2015-16 French tax returns- the Tax Office has released the filing dates.

The Tax Office has just release the filing deadlines for the income tax returns for the tax year 2015 (Déclaration des Revenus), as follows. For further details on our services for the preparation and filing of the returns, please visit our website .

The online filing service will open on 13th April. The online filing deadlines are a little tighter this year and are as follows:

Non-residents:   7th June 2016

Residents

Départments 01-19:  24th May 2016

Départments 20-49:  31st May 2016

Départments 50-974: 7th June 2016

The filing deadline for the manual returns for residents and non-residents is 18th May 2016, which as in previous years does not allow much time for preparation, given that the forms are not released until late April/ early May!  We would therefore urge all new clients who are filing their first tax return in France, and therefore need to file manually, to contact us as soon as possible so we can schedule the preparation of your returns in time.

For further information and assistance, please visit our website.

2015-16 French tax return release dates- update

Here´s an update direct from the French goevernment public information website https://www.service-public.fr/particuliers/vosdroits/F359 :

The online filing system will open “during April”, without being specific on the exact date.

The manual returns will be released at the end of April / beginning of May. This is particularly inconvenient for non-resident owners of French property declaring for the first time, for whom the filing deadline is 19th May ! It doesn´t give them much time at all. The good news is that, at least up until now, there have been no penalties payable for returns filed a little late.

Please visit our website for further information and assistance.

French tax- the forms explained

Here´s a brief overview of the various tax forms in France. For further information and assistance with the preparation and filing of French tax returns, please visit our website.

If you are non-resident, with a property in France from which you receive rental income, you are obliged to submit annual French tax returns, regardless of whether you make a profit or loss on the rentals.

For non-furnished rentals, the forms to returns to submit are 2042 and 2044. In form 2044 you can claim quite a large range of your expenditure on your property. Some expenditure such as utilities bills and advertising may not be included- it is assumed that non-furnished rentals are long term therefore such expenditure is not relevant.

For furnished rentals, if you have a high level of expenditure in relation to your rental income, then it is best for you to register your rental activity formally for tax purposes. Under this formal regime, you will either file Forms 2031 and 2033 annually or chose the simplified tax payment format where you pay a fixed percentage of tax and Social Security during the year. I will cover this in further detail in future articles.

If your expenditure is less than 50% of the income that you receive, you can elect to declare under the Micro-BIC regime, which does not require formal tax registration of your rental activity. This requires the simple filing of an additional Form, 2042C, in which you only need to state your gross annual rental income. The standard deduction is 50%, or if you register locally as furnished rental accommodation (Meublé de Tourisme) then you can claim a deduction of 71%.

As I noted above, if you have registered your property rental activity formally then you will need to submit Forms 2031 and 2033. If this is through a French property holding company, SCI, then the additional return to complete is Form 2072. If it is through a non-French company then you should use Form 2065. Note that the Tax Office has introduced obligatory online filing and, in general, 2016 was the last year when the forms can be filed manually before penalties were introduced for non-compliance.

If you are resident in France, the general form to file is 2042.  If you have received income from any sources outside France, you should also file Form 2047.  In addition, there is an obligatory disclosure for bank accounts outside France in Form 3916.

If you live in France but work in Switzerland, i.e. a frontalier worker then there is an additional Form, 2047 Suisse, which is used to calculate where and how your income should be disclosed in the main tax return.

For further information and assistance with the preparation and filing of French tax returns, please visit our website.