Do you pay to URSSAF and why?

Hello. Pretty cold out there eh? Time to sit round the fire and ponder on tax issues.

I am an early retiree and have been living in France almost 9 years. My income comes from a private pension (in the UK) and some bank interest, share dividends, etc.

Each year I complete a French tax self assessment form and then provide my Tax Reference to CPAM.

I pay: Tax on my income : Annual Social charge : Tax Fonciere : and Tax Habitation

In addition CPAM pass my information to URSSAF who then send me a quarterly bill.

We must know at least 50 other British couples living in France plus some Dutch and Germans. Apart from one other couple (who have similar circumstances to us), we know not a single other person who has even heard of URSSAF let alone sent them any money. Even more, the half a dozen French people we know well enough to discuss this matter with also have no idea why we are paying to URSSAF.

Of course, we have approached URSSAF and have even had a French friend approach them on our behalf, and the unfriendly attitude is - if we send you a bill, you pay it !

So, my question to all you experts out there, is : Does anyone else pay this kind of bill to URSSAF and why? What is it for?

Looking at the URSSAF website it would appear to relate to businesses in France - which I don't have (yet).

A taxing question eh?

Finn is another sfn member who is very knowledgeable on French and EU law and admin. I agree that the URSSAF, as I understand it, is there for taking contributions from working people, not retired, but I'll leave someone with more expert knowledge to answer that one and perhaps there's something specific about your case. I've always found them helpful and have had to point out their mistakes on many occasions to them, done the right way they usually concede, I had huge problems, like most, at the start of the autoentrepreneur system as they simply didn't know anything about it and got pretty much everything wrong, things are fine now but it took them a couple of years to understand the system. perhaps it's just a misunderstanding on their part - what are you actually paying for anyway, health cover, retirement...? I imagine, being France, that if you're under the official retirement age and have sufficient income then they'll demand that you pay for health cover etc and it could be that...?

Thanks Andrew.

The URSSAF website clearly gives the impression that they deal with people in business. That makes this whole thing very odd and, very expensive.

Who, may I ask, is Finn?



I pay URSSAF but only because I'm an autoentrpreneur/work. Sounds rather odd but could be due to you net yet being official retirement age here (if that's the case) - you need Finn on this one!

Maybe I can shed light on this from my experience.

If you are inactive ie of working age yet early retired then you cannot receive membership to Carte Vital until you could get the relevant form from the UK government to set the wheels into motion for the French to bill the UK for your health. Therefore they will bill you.

It happened to me. I was receiving horrendous bills from URRSAF until I could find out why. Once I found out, I was able to get the form from the UK stating when I became sixty, and then after six months my money was returned from URRSAF.

They do work with businesses but also act as a collection agency for CPAM.