Advertisement

Living in France For Members

How to file your 2023 French income tax declaration

The Local France
The Local France - [email protected]
How to file your 2023 French income tax declaration
It's tax time! Photo: AFP

From who needs to complete it to what income you need to declare, here's your guide to the 2023 income tax declaration.

Advertisement

Tax declarations in 2023 opened on April 13th, and you have until late May or early June (depending on where you live) to complete the declaration.

Do I have to do it?

Probably, yes. France's tax system has everyone declare their taxes in the spring for the previous year. That means that your 2023 tax declaration is based on your 2022 income - the French tax year runs from January 1st to December 31st.

Previously everyone resident in France had to fill in the income tax declaration (déclaration des revenus) but that has recently begun to change, following the introduction of 'taxing at source' for employees.

This only affects employees, not self-employed or retired people, and only a few categories are concerned - if this affects you, you will receive a notification by email, or been exempt from last year's declaration.

Advertisement

If you belong to this group but something has changed since your last fiscal declaration (anything at all - income levels, address or other) you will still need to declare your taxes.

Everyone else needs to fill in a declaration, even if you don't earn any income in France (for example people who get a pension paid from another country).

READ ALSO: What the French government doesn't tell you about filing taxes

Property tax declaration

Please note that the income tax declaration - déclaration des revenus - is not the same thing as the property tax declaration - déclaration d'occupation. The property tax declaration is a one-off form that must be filled in in 2023 by everyone who owns property in France, including those who live in another country.

Find full details on the property tax declaration HERE.

When is the deadline?

Tax declarations opened on April 13th

The deadline to have the return completed depends on where you live and how you file

  • Monday, May 22nd for people who do the declaration on paper - the process is now largely online but there are exemptions for people who do not have internet access, while most people filing for the first time will also file on paper. The declaration must be posted by the end of May 22nd
  • 11.59pm on May 25th for non-residents and people who live in départements 1-19
  • 11.59pm on June 1st for people who live in départements 20-54
  • 11.59pm on June 8th for people who live in départements 55-96 and France's overseas territories

Can I only do it online?

The government has vowed to render tax declarations paperless, although if you are filing a declaration for the first time you may have to do it on paper.

Exemptions for online filing include groups like elderly and people without internet access - for example those living in so-called 'white zones' - who may make their declarations on paper and send them in by post.

You can get your tax form at your local tax office, or download it and print it from the tax site.

If you are having trouble you may call 0809 401 401 for help.

Advertisement

First time declaring? 

If this is your first year filing a tax declaration in France, you will first need to get a tax number (numéro fiscal) and then set up an online account on the tax website of impots.gouv.fr.

READ ALSO How to get a numéro fiscale

Once you have received the number, you then need to register with the tax website.

If you are already registered online for property taxes such as the taxe d'habitation, you use the same site.

Visit the site impots.gouv.fr and go to the section that says "votre espace particulier".

This is where your recent declarations and tax bills will be found. 

If you are not registered, you first need to set up your online account - head to impots.gouv.fr and click on votre espace particulier, if you have not created an account previously you will be given the option to set one up by entering details such as your name, address and social security number.

Once registered, head to the blue button 'Accéder à la déclaration en ligne' to begin filling in the online form.

READ ALSO Ask the expert - what to put in each section of the French tax declaration

What do I need to declare?

Everything, basically.

People often assume that anything they have already declared to the tax authorities in their home country does not need to be included on the French tax form, but this is not the case.

The French taxman is asking for all of your assets, which includes income from rental properties in another country and income on financial products such as shares or ISAs in the UK.

All bank accounts must also be declared, even if they are dormant. New information-sharing rules between international banks mean that your bank can and will tell the French taxman what accounts you have in your home country, and if that information doesn't match what is on your French declaration you could find yourself in trouble. 

Tax credits are available against tax you have already paid in another country - so you don't end up paying twice on the same income - but you must still declare it.

International tax specialist Jason Porter explains more here.

What if I forget something?

If you realise too late that you have made a mistake on your tax declaration, you have until mid December 2023 to correct it on the government's website, impots.gouv.fr.

Advertisement

Taxed as a household 

In France you are taxed by household. So if you are a married couple or if you are pacsé (in a civil partnership) then you should make one joint declaration rather than two. If you got married halfway through the year you can now declare one common declaration for the whole year.
 
And if you have any children living with you that are earning then you'll need to declare their earnings too...and that includes any summer jobs. 

Tax deductibles

There are some professionals, including journalists, who receive tax breaks from the French government. 

The French can also claim tax breaks for house improvements, child care and gifting so it's worth asking if you think you might be able to benefit.  Find out more about the deductions available here.

Visit the English page of the tax authority's website

The tax section is less labyrinthine than some French government websites, and there is a section in English.

This can be found here.  

More

Join the conversation in our comments section below. Share your own views and experience and if you have a question or suggestion for our journalists then email us at [email protected].
Please keep comments civil, constructive and on topic – and make sure to read our terms of use before getting involved.

Please log in to leave a comment.

humphrey.wills 2021/04/09 22:58
What sterling - euro exchange rate should we use for 2020 tax year?
[email protected] 2020/04/13 21:33
What if I move to france in the middle of the tax year? Do I have to declare income before I arrive?
  • hibernian51 2021/03/23 23:02
    I have the same question.

See Also