Microentrepreneur: How to Register your Micro Enterprise in France


July 5, 2017 by Crescentine

Do you want to quit that 9 to 5 job and follow your dream of becoming a business owner? Are you also ready to take the entrepreneurial plunge but not quite ready to put all your eggs in one basket? Expressions aside, if you said yes to one or both questions then registering as a microentrepreneur in France is for you!


It’s a low-risk way of starting your business, getting the ball rolling and testing the waters before you make any major investments. You can register your micro-enterprise online in the comforts of your home in France! Ahh quelle bonheur!

Microentrepreneur is the new term for autoentrepreneurs in France. Most people who engage in small-scale independent work whether service providers, manufacturers or product vendors normally start as micro-entrepreneurs.  Read more about it HERE.

What are the advantages of being a micro-entrepreneur?

  • Low financial risks – earn nothing, pay nothing in taxes
  • No required initial investment or capital
  • Reduced taxes and fees (Total of 25% of your gross revenue instead of 40%+)
  • You do not need to charge TVA (VAT) to your clients and customers
  • No official accountant needed. Simply keep track of your invoices and receipts.
  • Online registration and declaration of turnover whether monthly or trimester.
  • Quick registration time of two weeks
  • You can be employed and be a micro-entrepreneur at the same time


What are the disadvantages of being a micro-entrepreneur?

  • There is a gross revenue ceiling imposed. EUR 82,800 for product vendors and EUR 33,200 for all other types of professions. It’s not much but it’s a start!
  • If you are solely a micro-entrepreneur, you will be under the RSI (Régime Social des Indépendants) instead of the CPAM (Caisse primaire d’assurance maladie)
  • If you are solely a micro-entrepreneur, reduced benefits such as no allocation chomage (unemployment aid) or arrêt de travail (long duration sick leave) from Pôle Emploi and less money allocated for retraite (retirement plan)
  • If you are solely a micro-entrepreneur, you must get and pay for your own mutuelle (health insurance) as you have no employer to provide it for you. It is also recommended that you get a plan for prévoyance (accident insurance) and possibly, another plan to complement your retraite.



Now that you know what you’re getting into. How does one become a micro-entrepreneur in France?

Note that in order to be eligible to be a micro-entrepreneur, you must have a long stay visa (which states that you are eligible to work in France) validated by the OFII. The number on the validation stamp will be required for the registration process.

Well, it’s easy! Follow my step-by-step instructions:

  1. Visit this website by clicking HERE.
  2. Prepare your scanned ID by following this example.
  3. Go to this website, accomplish the form and send!
  4. A confirmation e-mail will be sent to you and the Centre de Formalites Des Entreprises will review your application.
  5. If your application is approved, they will register your business following the information given to them on the registration form.
  6. After two weeks, you will receive all the official documents relevant to your business and it will be a LOT of paper from the following organizations:
    • RSI for your carte vitale
    • Agirc et Arrco
    • Insee for your business registration certificate, SIREN and SIRET (business numbers)
    • URSSAF
    • Net-Entreprises.fr for your tax declarations
    • CIPAV


Et voilà! You are officially a proud business owner. Using your SIRET number, you can now register on Net-Entreprises.fr by clicking on S’inscrire to register and then clicking on Déclarez et payez to pay your taxes and fees following the declaration schedule you chose.


*Some things to note:

  • Even if you don’t earn a single cent, you must declare this on the website following the schedule you chose (monthly or trimester). Otherwise you will be penalized!
  • After two years of declaring zero revenue, your microentrepreneur status will be revoked.
  • If you go above the profit ceiling, you will be required to register as an Entreprise Individuelle (Sole Proprietorship) in which you will have to pay the full tax % and submit to all requirements of that status.


Bon courage! :*



20 thoughts on “Microentrepreneur: How to Register your Micro Enterprise in France

  1. Alex says:

    Hi there, Great Blog.

    I’ve recently just received my Carte de sejour and now will be looking to start a micro-enterprise. I do a lot of consulting work from home. My question is, I’ve read that you are not allowed to only have one client. My client is based in the US and gives me freelance consulting work quite regularly. I don’t have any other clients. Am i still able to register for this structure? Thanks!!


  2. Reon Reinders says:

    Hi, Thanks a lot for the detailed info. As a foreigner (Dutch) starting out in France as a freelancer is quite a challenge. Could I ask you if you know if it would be allowed to use my current Dutch bank account for incoming payments which I earn under the micro-entrepeneur regime during my stay in France? I went to a local bank in France and they told me I need a seperate bank account (other than my French personal bank account) to use for payment purposes. But they were not able to inform me whether this would have to be a new French account or whether I can use my current Dutch account (which I also use for daily payments for groceries, buying goods, etc… in France).

    Secondly I will register as a freelance “translater/Adminstrative support”(traducteur), which I believe is a “liberal” activity. Do you know if I have to include VAT on my invoices? And how high the VAT is? Or can invoice without VAT and just mention on the invoice:
    ** TVA non applicable, art. 293 B du CGI / Exonération de TVA, article 283-2 du CG **

    Sorry about the hassle, would really appreciate the advice. Thanks.


    • Crescentine says:

      Hi Reon, no problem at all. It’s a pleasure to help you out!

      For the bank account, you have to open a new French account that will be used solely for the purposes of incoming payments and business transactions (It is recommended not to use this account for personal expenses). The bank representative should be able to give you advice on the best type of bank account to open.

      Yes, you are right, the traducteur is under profession libérale (I am also under this). The good news is that under the auto entrepreneur regime, we are exempted from paying VAT! So just put the “TVA non applicable, art. 293 B du CGI” on every invoice and receipt that you produce.

      Make sure to produce invoices and receipts for all your business transactions! There is no need for a professional third party accountant but you would need to keep clean and organized records in case they check.

      The tax is 25% of your total revenue by the way which is way lower than the normal 40% tax and you have a profit ceiling of 32k – 35k Euros per year.
      It’s possible to declare on a monthly basis or trimester (I chose trimester since monthly is too much of a hassle).

      Let me know if there’s anything else I can help with! 🙂


      • Reon Reinders says:

        Hi again.

        Thank you so much for your answers. I will open a French bank account as soon as possible and try to get my current contracters to pay me on that new French account.
        Great that we do not have to pay any VAT. I will include the line you wrote in your reply on my invoices. I do a lot of work for international based clients, I have clients from the EU (but all of them outside of France) and from around the world (outside EU). Do you know if it makes any difference if they are non-French/EU/non-EU? Or can I just add that line and that’s that.

        Also I would like to ask you, I am currently in the process of registering on the “urssaf” site to register as a freelancer using their digital registration tool “Déclaration de début d’activité” and when filling out the online document it asks to provide: “Votre régime d’assurance maladie actuel”. Is it necessary to get some health insurance in order to be able to register as a freelancer? I thought being registered as a freelancer would entitle me to benefit from the health system (and build up a pension for my retirement).

        Sorry if I seem a bit ignorant, just arrived in France and I just started learning French, so it kind of hard to understand what exactly they are asking sometimes 🙂

        Any help is much appreciated! I wish you a nice weekend!



      • Crescentine says:

        Hi Reon,

        Since you’ll be tied to the French government financially, it doesn’t matter where the money comes from when it enters your bank account in France as long as you pay your dues to France for your earnings after you pay all the transfer fees and the rate of exchange (You only pay taxes on the actual amount of money that hits your bank account). Just put the line on your invoices, plus all the pertinent client details and it’s all good.

        For the Votre régime d’assurance maladie actuel, I think (if i remember correctly) there is a drop down box with insurance companies such as Harmonie Mutuelle? (this is the insurance company I took), when you sign up as an auto entrepreneur, they make it obligatory for you to sign up with a mutuelle, so you can just choose one of them from the drop down box and they’ll send you the papers a few weeks after so you can choose your insurance plan with them.

        If this is not the case, the other thing I’m thinking about is they will be asking if you’re under CPAM or RSI. In this case, choose RSI or régime social des indépendants (if you’re going to be purely auto entrepreneur and not be employed with a french company at the same time).

        Hope I answered your question and no problem at all, I was just as confused as you are back then! 🙂
        If this didn’t answer your question, maybe you can send me a screenshot? Not sure if you can do that here, otherwise I can give you my email.


      • Reon Reinders says:


        Hope you are enjoying the weekend.

        Unfortunately I was not able to find out anything more about tax reductions. Guess there aren’t any.

        By the way do you know when I should pay my first social taxes? (on the site https://www.net-entreprises.fr/ )

        My registration as micro-entrepreneur was registered on 20-11-2017
        When looking on the website it says I should pay after 90 days of starting my activities. Would that mean I have to submit my social taxes on the site around 20-2-1018? And then again on 30 april 2018 – 31 july 2018 – 31 october 2018 -31 january 2019?

        I also went to URSSAF earlier and they told me I should pay for the first time on 31-3-2018.

        So not sure how to go about it. Hope you can shed some light on this. Thanks 🙂


      • Crescentine says:

        Hey Reon! Yes, just log in to net-entreprise.fr and then set up your payment method as soon as possible, the payment option only appears during the month in which you should pay anyway so if you log in during the month of March, you will see the option to pay but any other month outside of that, there will be no option to pay. Once you click the option, it will guide you through the step by step process, just put aside 25% of your revenue, that’s the amount of taxes you pay on the website every time 🙂


      • Reon Reinders says:

        Hi, Thanks for the info. I will keep an eye on the site then.

        One other question, maybe you know. I have received my papers for my health insurance (harmonie Mutuelle). Do you know if I also need to register separately for my pension, via CIPAV? Or is it automatically included in the social taxes which I’ll pay using https://www.net-entreprises.fr/

        Wish you a nice day!


      • Crescentine says:

        Hi Reon, it’s already part of it if I’m not mistaken 🙂 but better check to be safe!


    • Reon Reinders says:


      Thank you for your reply and information.

      I’ve submitted my application, so let’s hope for the best.

      Thanks again for helping me out, it was really great and kind 🙂

      Have a great day!



    • Reon Reinders says:


      Hope you are doing well.

      I’m still in the process of arranging all the documentation but at least I managed to finalize my registration as micro-entrepreneur. I wanted to ask if you know if I need to declare my services (and thus payments) to the French custom authorities for EU clients, by sending a “La déclaration européenne de services (DES)”? I am a bit confused because I believe as a non-VAT payer I am not charging any VAT, so there should not be a reason to declare it separately. But as I said I’m not sure about it. Do you have any ideas?

      Thanks and wish you a nice evening.


      • Crescentine says:

        Hi Reon, I’m doing great. I hope you are too!
        Nope, you don’t need to do this 🙂 We should have the same microentrepreneur status (profession liberale) and I don’t do this either and almost all of my clients are from the US, Middle East and Australia.


      • Reon Reinders says:


        Thanks for the info. Yes indeed we have the same status.

        Can I ask how you set up your invoice with regards to invoicing? For example, I have a client in Czech Republic, and they pay me in Czech Koruna. So I send them an invoice stating the owed amount in Czech Koruna (CZK). Do I need to create a seperate invoice for French taxes purposes in Euro? The company will pay me in Koruna and I will receive my money in Euro’s on my French account. Should I create a seperate invoice stating my amount in Euro once I have the exact amount on my French account and use it for the French taxing authorities?

        Tuesday I will have an appointment to arrange for my “numéro de TVA intracommunautaire à un assujetti non redevable” whicih I will need to use on invoices for Non-French clients, if I understand correctly. And I’m still in the process of setting up my French bank account, it is quite a hassle when you are not originally from France, but after that I should be ready to go. Finally! 🙂


      • Crescentine says:

        Hi Reon,

        I invoice my clients in the currency they pay me in (the invoice is for your clients, not for France) then when I convert that money to Euro, the euro amount is the one I declare on http://www.net-entreprises.fr when declaration time comes (which you can prove via bank statements anyway and the date of the transaction) then the system sends you a receipt of your declaration.

        Just keep all your invoice receipts and an organized excel sheet of how much the exchange rate is on the day that the money is converted and it shouldn’t be a problem. Make sure to note the date you invoiced, the date you received the money, the exchange rate and so on.

        I did not get a numero de TVA intracommunautaire since I won’t be charging for TVA anyway but I think if your clients are within Europe, they might want this number for their own VAT-paying purposes.

        I hope the bank can give you some counsel regarding your french account! It shouldn’t take too long for you since you are an EU citizen (it only took me a week to open my French account or less, i think).


      • Reon Reinders says:


        First of all the best wishes for 2018! And of course many thanks for the previous reply.

        I would like to ask you if you know if I can use my bank account which I created specifically for the earnings as micro entrepreneur, for outgoing payments connected to my freelance work. Such as the required professional (liability) insurance, the montly fee I need to pay to maintain my bank account, buying of supplies, new laptop, and so on…?
        Are there any other deductions you know when submitting my annual taxes? I searched on the internet but I am not able to find any conclusive info, nor if I can use my bank account other than only for incoming earnings for my freelance work. Hope you have some experience in that department 🙂

        Have a great day! Reon


      • Crescentine says:

        Hi Reon! Happy new year as well, I hope you had a great celebration. Yes, you can use this bank account for business related expenses such as insurance and equipment. However, I don’t know much about the deductions when submitting annual taxes, so far I have not had any deductions to my taxes. Do let me know if you find anything about this! 🙂


  3. J says:

    Super, K! I’m so excited to register my business soon. Thanks for the comprehensive info. I feel like you’re with me on this journey every step of the way. 🙂


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