How to become a Freelancer In France
Have ever had the desire to move to France? or already in France and want to stay but don’t speak the language and need to work?
Why not become a freelancer in France!
So if you ever thought that you might want to move to France or stay I’m going to be give you a short overview about the things that you would need to do to make that happen.
If you want to become a freelancer in France, the first thing that you’ll have to do is to get the proper visa. Now, if you are a European national, you do not need any kind of special visa or permission. You can declare your business just as easily as a French person. But if you are coming outside of the EU, you’re going to have to go to get an application for a visa to become a freelancer. There are two places you can obtain this visa:
- The French Consulate (if you’re doing this application in your home country)
- If you’re in France at the Prefecture.
Now there are three different types of visas that I know of that normally freelancers apply for :
- Visa as a Professional Liberal
- Visa as a Commerçant
- Lastly there is Passport Talent
The professional liberal is just like a freelance status, commerçant is more if you’re going to be selling a product, and then the passport talent is normally for the types of industry that there’s a deficit. There’s a different criteria for each one of these visa. The criteria can often change for each visa so it best to ask what the most current criteria is, but I will give you the general requirements here so you can have idea what to prepare for.
Here are some of the things that you normally need to provide:
- Your passport of course!
- You’re going to have to provide a criminal background check from your country of origin, and if you’re already residing in France, you may have to supply one from France and your country of origin.
- A letter of motivation or cover letter, which basically explains why you want to do business in France, and what are your professional goals.
- A business plan
- Proof of medical insurance
- Prove that you have enough money in your bank account to support yourself.
Now, for all these documents that you have to provide it is best to ask which ones have to be translated. If you have to provide some documentation from your country of origin and for the business plan and the letter, it is best to know what language it has to be in. This will just help you prepare and prevent you from running back and forth constantly to the prefecture or consulate.
After if you have a successful application you’re going to need to declare your status as a freelancer in France. There is a website completely in English, which is called My Company in France, which basically walks you through step by step, the whole declaration process. So it’s definitely made a lot simpler for people now. This web-site you do have to pay fee but if you go to the French site to declare your business is free: www.autoentrepreneur.urssaf.fr
Normally, there are two statuses that I know that most freelancers use either to be an:
- Auto entrepreneur or
- Travaillier Independent
What’s the difference?
An auto- entrepreneur stands for an independent entrepreneur.
Travaillier independent stands for an independent worker. Well, the only difference between the two is basically an auto entrepreneur is a more simple You basically can do all your own paperwork and your accounts yourself, but you cannot earn more than 72,500 euros a year, and that actually has to be divided up through the year. So each month you have a cap on how much you can earn. It really depends on how much potential business you really think you’re going to have.
If you think you’re going to earn more than that or if you end up earning more than that, you’re going to automatically be a travaillier independent, which means you have to have an accountant who does your books, you have to charge TVA, which is sales tax, but you can also deduct your expenses like a normal business would.
Once you’ve declared your status, the next step that you’re going to do is to make sure that your business name is not taken by someone else. To make sure your business name is available, you’re going to go to the website, www.inpi.fr check that no one else has the trademark name that you would like to use. If the name is free, you’re going register your trademark by doing a depot de marque with this you can register your business name and your logo.
Need Financing for your Business?
If you need financing for your business in France, banks are obliged to help startups and entrepreneurs. There are two types of loans you can normally apply for:
- One loan is a prêt à la création d’entreprise Which basically means loan for the creation of a business or
- prêt bançaire au enterprise, which is a loan to help you run your business.
So if you want to have more information about financing for your business, you can go to www.conseilgeneral.com and they give you more information about how you can finance your business.
If you have any other further questions, you can feel free to leave your comments below. Also you can go this web-site which explain the whole process in downloadable PDF in French https://www.autoentrepreneur.urssaf.fr/portail/files/Guide_Auto-Entrepreneur.pdf
Hello Mundey, thank you so much for this information.
Do you have an idea of how much the social charge and tax is for auto-entrepreneurs? I read it is about 22.9%? is this a monthly fee?
Social Charges range from 25-30% depending on how much you earn. Yes it comes out every month.
Yes that is correct
After reading this article I booked a call with Mundey to talk 1:1 with someone who has actually been through the process (internet searches can only tell us so much!). Mundey was very friendly, lovely to talk to, and most importantly helpful and knowledgeable. She even shared a few extra links and resources of other people to speak to. Thank you again for taking the time to produce this content. Having a clear explanation of what can seem like a complicated process is so incredibly helpful. 🙂