SHARE
COPY LINK

MONEY

France changes payslips to make tax declarations easier

The French Government has ordered the modification of payslips from January 1st to make it easier for people to fill out their annual tax declarations. Here's what the changes mean.

From January 1st 2022, French payslips have been simplified.
From January 1st 2022, French payslips have been simplified. Here is what you need to know. (Photo by DAMIEN MEYER / AFP)

Filing a tax return in France can be a complicated procedure – particularly when payslips are peppered with confusing acronyms like CSG, CRDS, APE and NAF. 

The French tax system is undergoing a change with the recent introduction of deduction at source (sometimes known as PAYE) for employees. 

However, for the moment most employees still have to file the annual tax declaration – even if all their taxes have already been deducted from their payslips and therefore their total tax bill is €0.

Now the French Government has passed a decree to simplify payslips and make it easier to work out how much of your income you need to declare. 

READ ALSO How to understand your French payslip

From January 1st, all French payslips must contain the following details in an easily identifiable section:

  • The amount deducted from the payment through prélèvement à la source (PAYE, or deduction at source);
  • The amount of overtime pay which is exempt from taxation; 
  • The amount of money you have earned which can still be taxed – or le montant du salaire net imposable

This last point is the most important because if you need to manually enter your earnings onto a tax return (which is the case for people declaring their earnings in France for the first time or filing their return in the post), this is the amount of taxable income you will have to declare.  

The new payslips will look something like this: 

This is the model for the new payslips introduced in France.

This is the model for the new payslips introduced in France. The impôt sur revenu box near the bottom describes how much of your work income can be taxed. Credit: legifrance.gouv.fr

When you file your tax return online, many of the fields are filled in automatically, but this new payslip makes it easier to check whether you have been taxed the right amount. 

Bear in mind that it is not just work income that is taxed in France. If you own a second home that you rent out in France, you will also need to declare these earnings.

If you live in a French property that you own, you will probably also need to pay the taxe foncière and the taxe d’habitation but these are declared separately from the annual income tax declaration. 

We have previously covered who needs to declare their income in France HERE

READ MORE

The online portal for declaring your 2021 income opens in April. 

Member comments

Log in here to leave a comment.
Become a Member to leave a comment.

FOOD & DRINK

7 tips to keep your grocery shopping in France affordable

With rising inflation and cost of living, many people in France are desperate to keep their grocery bill low. Here are a few tips for how to avoid paying too much for food, drink and other everyday items.

7 tips to keep your grocery shopping in France affordable

With inflation ticking upward, we’ve seen prices rise, especially for things like fresh vegetables, meat, pasta and cooking oil. Even though inflation is affecting food prices less than energy prices, buying groceries is still a huge part of every household’s budget, and unfortunately things are set to keep getting more pricey. 

We’ve put together a list of a few ways you can save a few euro at the supermarket:

Figure out if you qualify for any government benefits

First things first, it is worth seeing whether you can qualify for any existing government assistance, like CAF. On top of this, the French government has promised to set up a food voucher of €50 per month for low-income households after the parliamentary elections in June. 

READ MORE: EXPLAINED: How to receive CAF payments in France

Compare store prices

Unfortunately, going to the closest supermarket is not always the most economical solution. If you prioritise grocery stores on the lower end of the price spectrum (and you’re willing to walk a bit further) you can save a lot of money. A helpful tool to find the cheapest store near you is the “Que Choisir” online interactive map (click here) that has listed 4,000 affordable stores in mainland France. 

Discount grocery stores, like Lidl and Aldi, are great options for saving a little extra at checkout. But if you must go to a pricier chain, like Monoprix for instance, try to buy Monoprix brand items – they’re typically a little less expensive than name brand foods.

Plan ahead to make the most out of discounts

If you go online ahead of heading to the grocery store, you can see which items will be discounted (“promotion”). If you cannot find this information online, you can always go to the store and ask for a catalogue of that week’s sales items.

Normally, this is something the cashier should have access to. With these discounts in mind, you can construct more affordable recipes. 

Franprix’s website, the ‘discounts’ page

Also, if you’re looking for cheaper recipes in general, you can always go to blogs and online recipe sites specialised in frugal shopping. If you want to try some French specific sites, you can test out “https://www.marmiton.org/” or “https://1repas1euro.com/recettes/

When it comes to discounts though, be careful about conditions involved (particularly when it comes to loyalty cards).

Sometimes these promotions promise a lot, but actually getting your money back might not be as simple as slashing a few cents at the checkout – you might need to send the coupon somewhere to get the discount, or wait for points to accumulate on your card.

That being said, you can optimise your discounts using several online sites that allow you to combine your loyalty cards (Fidme, Fidall, and Stocard). Other online coupon sites include Groupon, which allows you to make grouped purchases (therefore cheaper), and Coupon Network and Shopmium, which help you benefit from existing discounts. For cashback plans, you can look to websites such as Shopmium, iGraal, FidMarques and Quoty, which allow you to be reimbursed for a part of your expenses.

Make a list, set a budget… and stick to it

It might seem obvious, but when you go into the store, try to resist temptation. The best way to do this is to keep track (in real time) how much you are spending.

Some stores make this easier by allowing you to carry around a ‘self-scanner,’ this will help you to watch your bill go up as you shop. Another tip for this is to withdraw the exact amount of cash you expect to need for the essentials of your trip – obviously in order to do this, you’ll need to know the base prices of your essential items, so it will require a bit of planning ahead.

Buy (then freeze) soon-to-expire products

A consumer’s best friend and sure-fire way to decrease waste! Items coming up on their use-by-date tend to be discounted, so if you plan to purchase these foods and then immediately freeze them, you can significantly extend their shelf life.

Lots of supermarkets make this easier for you by dedicating entire shelves to “short shelf life” items that, according to Elodie Toustou, the head of the “Money” section of the magazine 60 Millions de consommateurs, opting for these foods will allow you to “pay three to four times less.”

Another great way to do this is to use applications like “Phénix” and “Too Good to Go.” These applications will allow you to set your geographic parameter and then click on food stores, restaurants, and bakeries in your area that are getting rid of “panniers” (sacks) of soon-to-be-expired foods. Lots of times these panniers cost only a couple euros.

The trick here is to plan ahead by arriving at the start of the allotted time (if the boulangerie on your corner is offering “Too Good To Go” bags from 11am to 2pm, try to get there as close to 11am as possible for the best items).

Re-consider markets and farmer’s stores

Contrary to popular belief, buying from farmers’ markets and grocers that sell predominantly local products actually can save you money, particularly if you are buying the seasonally relevant fruits and vegetables. Buying directly from a producer can also allow you to eliminate the margin taken by intermediaries. But be careful, this rule is not true all the time.

One way to benefit from cheaper prices at markets is to arrive as late as possible, when the merchants have started to pack up their products. This might allow you to benefit from lower prices or even free items, as they’ll be hoping to get rid of their remaining items.

Know what items are most impacted by inflation

Finally, as inflation continues to increase, try your best to monitor which foods are most impacted. If possible, it might be worth removing or limiting them from your diet – or looking for more affordable alternatives.

SHOW COMMENTS