Agence Limonier Insurance & Banking in France since 1992

Non-residents who own property in France

Posted on: 07 Aug 2012
Fiscal alert for non-residents who own property in France

The Draft Rectifying Finance Law introduced on July 4 has been approved by the National Assembly and the Senate on July 31. It is not yet officially published because some deputies and senators have requested a referral to the Constitutional Council (the right of recourse to this Council applies in matters relating to the constitutionality of laws). We will know within one month maximum what the final decision is, but in the meantime, the New Finance Bill applies, so read carefully the two measures which directly impacts non-residents.
 
1) Wealth Tax: In essence, we are going back to the 2011 system: no capping mechanism, threshold approach and taxation on your French assets over 1,3M€. If you have paid your Wealth Tax for 2012 back in July, a new Tax form will have to be filled between October 15 and November 15, and an additional payment will have to be made before Nov 15, 2012 to reflect the new rates.
 
The following tax rates apply:
Below 1.300.000 € : 0 %
From 800 000 to 1 310 000 € : 0,55 %
From 1 310 000 to 2 570 000 € : 0,75 %
From 2 570 000 to 4 040 000 € : 1 %
From 4 040 000 € to 7 710 000 € : 1,3 %
From 7 710 000 € to 16 790 000 € : 1,65 %
Over 16 790 000 € : 1,80 %
 
See below two examples:
 
Example 1: If your net assets as of Jan 1, 2012 amount to 2M€, you paid 5.000€ in July, based on the 2012 Wealth Tax Reform (2M€ * 0.25% = 5.000€). With the New Rectifying Finance law, your Wealth Tax will now amount to 7.980€, so you will have to fill a new Tax Form, deduct what has been paid in July, and pay 2.980€ before November 15, 2012.
 
Example 2: If your net assets as of Jan 1, 2012 amount to 4M€, you paid 20.000€ in July, based on the 2012 Wealth Tax Reform (4M€ * 0.5% = 20.000€). With the New Rectifying Finance law, your Wealth Tax will now amount to 26.555€, so you will have to fill a new Tax Form, deduct what has been paid in July, and pay 6.555€ before November 15, 2012.
 
 
 
2) Social Charges for non-residents: until today, non-residents were exonerated from the so-called “prélèvements sociaux” (Social Security charges) on top of their Capital Gain Tax (*) and rental income.
 
With the new Finance Bill, as soon as the Rectifying Finance Bill is officially published , non-residents will have to pay social charges - at a rate of 15,5% - on their Capital Gain Tax.
 
For non-residents with rental income, the additional rate of 15,5% will be effective as of Jan 1, 2012. Please note that the Article 25 of the Rectifying Finance Bill mentions that this tax is due on “revenus fonciers”, which translates as rental income, and designate from a French tax perspective income from unfurnished accommodation. Furnished rentals are considered as a different type of income and are taxed with a different approach.
 
 
(*) reminder: the Capital Gain Tax rate is currently at 19% for EU-residents and 33,3% for non-EU residents – if the property is sold within a five-year period. Tax allowances apply after 5 years of ownership.