French equivalent of "family allowance"

Does anyone know what a family with two children is entitled to in the way of family tax benefits in France. I have started work here now which means I no longer have the right to claim family allowance in England (which doesn't really exist anyway for us any more)

Husband continues to work in England and pays part of his tax in each country. He pays class 1 national insurance in England however so we have a carte vitale due to the European agreement.

Just wondered if the French equivalent is means tested.

Has anyone had experience of claiming this?

More importantly when I go to the tax office, I'd like to know the name of whatever I'm claiming for.
I know it will be long with lots of papers!!!

Thank you to everyone for your replies. They have been most helpful.

I have contacted the British government office for child benefit and arranged with them to send me a letter stating that I no longer receive my child allowance in England.

When that arrives, I am preparing myself for the mountain of paperwork and the hours of time spent at the CAF that I know await me!!

I am not intending to have "mon petit troisieme" no matter what tax benefits are possible!!!

To be continued......

You really need three kiddies in France Jodi. The third is worth a whole part for tax purposes and there are many other benefits.

We moved to France 6 months ago with my husband starting work immediately. I am at home looking after the youngest of two children (2 and 4). We applied for the Allocation Familiale soon after arriving (in the Aude department). Went to the local CAF office first. Took along all required documents. Since then all correspondence has been with the main office by post. Either is possible. The local office has been friendly and helpful. The requests for further documents have been manageable. Timescale: hubby started work in August, applied for CAD in September but everything went on hold until November because they need 3 months' payslips. In January I received first payment covering Nov - Jan. Now asking for more paperwork presumably to establish that we're still here and hubby still working. Received 'Allocation' number and online account in February. All pretty smooth and they even photocopied all my documents for me.

Hope that helps as a recent experience.


Jodi, to apply for the family benefit you go to the Caisse d'Allocations Familliale for your department, not the tax office (Hotel des Impots).

With regards to a 'tax' benefits, when you complete your tax declaration each year, you will declare 2 children in your family and along with your husband, be allocated 3 parts - ie OH is one, you are one and the children are half each. Child number 3 and any subsequent children are allocated a part each. What this means is that when you declare your household income, it is divided by 3 before they tax you, sounds complicated but it isn't really, the majority of families on an average income with 2 kids don't pay any tax at all - that's a big benefit.

yep so euro 127 but also if you are on lowish wage.... you would be entitled to money for la rentree each time... as that is means tested but the monthly benefit isnt.

Apparently its not means tested, I thought if you declared over a certain amount in "impots" you didn't get it, sorry

they are 11 and 13.

How times change. I had worked for Airbus Industrie for two years some years ago when I heard work colleagues discussing the increase in Allocation Familiale. I queried the subject and it was explained to me. The CAF wanted proof of when we arrived in France and all we had was my employment and our dog's ferry ticket. Both were accepted and we recieved two year's AF backdated from when we arrived.

I'm in the process of making a demand in the UK for Family Allowance. I have worked in France for about 8 or 9 years now and pay all my cotisations here, but I also still pay my basic stamp in the UK as I want to get up to my 35 years and not lose all those hard-earned years of pension contributions, for what they're worth! This time last year, I had two children aged 6 and 2.5 so got 300-odd Euros a month. Unfortunately, we lost our youngest last year, so now we get nothing. So I thought I'd take a chance by enquiring whether back 'home' in the UK I was eligible to anything as a) I still pay NI contributions and b) they pay even if you only have one child (what is that all about anyway France? Rather biased against one-child families, n'est-ce pas? I think that's their whole point - encouraging two kids or more) and c) there'll be no quandary about me getting it here AND there as I'm not getting it here any more. To be continued...

I also had many traumas with CAF but basically if you and the child live in France and are working in France, they have to pay. If hubby works in UK and you live in France but not working the UK has to pay it and then the French top it up. As Sam says, paperwork central, however after a year of nothing, I ended up with about a 1000GBP from the UK and 2000€ from the CAF as was also entitled to the ACTIPAJE - don't ask it was very complicated as previously I had always worked in France, never in the UK.

The basic Allocation famillial is from the second child only and currently 127€ a month, not means tested at the moment, for those with three children there is a fixed amount and a means tested amount - more complications, nothing is easy.

yes, 127€ a month, not means tested but big debate going on at the moment about making it so but I don't think they will ;-)

It is the Caisse d'allocation familliales CAF, it is about 127 euros a month for 2 kids, means tested, it took me 2 years to get it even though I work legally (and simply) in the French public health system. I had to get a letter to say that I no longer got child benefit in England, it took about 50 letters and a numerous trips to local office. They will want any paperwork you have had since you were born, and your husband and your kids! Good luck

how old are your children? I have 2 of 4 and 8 yrs and get just Euro127 I think a month.

You'd get more if you have 1 child under 3 yrs...