German courts rule techno is officially considered music in landmark decision for clubs
German clubs will now be taxed at the same rate as traditional concert venues in a new ruling by Germany’s federal fiscal court BFH—a major win for the clubbing industry. The court agreed with plaintiffs, including Berlin’s legendary Berghain club, that they should not have to pay the standard 19 percent value-added tax on ticket sales when concert venues enjoy a lower rate of only seven percent.
The ruling took place on October 29, and the rationale behind the ruling was that “the average visitor” was at the venue primarily for the music and DJs, similarly to concerts. Regardless of the artist being a singer, an instrumentalist, or a DJ, the reason for purchasing the ticket remains the same, to enjoy a musical performance.
The presiding judge stated, “they perform their own new pieces of music using instruments in the broader sense, to create new sound sequences that have their own character.”
The ruling is a victory for the severely impacted club industry amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Germany has been internationally leading the way in improvising and finding ways to hold socially distanced raves, and now the clubs will be able to keep more of the profits on ticket sales thanks to this landmark ruling officially validating club music as exactly what it is—music.
H/T: The Local
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