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Tax guidelines and regulations for large money transfers into Europe

Both you and your recipient may be required to file.

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If your recipient lives in a country with a gift tax or if you’re sending money for business purposes, they may be required to pay taxes on the transfer. And you may be required to report it on your yearly tax return in the US — regardless of whether or not you owe anything.

How Europe regulates large remittances

Each country in Europe has its own laws on gift taxes — the tax you or your recipient pays when you gift money or property whose value is above a specified amount. Some countries exempt gifts from the burden of taxation altogether, while others consider the relationship of you to your gift beneficiary.

If the money is for business purposes, such as purchasing goods or receiving advice, your recipient will likely have to report it on their taxes as foreign income.

Here’s a general rundown of how European countries handle the gift tax.

CountryGift size exempt from taxation
AlbaniaNo gift tax
AndorraNo gift tax
ArmeniaNo gift tax
AustriaNo gift tax
AzerbaijanExempt from gift tax if received from family members
BelarusTax law provides exemption for inheritances and partial exemption for general gifts
Belgium3% to 30% of the gift amount
Bosnia and Herzegovina2% to 10% of the gift amount
Bulgaria0.4% to 0.8% on inheritances from family members and 3.3% to 6.6% for other beneficiaries
Croatia5% if gift is worth more than 50,000 HRK
CyprusNo gift tax
Czech Republic1% to 40% depending on degree of family relationship
DenmarkNo gift tax
EstoniaNo gift tax
Finland€1 to €4,999
France5% to 45% of gift amount, depending on degree of relationship
GeorgiaNo gift tax, though inheritance taxes depend on degree of relationship
GermanyRemote relatives or family typically pay higher taxes
GreeceVaries by relationship of gifter to giftee
Hungary2% to 40% of gift amount, depending on degree of relationship
IcelandGifts for special occasions are exempt provided they’re “not of extraordinary value”
IrelandVaries by relationship of gifter to giftee
ItalyUp to 1 million euros exempt for spouses, children and grandchildren
KazakhstanNo gift tax
LatviaNo gift tax
LiechtensteinNo gift tax
Lithuania€2,500 provided that gifts come from close relatives
Luxembourg0% to 48% of gift amount, depending on relationship to beneficiary
Macedonia2% to 5% of gift amount, depending on relationship to beneficiary
MaltaNo gift tax
MoldovaNo gift tax
MonacoRates vary depending on relationship to beneficiary
MontenegroNo gift tax
NetherlandsExempt up to 4,479 euros, depending on relationship to beneficiary, or up to 22,379 euros once in a child’s lifetime
NorwayNo gift tax
PolandRates vary by relationship of donor to donee
PortugalNo gift tax
RomaniaNo gift tax
RussiaNo gift tax
San MarinoUp to 1 million euros exempt for spouses, children and grandchildren
Serbia1.5% to 2.5%, depending on relationship to beneficiary
SlovakiaNo gift tax
Slovenia€5,000 for immediate successors
Spain7.65% to 34.00%, depending on value and relationship to beneficiary
SwedenNo gift tax
SwitzerlandNo gift tax
Turkey10% to 30%, depending on the gift’s value and relationship to beneficiary
UkraineNo gift tax
United KingdomNo gift tax
Vatican CityUp to 1 million euros exempt for spouses, children and grandchildren

Compare providers for your next large transfer to Europe

Our table lets you compare the services you can use to send money abroad. Compare services on transfer speeds and fees, then click Go to site when you're ready to send.
1 - 7 of 7
Name Product Filter Values Fastest Transfer Speed Fees (Pay by Bank Transfer)
Airwallex
Airwallex
Within minutes
$0
After spending $15k in your first 90 days, receive a one-time $500 bonus that will automatically be credited to your account on any FX conversion.
Airwallex can help you make business payments to 150+ countries in 60+ currencies.
OFX International Money Transfers (Business)
24 hours
$0
Business customers: Send safe, no-limit transfers with no fees and competitive exchange rates.
CurrencyTransfer for Business
24 hours
$0
Increase business efficiency with zero transaction fees and same-day transfers.
Xe Money Transfer for Business
24 hours
$0
Save your time and money with Xe Money Transfer for business.
Currencies Direct (business)
24 hours
$0
Minimizes costs of international transactions and offers custom solutions for business clients. Currencies Direct may call you to confirm your transfer, so be prepared for a phone call shortly after initiating a transfer.
Revolut
Revolut
Within minutes
From $0
Revolut offers international exchange rate for over 150+ currencies and transfers within 30 minutes.
Revolut
Revolut
Within minutes
From $0
Revolut offers international exchange rate for over 150+ currencies and transfers within 30 minutes.
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1 - 17 of 17
Name Product Filter Values Fastest Transfer Speed Fees (Pay by Bank Transfer)
OFX
24 hours
$0
OFX has no maximum limit transfers, with competitive exchange rates for 45+ currencies.
CurrencyTransfer
24 hours
$0
CurrencyTransfer lets you shop around for the best exchange rate on its online marketplace.
Wise (TransferWise)
Within minutes
From 0.41%
Wise uses the mid-market rate and transparent fees to help you send money in 45+ currencies.
OFX International Money Transfers (Business)
24 hours
$0
Business customers: Send safe, no-limit transfers with no fees and competitive exchange rates.
CurrencyTransfer for Business
24 hours
$0
Increase business efficiency with zero transaction fees and same-day transfers.
Revolut
Revolut
Within minutes
From $0
Revolut offers international exchange rate for over 150+ currencies and transfers within 30 minutes.
Currencies Direct
24 hours
$0
CurrenciesDirect makes transferring money abroad simple with bank-beating exchange rates. Currencies Direct may call you to confirm your transfer, so be prepared for a phone call shortly after initiating a transfer.
Revolut
Revolut
Within minutes
From $0
Revolut offers international exchange rate for over 150+ currencies and transfers within 30 minutes.
Currencies Direct (business)
24 hours
$0
Minimizes costs of international transactions and offers custom solutions for business clients. Currencies Direct may call you to confirm your transfer, so be prepared for a phone call shortly after initiating a transfer.
Xe
Within minutes
$3
Xe has fast transfers with low fees and a range of foreign currency tools.
Xe Money Transfer for Business
24 hours
$0
Save your time and money with Xe Money Transfer for business.
Revolut
Revolut
Within minutes
From $0
Revolut offers international exchange rate for over 150+ currencies and transfers within 30 minutes.
MoneyGram
Within minutes
From $0
First online transfer is free.
MoneyGram has fast cash pick-up transfers to more than 350,000 agent locations worldwide.
Cash App
Within minutes
From $0
Make payments to your friends and families easily from your phone with no transfer fees. Payments available to US bank accounts only.
Instarem
24 hours
From 0%
New Instarem customers will get a special FX rate and zero-fees on their first transfer.
Instarem offers offers rewards on every transaction.
Western Union
Within minutes
From $0
Enjoy $0 fee on your first online transfer. Western Union makes money from FX/currency exchange. Not valid on credit cards or sends to Cuba.
Western Union sends money online to friends and family in 200+ countries and territories around the world.
Airwallex
Airwallex
Within minutes
$0
After spending $15k in your first 90 days, receive a one-time $500 bonus that will automatically be credited to your account on any FX conversion.
Airwallex can help you make business payments to 150+ countries in 60+ currencies.
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What are the penalties in Europe if my recipient fails to file?

Just as US citizens are required to submit annual tax returns, so too are citizens of most European countries. If your recipient fails to declare a large remittance on their tax returns, they could face stiff financial penalties and even jail time.

In a post-9/11 world, financial institutions and independent transfer specialists are required to record the source of large transfers and report suspicious deposits to the government, which means that if your recipient doesn’t list a transfer on their taxes, it will likely be found out. Encourage your family and friends in Europe to declare large gifts to avoid further trouble down the road.

Do I have to report large transfers out of the US?

Yes. If you’re sending more than $10,000 for business purposes or $15,000 as a gift, or if you’re sending money to an overseas account in your name, you’ll likely be required to report it to the government.

By law, banks report all cash transactions that exceed $10,000 — and any transaction of any amount that alerts their suspicions. Independent money transfer specialists are sometimes required to report at thresholds as low as $1,000.

To avoid the severe penalties (including jail time) that could come with a failure to report large sums of money out of the country, speak with a professional to guarantee that everything is above board and complies with the laws of all countries involved.
Sending a lot of money out of the country? Know what the IRS expects of you.

How much money can I send to Europe?

The US government doesn’t put a cap on how much money you can send overseas. But some transfer providers do, so choose a limit-free provider like Xe if you’re planning a large transfer.

How my recipient in Europe get the money?

Depending on which provider you choose, your options include bank-to-bank transfers, cash pickups and transfers to mobile wallets.

If your loved one or associate is picking up the cash in person, they may need to show government-issued ID or a transaction confirmation number to prove they’re your intended recipient. For electronic transfers, they may not need to provide any additional information.

Confirm with your bank or independent money transfer provider the exact information your friends and family might need to receive your funds.

Bottom line

If you’re initiating a large overseas transfer, both you and your recipient may be required to report it on your taxes — and depending on which country they live in, they may need to pay a gift tax or report it as foreign income.

As with all international money transfers, compare providers to get the best deal before initiating a transfer, and be protect yourself from fraud by only sending money to people you know. Using a reputable provider can safeguard you from potential scams.

Frequently asked questions

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