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Nathan Clarke


Dear Patricia,

I’m a freelance photographer in the UK (8 yrs as a sole trader). I’m moving to France with my French partner and wish to continue to freelance. I’ve heard of ‘Micro entrepreneur’ & ‘Portage salarial’ but I’m not sure which is best for me (or if there is another better option).

The key factors are:-

1) I have ongoing expenses (eg. cost of camera repairs, expensive camera equipment,….). so must be able to claim for these ( is this a problem as a micro entrepreneur?)

2) My income fluctuates each month dependent on contracts (is this another problem with micro entrepreneur?)

4) I plan to live and work in France, but I might return to the UK for the occasional big shoots (large commission of multiple days, which would make it financially viable, after deducting travel time and cost to get to the UK and back to France).

5) I Would consider part time work in France teaching English to boost my income.

6) My Salary might sometimes go over the €32,900 threshold for micro entrepreneur but I don’t know the implications of this.

7) I will not have full French citizenship when I first move to France, but I intend to get that in the future.

If you can advise me what would be the best business set up option that would be great.

Many Thanks,

by Nathan Clarke on 01 Feb 2017
Patricia Moerland

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Dear Nathan,

1) If you are a EU citizen or from Island, Norway, Liechtenstein or Switzerland, you are allowed to startup in France without any other formality. Otherwise, you will first have to ask for a resident permit in France, I already answered to that question in another post. Have a check.

2) As a micro entrepreneur, you do not claim for VAT return. This may be very inconvenient if you have continuous heavy material expenses.

3) As a micro entrepreneur, income fluctuation is less problematic than with another status as your social taxes are related to your income.

4) Moving from a country to another should not be a problem as long as your main income taxes address clearly remains in France.

5) You can work while being a micro entrepreneur as long as you are not in competition with your employer. Be loyal and tell your employer about your second activity.

6) Above 33 100 € threshold, there is a period of tolerance between 33 100 € and 35 100 €, above, you will automatically become "entreprise individuelle". I advise you to check this properly with the Chamber of commerce.

Best regards,
Patricia Moerland

by Patricia Moerland on 10 Feb 2017

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