FRANCE

VAT Registration in France

In France this delivery threshold is 35,000 EUR. Accordingly, sellers from other EU countries have to register in France if they sell goods worth more than 35,000 EUR to France within a calendar year. As a business established outside France, the VAT registration application must be completed and send to Tax Office in France.

Required documents

  • Registration requires completing Form IMP (EU persons) or Form M0 (non­ EU persons) and the form’s appendix describing the activity to be performed in France.
  • Articles of association.
  • A copy of the Identity card or passport of the business owner or Shareholders.
  • VAT number in EU member state.
  • incorporation certificate

Businesses established outside of the EU must include with their applications the “proxy” appointing the fiscal representative.

It generally takes four to six weeks to obtain a VAT number.

SIREN number

A SIREN number is your unique French business identification number. This 9 digit number will be requested by all French administration when dealing with you, e.g. URSSAF, RSI, Impot, etc. It is proof that you are a fully registered French business, listed on the national business directory – répertoire national des entreprises. Your SIREN number will be issued by INSEE (national institute of statistics), when you register your business.

SIRET number

Your SIRET number will be issued once you have registered your business with the Chambre de Commerce (RCS) for trade, Chambre de Metiers for crafts and manual work or with URSSAF for intellectual services such as translator or website designer. You will receive an Extrait KBIS usually within two weeks of your registration with your SIRET number. For auto entrepreneurs, your SIRET number will be on the official letter sent to you by INSEE. So what is the difference between a SIREN number and a SIRET number? A SIRET is a 14 digit number referring to your business location (SIREN + 5 digits).

Example of SIRET number

Your unique SIRET number should look like this if you are a limited company or are in a trading activity (commercant) – RCS PARIS 453 983 245. RCS stands for Registre du Commerce et des Societes, i.e. registration via the Chambre du Commerce et de l’Industrie. For crafts and manual activities (artisans) registering with Chambre de Metiers, your SIRET number will look like this – RC NANTES 234 987 456.

VAT returns

France VAT return period depends on the taxable person’s turnover. In France, the periodicity of VAT (locally called Taxe sur la valeur ajoutée (TVA)) is as follows:

Monthly VAT returns in France are due Set by admin between 15th and 24th of following month.

Quarterly VAT returns in France are due Set by admin between 15th and 24th of month following quarter, always that Simplified regime or no return, depending on turnover and output VAT due in the previous year (< 4000 EUR)

Companies following the normal regime (régime réel normal) file returns monthly. There are two categories of taxpayer that must follow the normal regime:

  • Companies whose turnover exceeds EUR 788,000 (goods) or EUR 238,000 (services)
  • Companies whose output VAT due exceeded EUR 15,000 the preceding year
  • Companies following the simplified regime (régime réel sim- plifié) file returns quarterly and annually. These are two catego­ries of companies that can follow the simplified regime:
  • Companies whose turnover is between EUR82,800 and EUR788,000 (goods) or between EUR33,100 and EUR238,000 (services), and whose output VAT due the previous year was less than EUR15,000
  • Companies whose turnover exceeds EUR788,000 (goods) or EUR238,000 (services) but whose total output VAT due dur­ing the previous calendar year did not exceed EUR4,000
  • Companies that are not required to file a VAT return are those whose turnover is less than EUR82,800 (goods) or EUR33,100 (services).

VAT payment

For French and non-EU companies, monthly VAT returns and payment are due between the 15th and the 24th day of the month following the end of the return period. The due date depends on several factors including the type of legal entity involved and where the taxable person is established. For EU entities, monthly or quarterly VAT returns are due on the 19th day of the month following the end of the return period.

Deregistration

When ending economic activities, a company has to file a specific form (M4 for non-EU businesses/“declaration de cessation” for EU businesses) within 30 days (extended to 60 days under certain circumstances) following the date of the end of activity. This form must list the transactions performed by the company during this period and the ending date of the activity. Usually, the company will not be allowed to deduct the input VAT due on costs incurred after the date of the end of activity.