Company Registration Fees in Germany

| Date: 07.03.2024

Entrepreneurs and businesspeople looking to set up a company in Germany need to be aware of the costs involved in registering a UG or a GmbH. While the costs are quite similar for both, you must consider a few differences. In this article, we'll look at company registration fees in Germany for UG or GmbH business structures, including the notary fees, district court costs, and business registration fees.

We're basing this information on our years of experience, but it's important to recognise that there can still be outliers. Moreover, given Germany's decentralised incorporation system, the fees can vary widely depending on your city, your notary, and your specific arrangements with notarial staff and local authorities.

Notary Fees for UG and GmbH Company Registration

The state determines the notary fees for UG and GmbH company registration in Germany. These fees are very complicated to calculate, and it is rare for the same fee to accrue twice. However, the costs mainly depend on the type of protocol used, the number of pages, and the company's share capital.

Notary fees include the preparation of the articles of association and other documents, preparation of the list of shareholders, supporting activities of the notary, and registration in the Commercial Register. Additional costs may apply if there are multiple managing directors or if you need to translate your articles of association into different languages.

Banknotes with the heading 'Gebühren'

What is the Model Protocol?

If you are starting a GmbH, you can save money on company registration fees in Germany by starting with the model protocol (Musterprotokoll), a state-imposed model statute you cannot change. It contains only the bare essentials, such as name, company address, company purpose, shareholders, and managing directors. The notary fees start at 350 EUR with the model protocol and 750 EUR with standard articles of association (Normalsatzung). On the other hand, for a UG, the notary fees start at 180 EUR with the model protocol and 600 EUR with standard articles of association.

It's worth noting that entrepreneurs can save money by choosing a sample protocol. However, this option will not be suitable for companies with multiple shareholders or complex structures because the model protocol limits your company to three shareholders and one managing director.

The model protocol is an excellent tool if there is only one shareholder. This is because it is only possible to exempt the first managing director from the prohibition on self-contracting contained in § 181 of the German Civil Code (BGB or Bürgerliches Gesetzbuch). In the case of a change of managing director, either you must waive the exemption or you must rewrite the articles of association. When starting a business with several partners, it is always important to consider whether a custom and complete set of articles would make more sense. With good planning, it is possible to prevent or manage future disputes in the establishment and regulation phase.

Costs for District Court (Handelsregistereintragung) and Business Registration (Gewerbeanmeldung)

The registration of a UG or GmbH company in Germany takes place in the trade register with the responsible district court. In 2022, the cost for this increased from 150 EUR to 200 EUR, but at the same time, you can now download commercial register excerpts free of charge from Other founding documents are also publicly viewable and downloadable free of charge.

The cost for business registration varies depending on the municipality, usually between 15 EUR and 55 EUR. You may also incur extra fees for activities that require a business license or if the founder's credibility needs validation with a certificate of good conduct and an extract from the commercial register.

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Summary of Costs for UG and GmbH Company Registration

The company registration fees in Germany for UG and GmbH include notary fees, district court costs, and business registration fees. The notary fees are variable and can be affected by the location within Germany, the type of protocol you use, the number of pages, and the company's share capital. For this reason, the model protocol may be a good option for any entrepreneurs looking to save money.

Our company offers full support for UG and GmbH company registration from A to Z, with the option for you to sign everything abroad. So contact us today to request a quote and get started on your business journey in Germany.