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Leaving the Church Declaration

Withdrawal from a church, religious community or ideological community must be declared to the competent authority.

Process flow

The declaration of resignation must be submitted in person.

The change of religious affiliation under registration law is transmitted electronically by the competent authority to the tax authorities. The employer automatically learns of leaving the church by retrieving the electronic wage tax deduction characteristics (ELStAM), which are stored at the Federal Central Tax Office (BZSt).

An interview with the tax office is therefore no longer necessary, the employee must inform the employer accordingly.

Who should I contact?

The responsibility lies with the municipality, the Joint Community and the city in which you have your domicile or habitual residence.


  • 14 years of age
  • Persons under the age of 14:
    • The legally represented person who is entitled to care for the person (parents, possibly a parent) can declare that he or she has left the Church.
  • Children who have reached the age of 12
    • The resignation cannot be declared against their will.

Which documents are required?

  • Identity card or passport
  • if available: baptismal certificate

What are the fees?

Fee: 30,00 EUR
Payment in advance: No
Leaving the Church

What deadlines do I have to pay attention to?

Leaving the Church takes effect on the day of the declaration. However, the church tax liability ends only at the end of the calendar month in which the declaration became effective.


The text was automatically translated based on the German content.

Technically approved by

Lower Saxony Ministry of the Interior and Sport

Source: Serviceportal Niedersachsen (Portalverbund des Bundes und der Länder)