Auto-Entrepreneur Questions - Newbie

Hi all. This is my first posting since joining so I hope to meet some new friends on here. I am Ralph from Edinburgh and I am living in the Midi-Pyrenees with my PACS partner Rossi who is in her 9th month of pregnancy and it will be our first child so we are nervously excited! We have a large Maison de Maitre and are surviving (almost) by renting the bulk of our house as a gite and living in a wing of the house which we have made into a makeshift apartment. Sorry for the waffle but thought I would introduce us:).

Anyway, I have registered as an Auto-Entrepreneur in early Summer and registered the business with the Chamber of Commerce which all seemed to go relatively smoothly considering my French is not up to much. I received my demands for cotisations which arrived in the form of four declarations, each one to be filled out for a separate month since I started trading. I noticed that the form has two levels of taxation for cotisations. The first ´vente de merchandises´ at 14% and the second ´presentations de services´at 24.60%. I had a French friend call RSI on my behalf and ask which I was due to pay and she was told that it was 24.6%. I completed and returned my declarations of earnings along with payment of 24.6% cotisations. Since then, I have read a few threads on the matter of taxations and a fellow gite owner said he is paying the 14.00% taxation for his gite business. Does anyone know the truth of this matter? Obviously don´t want to overpay my taxes!! I also heard something about lower tax if you are renting part of your main house and living accommodation as a gite. What is ACCRE? I have also received this CFE document which seems to have an exemption for Gites which are part of your actual home?

We have had some stressful nightmares with our medical cover as, obviously, Rossi has been to many scans and hospital appointments over the past few months and since we have not got a Carte Vitale yet, we received a Matriculation number and a Siret Number along with an attestation from RSI which seems to say we are both covered. However, every time I or Rossi has attended a doctor appointment or hospital we have to pay and return this brown form to RAM for reimbursement. RAM refused to pay saying that Rossi is not covered as they have not received her translated Birth Certificate, passport copy...actually we have sent these to RSI three times and they keep losing them so I have sent them recorded once again with a very stiff letter to RAM and copied to RSI. Since then, they have reimbursed one invoice so at least this is something...just waiting for the other 600 euros. Now we have heard from the hospital, who on checking Rossi´s portfolio that they received from RSI, say that RSI don´t even have Rossi down as being pregnant. Does anyone have any experience of giving birth in France as Rossi is getting very confused and stressed by this. I heard that maternity was covered 100% by RAM but do we have to pay up front and send the receipts for reimbursement? I have been told by RSI that I must wait up to 6 months for our Carte Vitales but that the Attestation would work the far as I know with a carte vitale you do not pay up front for treatment?

Also, anyone know about the actual income tax which I hear is charged annually for AEs? My earnings are very low this year as only started in July, plus a quarter of them have gone in cotisation taxes and reality is that living off limited savings mainly at the moment.

Is anyone still awake after reading this novel of questions? Sorry but with Rossi about to drop any day now we are worried about all of this.

Thanks for reading and any help would be much appreciated.

Best wishes, Ralph

I am so glad I could help. :-)

Hi Clare

I've just paid the fees on the AE website - you were correct, I needed to submit the figure in the vente de merchandise and this brought up the correct payment.

Thank you for all your help, very much appreciated.


It's funny you should say that my French optician agrees that the government are out of touch with taxation. He said ' they tax high earners 80%, lower earners more than enough, reward those who do not works and take nothing in the middle. He thinks Hollande should be sacked and they should bring back Sarkozy, although his strategies need a little work.' His words not mine but it did make me chuckle, even the French hate the system here.

Thanks for the link.

I do find it galling (or should I say Gaulling?) that they find new ways to hammer those on low incomes.

*Heads off to by a Euromillions ticket so he can move back to the UK or any other sensible country*

Hi Tim, this has always been the case. The only reason it was extended a further year this year was because Sylvie Pinel and her cronies couldn't get their act together to agree on the AE reforms. Hopefully everything will become a lot clearer soon when the results of all the consultations with the unions/lobby groups are published. I keep up with all the updates here. MAG 118 : pas de CFE %C3%A0 payer cette ann%C3%A9e !

It give you details of how these will probably be calculated for AEs

Interesting it seems CFE is now only exempted for two years (three if you count your first year) rather than four:

La cotisation foncière des entreprises (ex. taxe professionnelle)
Vous êtes exonéré de la cotisation foncière des entreprises l’année de création de votre
activité et les 2 années suivantes.


Ahh…sorry I understand now. Yes, I do all those things and will even polish their shoes if it means the lower tax rate lol:)

If you read a little further reply, this is so that private letting/landlords do not go in to this category, you need to look at the para hotelier bit. Do you meet and greet clients, do you provide linen, cleaning etc... if yes you are the presentation d'hebergement at the lower rate. If you just rent out the property out and do nothing yourself for the client, then it is the higher rate. I know it can be confusing!

So does this not mean that I should be in the 24.6% bracket as mine is furnished?

Great, thanks Clare:)

Not sure if any of you are aware there is a new official 2013 guide to AE here This is the most up to date version and also includes explanations on things like taxe fonciere des entreprises.

the tax answer appears on page 9

• 14 % pour une activité d’achat/revente, de vente à consommer sur place et de prestation
d’hébergement (BIC), à l’exception de la location de locaux d’habitation meublés dont
le taux est de 24,6 % ;

Provided you meet the para hotelier critera b&b & gites should be presentation d'henergement. The key here being locaux d’habitation meublés (of residential premises furnished) Hope this helps everyone.

Hi Ian we do have revenues from abroad, my husbands pension, but our comptable only deals with the annual return for this and tacks on on annual figure for the AE in one box on the form. He doesn't do our trimestral returns to RSI, which is what we were all referring to. Sorry if you misunderstood

Sorry my auto correct ‘auto-corrected’…It really doesn’t like French:)))) But yes, well spotted Ian

just to put it right (for those who may search - GOOGLE etc - for one.

The French word for Accountant is 'COMPTABLE' not 'compatibles' - not a serious error but could save time for non-French speakers.

unless you don't speak the language or have 'revenues' from abroad......

I agree Clare, it is straightforward once you know which rate to pay…heard a lot of rip off stories about compatibles so best to do it yourself.

Yes thanks Rachael:)

The only problem with comptables, is it was mine that gave the wrong info in the first instance, then tried to charge me €200 euros for it, that was before they did any tax return. They are great for the general/annual tax return but the AE is so simple that if you use a comptable just to do you quarterly returns its money down the drain.The whole thing about the AE is it is supposed to be simple.