Monthly Archives: February 2016

The Empire Strikes Back- Social Charges to be reintroduced for non-residents !

 

This is not going to be welcome news for non-resident owners of French property who have rental income, or more specifically those who make a profit.  Social Charges,  which are known as Contributions Sociales or Prélèvements Sociaux, are to be reintroduced for the tax year 2015 onwards.

Social Charges, which currently amount to 15,5% of taxable income, were introduced for rental income by non-residents from the tax year 2012 onwards. After a ruling by the European Court of Justice in February 2015 that these charges were illegal because they were Social Security contributions applied to people who would be gaining no benefit from the French Social Security system, the French goverment was  passed a law in July 2015 withdrawing these charges for non-residents and accepting applications for the amounts paid for the years 2012 and 2013 to be refunded.

However, in the Finance Law passed on 1st January 2016, Social Charges are being introduced, supposedly “in agreement with the European Commission” . The French government is claiming that this is legal because the contributions will go towards the general government budget and not specifically towards Social Security. Here is an excerpt from some recent communication that we have had from the Tax Office:

“A noter que l’application des prélèvements sociaux sur les revenus 2015 pour les non résidents est reconduite. Conformément à la loi de finance du 01/01/2016 et en accord avec la commission européenne, l’application des prélèvements sociaux est maintenue pour les non résidents mais financera le budget global de l’État et non la sécurité sociale. “

Whether this will be challenged again in the European Court of Justice waits to be seen, but whatever happens it will be a long process. In the meantime, those renting out their property in France will be faced again with a total tax payable of 35.5% of any profits they make.

Not happy reading.

 

 

2016 income tax rates in France and preparing for the 2015 tax returns

The French tax rates for the year 2016 have now been published. As far as the calculation of income tax  goes, There are no major changes, with tax bands and allowances increased by a small amount.

You can find the up-to-date tax rates and allowances on our website at http://www.franceaccountants.com/tax.html .

In April the Tax Office system will open for the online filing of the 2015 income tax returns (Declaration des Revenus). They have not yet released the exact dates of commencement and deadlines. We are working on the basis that these will be the same as last year and re-published these on our website at http://www.franceaccountants.com/2016frenchtax.html . We will update this when the exact dates are published by March.

For further information and assistance with your French tax returns, please visit our website www.franceaccountants.com .