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Help !

I've been living in france for four years. At first I wasn't sure how long I was going to be here, but I worked managing social media for a company in Italy and wrote a few articles for magazines in the USA.

It's been a really slow timeline to get integrated. Not in terms of friends, but in terms of documents.

It took nearly a year to exchange my driving license. Another six months to figure out a bank account (finally I got compte nickel).

Since then I've been afraid to file taxes--I earn maybe ~1200eur a month, so not that much, but I"m still spooked by walking in and saying I haven't paid taxes in years !


But I need to so I can have a carte vitale and eventually citizenship !

Any advice much appreciated. What type of person should I speak to about this (some type of tax or immigration lawyer ?) ?

Thanks-
 

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I have to admit that I lived in France for around 20 years without filling in a tax declaration.
They certainly don't come running after you ...well, unless...

When various administrations started asking me for them,
(it started with the "bourse scolaire" for the children) I got a "unknown to the tax office" certificate
or "declaration sur l'honneur" that I had little or no revenues which was true at the time.
Finally when they insisted, I went to the tax office, filled in two years' back declarations and even got plenty of €€€ tax rebate.

You can do a simulation of how much tax you are liable - or not - to pay here:
https://www.impots.gouv.fr/portail/simulateurs.

Seems like your earnings are not from a salary in France.
If you can prove that tax has already been paid on your earnings in another country, you shouldn't have to pay tax twice.
It's the whole principal of the "conventions fiscales internationales" to avoid "double imposition".

Who to consult on the matter?
I would go to the see your local tax office. Maybe other posters on the forum could suggest an alternative?

From the moment you submit your (late) declaration, you'll have to wait at least 2 months until you get the precious "avis d'imposition".
Lots of French people "forget" to declare and burst into the tax office asking for their "avis".
They need it right away for benefits or whatever and can get very angry when it's refused.
 

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Filling in tax returns won't necessarily help you get a carte vitale, your eligibility for health care/social security depends on your status in France ie employee, self-employed, retiree, self-supporting inactif or whatever.

If you've been living and working in France but haven't been paying your social security dues here and don't have any portable health documents from another EU state to exempt you from the obligation of doing so, you'll have to think quite carefully about which box you enter your earned income in and how you explain it.

As Poloss says, the tax office is the best place to get advice, they're generally surprisingly non judgmental and sympathetic and helpful. You don't need to pay a tax consultant or an immigration lawyer to explain the rules to you. Alternatively the rules are all accessible online for free. Wherever you get your advice from, your options on how to regularise yourself will be the same.
 

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Filling in tax returns won't necessarily help you get a carte vitale, your eligibility for health care/social security depends on your status in France ie employee, self-employed, retiree, self-supporting inactif or whatever.
I am assuming that the OP knows all this and that the Sécu is asking him, as for all primo demanders, French or other, his avis d'imposition among the host of documents necessary to examine his rights.
 

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I am assuming that the OP knows all this and that the Sécu is asking him, as for all primo demanders, French or other, his avis d'imposition among the host of documents necessary to examine his rights.
You're probably right, but my point was that he'll need to regularise his status first. Living in working in France but "unknown to URSSAF", is not a status that will go down well with the sécu, even if the tax office are happy to process his tax returns and he has his avis.
 

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And after Mayhem has finished her "brilliant" negotiations with the EU the OP may well find himself in a very precarious position so he needs to get sorted asap IMO
 

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You're good on tax matters Crabtree - if the OP declares these four years' earnings to the fisc as overseas income, am I right in thinking that that would result in a largeish bill for social charges plus a small amount of income tax?

I'm wondering whether realistically he'd do better to draw a line under the last four years, since I don't see how they will ever count towards legal residence in France whatever he does about it retrospectively; and if he wants to stay here then start afresh, get himself registered as self employed if that's the basis he earns his income on, and start doing things by the book as of now. But, leaving a four year gap in your tax records when you didn't submit a tax return anywhere at all might come back and bite you in the bum at some point in the future mightn't it, so I don't know what I'd do in that situation.
 

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The OP hasn't come back on this. If the OP is living in France under the radar, perhaps the best thing is to return to the UK, subsequently return and start all over again adhering to the normal requirements re tax. Frankly, I think that a Brit who is in this situation should at the very least apply for a carte de sejour and ensure that they do everything above board, especially with Brexit (in some form or other) looming.

4 years to get key matters in place is not a long integration IMO, but rather avoiding some of the most important stuff and arguably abusing EU free movement.
 

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The OP hasn't come back on this. If the OP is living in France under the radar, perhaps the best thing is to return to the UK, subsequently return and start all over again adhering to the normal requirements re tax. Frankly, I think that a Brit who is in this situation should at the very least apply for a carte de sejour and ensure that they do everything above board, especially with Brexit (in some form or other) looming.
Yep - and I see he first asked what he should do way back in 2013. Seems he can't have liked the responses then either, or at least not enough to take the advice offered...
 

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Frankly, I think that a Brit who is in this situation should at the very least apply for a carte de sejour and ensure that they do everything above board, especially with Brexit (in some form or other) looming.
.
The one thing that a UK Citizen in France does not need yet is a Carte de Séjour. Completing a tax return would have been much less hassle than the paper chase required to get an unnecessary bit of paper.
 

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The one thing that a UK Citizen in France does not need yet is a Carte de Séjour. Completing a tax return would have been much less hassle than the paper chase required to get an unnecessary bit of paper.
There are Brits on this forum whose demand for CAF benefits has been blocked pending obtention of à titre de sejour.
 

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The one thing that a UK Citizen in France does not need yet is a Carte de Séjour. Completing a tax return would have been much less hassle than the paper chase required to get an unnecessary bit of paper.
"Yet" being the operative word - IMHO better safe than sorry. In any case, a CDS is useful should the French authorities take the view that the OP's status is 'irregulier' (something that does crop up from time to time and can cause all sorts of headaches).

I agree that it would have been easier to submit tax declarations from the start, or at the very least to have a discussion with the French tax people.

Oh, and any residence that is considered 'irregulier' is unlikely to be taken into account for the purposes of naturalisation.
 

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Just a note here - lately it seems that, for purposes of naturalization, the requirement that one be "integrated" or "assimilated" tends to mean that one can show that one has been paying their cotisations and filing tax declarations during the period in question.

The carte de séjour is an option, but again, you'd have to show that your stay in France has been "regular" in the French sense - which means health cover and source of income of some sort (preferably subject to all the usual cotisations and taxes).

If you're looking to establish your "legitimate residency" best do it now, before all the Brexit complications come into play.
Cheers,
Bev
 

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"Yet" being the operative word - IMHO better safe than sorry. In any case, a CDS is useful should the French authorities take the view that the OP's status is 'irregulier' (something that does crop up from time to time and can cause all sorts of headaches).

I agree that it would have been easier to submit tax declarations from the start, or at the very least to have a discussion with the French tax people.

Oh, and any residence that is considered 'irregulier' is unlikely to be taken into account for the purposes of naturalisation.
But is it better safe than sorry? Any British Citizen applying for a CdS now will get one for an EU Citizen, after Brexit it will be worthless.
 

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It's true that a cds is not necessary at present (though in the no deal scenario that might change), but what is important is whether you meet the criteria for getting one. These criteria are pretty clear and organisations such as CAF and CPAM who need to confirm your entitlement before they accept you, will study your dossier and make their own decision whether or not you meet them. Reading between the lines, when CAF demands an EU citizen produces a carte de séjour it's usually because in their assessment that person does not meet the criteria. I guess if that person then comes back with a cds they'll change their mind. But if CAF don't think you meet the criteria then unless they've overlooked something, the prefecture won't think you do either and you won't get one.
I suppose the advantage is that if you have a valid cds, CAF and the rest won't need to make their own assessment, you just flash your cds when you apply and your entitlement won't be questioned.
 

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Personally if the OP wants to stay in France and get a CV etc then I would throw myself on the mercy of the fisc and pay up then keep my head well below the parapet and do everything correctly
 

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On another british ex-pat forum, brits are being refused a CdS at the Tours prefecture. Alledgedly, dept 37 Indre et loire has decided not to issue them, no exceptions. Those refused are taking it up with the british consulate in Paris.

I'm a naturalized brit and know I can stay here as an inactiv through EU regs. I have done everything required and plan to pay taxes being my first yr here. Frankly; I don't see what a CdS is going to do to make me more 'stayable' after brexsh§t; and, I'd rather not waste the prefecture's time with something that they probably see as redundant anyway.

And; if France wants to throw me out b/c I didn't get a CdS but did everything else by the book then it's probably time to find a new place anyway.
 

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I don't see what a CdS is going to do to make me more 'stayable' after brexsh§t
On the latest position paper, the EU's position is that being in possession a CdS, or not, will make no difference to your rights. Although this hasn't been bilaterally agreed because the UK wants paperwork. In any case if there is no deal, I don't know if the EU position will be maintained, I guess not.
https://ec.europa.eu/commission/sites/beta-political/files/table_-_citizens_rights.pdf

EU position:
"Citizens shall be considered
legally resident even if they
do not hold a residence
document evidencing that
right."

UK position:
"Holders of Permanent
Residence certificates need
to reapply; UK ready to offer
more streamlined
administrative procedure. UK
seeks clarification on how UK
citizens in the EU will be
identified as covered by the
WA as a matter of practice."
 

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I suspect the concern over having a CdS is that, should it come down to having to show that you've been resident for some period of time, it would be easier to flash your CdS than to dig up the invoices or other documents to prove residence now and in the past. More a convenience than a necessity.
Cheers,
Bev
 

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I suspect the concern over having a CdS is that, should it come down to having to show that you've been resident for some period of time, it would be easier to flash your CdS than to dig up the invoices or other documents to prove residence now and in the past. More a convenience than a necessity.
Cheers,
Bev
Yes exactly, the only reason I can see is that you decide going through the process once at the préfecture will be less hassle than jumping through hoops for each separate branch of the administration that you deal with. But, I've never had any problems with CAF etc, in fact I've found them very convenient to deal with because you can provide everything they ask for electronically online. So to me, having to photocopy everything in duplicate or triplicate or whatever, and take it all physically to the préfecture, seems like one large unnecessary extra hassle and a waste of time. No doubt I would see it differently if my experience had been different and things hadn't gone so smoothly, and if something happens to make me lose my faith in these organisations I'll be there with my application :cool:
 
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