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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
How is everyone doing?

Well, I got into France on the 4th, mailed my OFII letter on the 11th and just received my letter from the OFII stating that they have received. Now I wait for an appointment! I received that letter fast, so I'm wondering if they will try to get me in there before vacation time in France! :p

I do have a bit of a question. I decided to possibly take a little part time job as a tutor/nanny for a family that lives in my neighborhood. Just something to do and for pocket money for my first year until I learn enough French. (I'm studying French everyday and thankfully my husband's patience has expanded considerably and now I practice with him every night just talking about my day, what I cooked, etc.)

Anyways, the family is of course declaring the job. Therefore, am I going to have to need a French social security number? Going through CPAM? Does anyone know anything about this and how it works. I am worried that I will have issues since my visa hasn't got the vignette from the OFII yet...but I was hoping that given the circumstances -since I'm married to a French citizen and will obviously be here for awhile- that I wouldn't have any issues.

Any help on this would be great! Thanks!
 

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Don't worry about it. Go in and talk to CPAM to ask them what you need to do. The process of getting a sécu number takes a while (though they can issue you a temporary number for the interim).

This is the page from Service Public: Immatriculation à la Sécurité sociale : premier emploi - Service-public.fr (Good practice for your French - and hubby can help you, too.) There is a section there for someone getting a sécu number based on their first employment. Don't offer up too much information - just give them what they ask you for - and take it one step at a time.

Like you say, it's likely the OFII will try to get you through the process before everyone takes off for the summer holidays, so it's just a matter of getting through the process.
Cheers,
Bev
 

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Do you mean the Cesu system of paying employees? If so, once the employee and employer are registered (most of it on line) the process works very easily and smoothly.

I've paid a number of femmes de mènage and odd job boys over the years and it is so easy. I pay by cash, cheque or virement as the employee wants - I don's use the CESU cheques at all.

DejW
 

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But don't you need the employee's sécu number to make the payments? It's getting that first sécu number that can be tricky for a foreigner.
Cheers,
Bev
 

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Yes, you do need the sécu number as an employer. I was assuming that the op would get a temp number.


DejW

But don't you need the employee's sécu number to make the payments? It's getting that first sécu number that can be tricky for a foreigner.
Cheers,
Bev
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
But don't you need the employee's sécu number to make the payments? It's getting that first sécu number that can be tricky for a foreigner.
Cheers,
Bev
This is what I'm wondering since I know it's difficult to do at times. Since the job is declared I'm assuming that I'll need a french social security number. I'm wondering if I'll have to present a working contract from the family to show proof that I need one... Or maybe just go through one of those little agencies for something part time. One of my friends here does that... But she is french... I'm assuming I'll need yet another birth certificate with a translation... Bah !
 

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Do you mean the Cesu system of paying employees? If so, once the employee and employer are registered (most of it on line) the process works very easily and smoothly.

I've paid a number of femmes de mènage and odd job boys over the years and it is so easy. I pay by cash, cheque or virement as the employee wants - I don's use the CESU cheques at all.

DejW
What is CESU and CPAM please and what is the 'CESU system of paying employees'? Do you have to be a company? - DejW I assume you are not a company? How do you pay employees and declare the tax in this instance please? I need to start hiring employees and my head is going to explode. They are on either a casual or part-time contract and the work is to assist me thus in the same category as what you've discussed it seems. I don't want to open a business here, I just want to pay them legally without going broke in the meantime.

Sorry for the thread hijack.
 

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THe Cesu system is part of the French employment scene. For me, it means I can employ somebody with a sécu number and all is legal. I declare the employee once, and then each month I declare how much I have paid them (net) and how many hours. The Cesu then sends a pay slip to the employee with the net salary grossed up for all the employee social security payments. About a month later my account is debited with the employer's SS payments. For me it means that I have insurance against workplace accidents, and the employee is entitled to sick pay and a pension. Tax does not enter into the process - that's done like everyone else in May the next year.

Happy to clarify, or for others to correct me. I think the scheme is bigger than this, but that's how I use it.

DejW

What is CESU and CPAM please and what is the 'CESU system of paying employees'? Do you have to be a company? - DejW I assume you are not a company? How do you pay employees and declare the tax in this instance please? I need to start hiring employees and my head is going to explode. They are on either a casual or part-time contract and the work is to assist me thus in the same category as what you've discussed it seems. I don't want to open a business here, I just want to pay them legally without going broke in the meantime.

Sorry for the thread hijack.
 

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Basically, the CESU thing is a means whereby an individual can hire people for certain types of "personal service" work without having to go through an established company or business entity. It's a sort of one-on-one employment - but the system relies on the employer obtaining the sécu (social security) number of the person they are employing.

The actual system of payment assures that the employer pays not only the employee's wages, but at the same time, the appropriate employer portion of the cotisations (roughly what is called "payroll taxes" in the US).

The advantage for the employee is that they can work for a number of different employers (as in the example of someone who does housecleaning for a number of clients) yet have their wages reported all in one place, with the social insurances paid up by the individual employers, yet reported in total through one government agency.

CPAM is Améli (the online website for the health insurance through the national system) and basically the consumer contact version of French Social Security (Sécu) when it comes to health insurance. There are other agencies that handle the retirement system, unemployment, and the other benefit systems.
Cheers,
Bev
 

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Thanks so much DejW and Bev - that info has helped a great deal. I have a couple more questions please:

1. Is the workplace accident insurance automatically applied once a social security number is give and a work contract agreed upon? Or do I have to pay and apply for it to be established separately? The workplace insurance was definitely one of biggest worries as it's so important.

2. Is there a social security calculator online or is there a standard percent withdrawn per each Euro paid (so I can calculate anticipated amount withdrawn each month)?

3. In Australia my employees have tax taken out of their pay each fortnight (by my accountant/pay roll person). In France I think this is not the case yes? DejW, you said you report the net earnings of your employees - who calculates the difference between the gross and tax amounts? You?

4. What other employee entitlements are I responsible for here - sick pay, pensions, anything else ...?

Thank you for helping me with this. I'll do some further reading today.
 

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Thanks so much DejW and Bev - that info has helped a great deal. I have a couple more questions please:

1. Is the workplace accident insurance automatically applied once a social security number is give and a work contract agreed upon? Or do I have to pay and apply for it to be established separately? The workplace insurance was definitely one of biggest worries as it's so important.

DejW.....not sure, I don't have a formal written contract with the cleaning ladies that I've used. I asseume (but haven't checked that the industrial accident insurance is in place once the employee is registered with me as employer. This takes 5 mins on line.

2. Is there a social security calculator online or is there a standard percent withdrawn per each Euro paid (so I can calculate anticipated amount withdrawn each month)?

Dejw...when you declare the end of month hours and pay they give you an estimate it's about 30 - 40% of net pay (wot I paid the employee)

3. In Australia my employees have tax taken out of their pay each fortnight (by my accountant/pay roll person). In France I think this is not the case yes? DejW, you said you report the net earnings of your employees - who calculates the difference between the gross and tax amounts? You?

DejW.....no tax does not enter into the Cesu system. There is no "current year" deduction of income tax in France - it's all worked out the following year and then paid in lump sum(s) later in the year.
4. What other employee entitlements are I responsible for here - sick pay, pensions, anything else ...?

No nothing....that the beauty of the CESU system. Sickpay, holidays, pensions etc are managed between the Cesu and the employee. The only major problem is how to end the employment - long winded admin process ...can be speeded up with € notes in sticky hands! Beware that employees seem to expect a "13 month" of pay as a bonus. I've got more sense than to upset a femme de mènage!

Thank you for helping me with this. I'll do some further reading today.

DejW
 

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CESU actually has a calculator online you can use: Bienvenue sur le site du Chèque emploi service universel

In fact, you may want to have a good look-see of the CESU site overall, as there are a few different options. Bienvenue sur le site du Chèque emploi service universel

Back a few years ago, right after my mother-in-law died, I was helping my husband go through her personal affairs and the issue arose of whether or not she had paid the housekeeper for the month in which she died.

At the time, my m-i-l had a packet of the forms she used to pay the housekeeper. A lovely, simple system whereby she indicated the basic pay (i.e. X€ per hour times y hours worked - though at the time it was still in FFr), then ran down the list, calculating how much needed to be subtracted from the base amount for "withholdings" to determine the amount of the check she needed to write to the housekeeper.

At the bottom of the form, there was a flat percentage she calculated to indicate how much to add to the withholdings for the employer's share of the payroll taxes. One copy went to the housekeeper, my m-i-l kept one copy and (I think) she would write a check to URSSAF once a quarter or so to pay up her share of the cotisations. I'm sure the system has changed by now - but it's generally pretty simple and direct to follow. And now, apparently, can be handled online or in a number of different ways.
Cheers,
Bev
 

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I have a running XLS spreadsheet that shows the rate, hours and payment for each month. I give the FdM a copy (more lines each month). I also spend 5 mins doing the CESU declaration and the bank transfer to her bank account.....all very simple. Both the FDM and I get all the relevant year end paperwork from the Cesu, for me it's all online.

Just to complicate the non Cesu aspect, our FDM asked be if we could "level" her earnings through the year. So, we operate a "bank" of hours that she draws down during her vacations and before Christmas. I document it all, but it does require two way trust....and we have that here.
DejW
 

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Thank you both again for your detailed responses. The information has lifted such a lot of worries from me. I am a spreadsheet wiz and love online and iPad anything and already keep the Australian employees roster, hours, pays etc on them so I feel I'm ahead of the game there.

Again, thank you both very, very much. I was floundering in darkness of no direction and now I actually see a foothold (or at least a ramp) leading to the light:) Not exactly everyone's idea of a fun way to spend a sunny Sunday but I'm excited!
 

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Up to you. People are used to the CESU checks for things like house cleaning, tutoring (I think) and general child care. If you go with the CESU checks, you have no need for an AE because it's the employers who report and pay your cotisations.

If you're doing something not covered by CESU and want to handle your own cotisations, then you need to set up an AE. You report your turnover gross (with no deductions for anything) and pay cotisations - and ultimately income tax - on that.
Cheers,
Bev
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Up to you. People are used to the CESU checks for things like house cleaning, tutoring (I think) and general child care. If you go with the CESU checks, you have no need for an AE because it's the employers who report and pay your cotisations.

If you're doing something not covered by CESU and want to handle your own cotisations, then you need to set up an AE. You report your turnover gross (with no deductions for anything) and pay cotisations - and ultimately income tax - on that.
Cheers,
Bev
And I'm assume I'll meet tax hell with an AE? the family are a bit unsure also. I would only be working 10 hours a week and they were talking about paying into my social taxes... But for income tax... I'm not even sure if I would make enough to be pay anything at the end of the year. But since my husband and I will be filling jointly from March on... I'm not for sure what I'm looking at.

I did meet with an American expat who lives near me and she has been here for a long, long time. Bless her heart for sitting down with me and spelling everything out with taxes in France and the US. I was a bit confused with it at first and my husband had a hard time explaining it to me.
This lady has offered to go with me to my CPAM in Nogent sur Marne and speaking with me so I don't look like a confused puppy dog. She said that hopefully all they will ask for is my Passport, livret de famille, and fiche d'état civil (which I can get at the mairie) instead of requesting another birth certificate.

I mean, couldn't the family use CESU and leave my secu blank and it would kick start the process for me to get the number... Or am I dreaming here?
 

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I'm not sure what would happen with you relying on the family to kickstart your sécu number process. When it comes to a regular employer, there is a form that they have to file when they take on a new employee - and yes, if the new employee doesn't have a sécu number, it's supposed to start up the process.

But part of the thing with the CESU is that this is a simplification for the person employing someone for personal services. (Trust me, the reporting for a business employer is a bit complicated at first.)

There's no real tax hell with the AE, though. It changes how you pay your cotisations a bit (and makes you responsible for doing so). But at the end of the year, you report your earnings pretty much the same way on your tax declaration. If you are going the AE route, then you have to file another form to report your AE earnings against your SIRET (business registration number). Otherwise, I think your CESU earnings are counted as regular "salary" - and may even come pre-printed on your tax forms (at least after the first year you file here).
Cheers,
Bev
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
I'm not sure what would happen with you relying on the family to kickstart your sécu number process. When it comes to a regular employer, there is a form that they have to file when they take on a new employee - and yes, if the new employee doesn't have a sécu number, it's supposed to start up the process.

But part of the thing with the CESU is that this is a simplification for the person employing someone for personal services. (Trust me, the reporting for a business employer is a bit complicated at first.)

There's no real tax hell with the AE, though. It changes how you pay your cotisations a bit (and makes you responsible for doing so). But at the end of the year, you report your earnings pretty much the same way on your tax declaration. If you are going the AE route, then you have to file another form to report your AE earnings against your SIRET (business registration number). Otherwise, I think your CESU earnings are counted as regular "salary" - and may even come pre-printed on your tax forms (at least after the first year you file here).
Cheers,
Bev
Okay, I'm really starting to get befuddled now. People are talking about URSSAF and CAF and something called La paje... Does any of this make sense to you. I know URSSAF but CAF and la paje?

What is the difference between CESU and CAF? Which one is easier?
 

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Ah, welcome to the wonderful world of the expat. One of the first "culture shocks" is trying to come to grips with all the acronyms and names for the various offices you'll have to deal with.

URSSAF is social security here. "La paye" or "la paie" is just the French term for "payroll" - like if you get a software program to handle "la paie" for your business. In the US it's a payroll program. Here it's "la paie."

CPAM is the office here that handles health care benefits specifically. (URSSAF also deals with other benefits, though not with retirement.)

CAF is the Caisse Allocation Familialle, which is another of the benefits URSSAF collects the cotisations for. Generally you only have to see them if you're applying for one of their benefits.

CESU is Cheque emploi service universel - and like CPAM is part of URSSAF - only this one deals with working with individuals who want to emploi other individuals for personal service things without having to set up a business entity to do so. (But mainly to make sure that the individual employers pay the cotisations for their employees.)
Cheers,
Bev
 
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