Tech is online again: That’s why the online tax return failed

If you want to do your tax return via, you need strong nerves at the moment. The online tax return page is overloaded and was even offline at times. The reason for the problems.

Update July 11, 4:45 p.m.:

The maintenance work is over, is available again. How reliable the site works remains to be seen.

New embarrassing details are becoming known about the Elster failure. As the WDR writes, “well over 100,000 simultaneous accesses” were enough to bring the Elster servers to their knees. Although the tax authorities knew that around 36 million owners of houses, apartments and land had to submit the declaration between July 1, 2022 and October 31, 2022 and that they should expressly use and no paper forms. But although the tax authorities could know that an avalanche of access to would roll in, the servers were not designed sufficiently for this.

Incidentally, the authorities rule out a hacker attack.

The interface to Elster is not affected by the official IT disaster. So if you want a control software like

Wise tax

or the

Tax Savings Statement

can submit his tax return even if is disrupted.

The new property tax will be calculated from the data of the declaration submitted by October 31, 2022. The new property tax will probably not be levied for the first time until 2025.

update end

The tax authorities pulled the ripcord this afternoon and took offline. Anyone who called up saw this text: is offline: That's why there are now problems with the online tax return

Enlarge is offline: That’s why there are now problems with the online tax return


“Maintenance work

Due to technical maintenance work, is currently unavailable. The maintenance work is expected to be completed in the course of the afternoon. We apologize for the inconvenience.”

Tip: Users from these eleven federal states can use this website of the Federal Ministry of Finance to submit their property tax return:

  • Berlin

  • Brandenburg

  • Bremen

  • Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania

  • North Rhine-Westphalia

  • Rhineland-Palatinate

  • Saarland

  • Saxony

  • Saxony-Anhalt

  • Schleswig Holstein

  • Thuringia

Access to has been disrupted since the weekend. Anyone who wanted to complete their tax return or property tax return via the tax office’s online portal saw error messages or could watch how the desired page in the browser did not open for several minutes. Sometimes there were also disconnections and in one case we suddenly got to see a black page. was/is overloaded

The reason for the problems with was and still is apparently too many hits on the site. The property tax return should in turn be responsible for this. Based on a decision by the Federal Constitutional Court, all owners of apartments, houses and other properties must surrender these from July 1st and by October 31st, 2022 at the latest. Apparently many taxpayers tried that last weekend – and brought to the brink of collapse.

On you can read:

“Restrictions on availability

“Due to the enormous interest in the forms for the property tax reform, there are currently restrictions on availability. We are already working hard to be able to provide you with the quality you are used to as quickly as possible.”

And: “Restrictions when using the ElsterSmart app

It is currently not possible to use Mein ELSTER using the ElsterSmart app if the ElsterSmart app and Mein ELSTER are used on different devices (e.g. if you have installed ElsterSmart on your smartphone or tablet, but Mein ELSTER in the browser on your use PC).”

You can read that on

However, the use of was/is not completely impossible. With enough patience, you could definitely hand in the property tax return forms yesterday. But this required iron nerves and the willingness to fill out one or the other form twice.

Of the

Mockery on social networks was not long in coming,
the hashtag #elster was unmistakable on Twitter.

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