Employers with foreign employees in Austria should be prepared for increased audits by the Austrian authorities to check compliance with various tax payments such as income, corporate, social security and goods and services tax (VAT), and to ensure that a branch office or permanent place of business has not been established by the sending company, which would subject the sending company to Austrian corporate tax payments.
To remain compliant with Austrian law, employers should ensure they have the following documents on site on behalf of foreign workers, as authorities can require the documents to be provided immediately at the audit:
- Residence permits, visas or other proof of immigration status (passports or identification cards for EU nationals);
- KIAB/ZKO (foreign worker control) forms;
- Employment or assignment agreements;
- A1 Social Security Certificate / Social Security Waiver Certificate / Austrian Social Security Card (as applicable);
- Pay slips;
- Time records;
- Declaration of salary paid in Austria;
- Proof that employees have been paid the amount declared in immigration documents; and
- Proof that salaries meet minimum wage laws.
All of the above documents must be available in German and must be stored in Austria (electronic documents must be accessible by email or online). Authorities have the discretion to request additional documents.
Each individual violation can result in a fine of up to EUR 10,000 and/or blacklisting of violating companies.
What This Means for Employers and Foreign Nationals
Employers in Austria with foreign workers should work with their immigration and tax professionals to ensure they comply with the laws and should be prepared for an extensive audit.