A hospitality receipt is a template used to document a business meal or other hospitality event with clients or potential clients. This is important in order to later be able to deduct these expenses from your taxes. Whether you are a freelancer or an entrepreneur of a corporation is irrelevant for this entertainment receipt.
Important: The entertainment receipt is not the same as the cash receipt. It is an additional document that is submitted to the tax office along with the receipt. If you forget the entertainment receipt, you cannot claim the corresponding business meal as a business expense for tax purposes.
It is part of everyday business life to go out for a leisurely meal with business partners from time to time. A business meal can serve various purposes: Maintaining existing contacts, marketing, building business contacts, planning projects, etc. Depending on the occasion, it can take place in the simple pizzeria next door, in a middle-class restaurant or in a noble temple of pleasure.
In order for your company to claim the tax deduction of 70 percent of the expenses, it is important that you fill out the entertainment voucher correctly. Pay attention to some mandatory information that a properly completed entertainment voucher must contain.
If the invoice exceeds the amount of 150 euros, the host must also include the name and address of the person providing the service, i.e. the host. In the case of small-value invoices, only the tax information must be included in addition to the personal data and the exact listing of the food and beverages. The entertainment receipt for the small-amount invoice must be signed by the host. In order to reduce the administrative burden, the limit for small-value invoices was raised to 250 euros gross retroactively to 01.01.2017 when the Second Bureaucracy Relief Act came into force in May 2017.
Previously, the limit for simplified invoicing was 150 euros gross. In both cases, however, you must complete a hospitality voucher. For hospitality receipts of more than 150 euros, additional information must be provided:
A tip: Have tips handwritten and filled in on the hospitality receipt - up to 70 percent of the amount is tax-deductible as a business expense.
Can hospitality on my private premises also be deducted?
The entertainment receipt must be completed by the host. Therefore, you can only deduct business meals or business meetings in a restaurant or café. If you hold the meeting at your private premises, the expenses cannot be claimed as a business meal.
What is the retention period for entertainment receipts?
If entertainment receipts are settled directly via the company cash register, the entertainment expenses must be recorded in the cash book and assigned a sequential number. A hospitality receipt and the associated invoice are subject to the statutory retention requirement and must be retained for ten years.
Do all persons participating have to be named?
Yes, all persons attending must be named on the entertainment receipt.
Do the addresses of the persons being entertained have to be included?
No, only the address of the host (the person hosted) must be indicated.
Who is the host?
The person being hosted is not the host, but the inviting host.
Can the expenses of other persons involved in the meal, such as my partner, be included on the sample hospitality receipt?
The law stipulates that a meal is only tax deductible if all parties involved are also directly involved. This means that only the costs for persons participating in negotiations or meetings, for example, are deductible.
If the spouse participates in a business meal as a private individual without a business reason, a deduction as a business expense is not possible. If the spouse is a co-owner, a pro rata deduction as a business expense is possible. If the spouse is employed by the company, a pro rata deduction as a business expense is possible if there is a professional relationship with the invited guests.
Where should the tip be entered and is it deductible?
Have the innkeeper or waiter handwrite the tip on the bill, as it is usually not automatically listed on the bill. Then you can also deduct 70 percent of the tip as a business expense.
Can I also present the sample hospitality voucher abroad?
You can use the hospitality voucher to claim hospitality expenses not only in Germany. In many industries, it is necessary for a business meal to take place abroad. But regardless of whether it takes place in Germany or abroad, you must submit a hospitality receipt to the tax office in any case. In countries where you do not receive a proper hospitality receipt, a foreign invoice is sometimes sufficient as proof. This can also be handwritten. In order for it to be recognized by the tax office, you must in any case ensure that the following details are included:
In this case, create a separate receipt with all the information that should be on an invoice and a receipt. If you paid by credit card, attach the credit card statement. You can find the prices of individual meals and drinks from the restaurant menu, for example, and attach them.
Correctly completing a hospitality receipt is a necessary hurdle to claiming business meals for tax purposes. With our hospitality voucher sample template and completion guide, you are on the safe side of submitting the correct form correctly filled out for tax purposes.
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