, tasks of the Federal Central Office and much more

Federal Ministry of Finance

Information about types of tax, international tax law, tax estimates and tax revenue, legislation and draft bills as well as other tax issues.

Public register

e-information – access trade information online

Berlin is the first major German city to offer comprehensive online information from the trade register. You may freely search the basic data held for Berlin companies.

Commercial register – shared register portal of the states

Electronic commercial, co-operative and partnership register and, to some extent, also association register of all federal states in Germany as well as announcements for the register (publications).

Commercial central register

Commercial central register broken down into natural and legal persons containing the following: entries, administrative decisions, waivers, fining decisions, criminal offence convictions.

Register of companies

Search for important company data requiring publication and access to the electronic registers of companies, cooperatives and partnerships.

Announcements concerning the insolvency proceedings

The insolvency courts of the Federal Republic of Germany publish announcements on this site that should be made if insolvency proceedings have been applied for before court.

German Federal Bar – nationwide official directory of lawyers

Search for all lawyers registered in Germany, European lawyers as well as practicing lawyers from different states.

Chimney sweep register

Electronic register of persons who fulfil the requirements for the independent exercise of chimney sweep work.

Groups, associations and organisations

Berlin Partner for Business and Technology

Business and technology support for companies, investors and scientific institutions in Berlin (support in deciding on a location and on-site implementation).

Berlin Investment Bank

The IBB is the State of Berlin’s development bank which actively contributes to the development of Berlin as a business location with its business development work. It is a point of contact in all real estate-related financing queries.

Berlin Consumers’ Office

The experts at the Berlin Consumers’ Office provide information, advice and support with regard to consumer-relevant issues and questions as well as lending legal assistance.

Federal Association of Income Tax Societies

The Federal Association of Income Tax Societies (BDL) represents the shared interest of income tax societies and their members vis-à-vis the legislator and tax administration.

Other service portals

Service portal of the State of Berlin (administration guide)

Systematic registration of all collective agreements valid in Berlin and Brandenburg, information from collective agreements, the option of viewing collective agreements, information for social insurance agencies, etc. Furthermore a list of services from A to Z are described in english. You can find some informations about instance Insurance consultant or Insurance intermediary, etc.

Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy – government agency help site

All start-up formalities and links to the Points of Single Contact in other German federal states at a glance.