How to be self-employed in Austria

Being self-employed here means a lot of extra hoops to jump through compared to countries like England and the US. It can be pretty complicated to set up your own business, register for the right trade license, deal with insurances and taxes etc. Here are some links where you can find lots of useful information and support.

Your first place to visit should be the WKO (Chamber of Commerce). They are friendly and offer a free start up consultation service for setting up your own business in Austria- from the initial idea, registering your business, getting the right trade license, through to final financing plans or questions on social insurances. The website is all in German, but they are also happy to help in English at the Graz office. They also hold regular workshops. They have several useful publications in German here and also a good one in English here. Plus a useful start up glossary in English here.

If you are looking to get education and qualifications  from abroad recognised in Austria – you can read more here and then contact Zebra in Graz who can provide free advice and assistance in many languages.

For taxes you will need to visit the Finanzamt which even Austrians hate to visit! They not known for being super friendly or speaking English, so I recommend bringing a German speaker with you. It’s also recommended to find a good accountant to help you prepare your taxes and advise on self employment tax deductions (home office, supplies etc).

I can also highly recommend the very useful Self Employed inAustria website with loads of useful information (in English!). Plus they have excellent book for purchase which includes all the latest law updates. Their facebook group is also very helpful & supportive and great for asking questions.

For more tips and updates on life in Graz, follow ‘IlovemyGraz‘ on facebook

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