American working for French Agency/Proper Tax Forms
Thread poster: Graham Patrick Cox

Graham Patrick Cox  Identity Verified
Portugal
French to English
Nov 6, 2013

I've recently left France and changed my business address to my home address in the U.S. With that, I will start declaring and paying everything in the States. In the past month I've tried to take on a project for an agency based in France. They of course asked for my "auto-entrepreneur" tax information. However, since I'm now paying income tax in the U.S. again, I provided them with the W-9 "Request for Taxpayer Identification Number and Certification" form to show them that I am now established outside the French system. I understand that this is the proper form to provide in lieu of my French "auto" number. However, they think the form is insufficient proof. Does anyone know if that is indeed the correct document for an American taking on outsourced work from a French agency? I'd like to show them that since I'm not on French soil and paying taxes to my native country, there is no reason for me to provide a French tax i.d. If anyone could find a link to a "centre d'impôts" site with a legal clause proving this, I would be forever grateful. I've hunted for days online and can't find any tidy piece of proof to satisfy them.
Thanks.


 

John Holland  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 03:55
Member (2012)
French to English
Déclaration de cessation d'activité Nov 6, 2013

The agency should accept the attestation of your "déclaration de cessation d'activité" as proof that you are no longer an auto-entrepreneur in France. More information here: http://www.apce.com/pid10397/comment-arreter.html

Maybe it would help to send some kind of proof of your new residence, as well.

It is important to make that declaration in any case, if you have not already done so. See: http://www.planete-auto-entrepreneur.com/gestion/pas-de-declaration-de-ca-pendant-12-mois.html


[Edited at 2013-11-06 10:06 GMT]


 

Graham Patrick Cox  Identity Verified
Portugal
French to English
TOPIC STARTER
Still seeking an official explanation from a French gov source Nov 6, 2013

Thanks for you help. I've been meaning to declare the change in my work/tax status.
Regarding the agency, the problem is due to their inexperience with a freelance translator working outside the European system. I was hoping to find some proof to show them that our collaboration would be legal and that American freelancers don't have the tax i.d. required in France and Europe. They don't know what to make of this lack of an i.d. numbers among Americans and fear getting in trouble with the French taxman (whatever the version française of uncle sam is) if they pay me for any work.


 

Sheila Wilson  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 02:55
Member (2007)
English
+ ...
US is no different from UK, AFAIK Nov 6, 2013

In the UK, freelancers don't necessarily have any sort of registered tax number; I think the same appplies in the Netherlands. Here in the Canary Islands I have a Spanish registration number but no VAT number.

It's high time this agency came to terms with hors-France. It's fine to help them, but it isn't your problem.


 

John Holland  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 03:55
Member (2012)
French to English
Here's a link that might help Nov 6, 2013

If you look at the "Services" section at the following link, it clearly states what a business in the EU that is buying a service from someone outside the EU needs to do about VAT ("s'autofacturer la TVA," then "déduire le montant ultérieurement"):
http://europa.eu/youreurope/business/vat-customs/cross-border/index_fr.htm

You, the seller, have nothing to do with that process.

As a courtesy, you could try sending them that link, with the suggestion that they look into "autoliquidation" with their accountant.

But I agree with Sheila that it is not your responsibility to figure this out for the agency.


 

Graham Patrick Cox  Identity Verified
Portugal
French to English
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks Nov 6, 2013

Thank you both for your help. I agree that it's not my responsibility to provide this kind of information—the accountant should be well-versed in these specifics.
I'm going to send the agency the link you provided, John, and after that I'm going to leave it all up to them.


 

xxxnrichy
France
Local time: 03:55
French to Dutch
+ ...
It has nothing to do with tax or VAT Nov 6, 2013

but with social security. French companies don't have the right to subcontract to people who are not registered and if they do they risk heavy fines ("travail au noir"). The only thing you have to do is to send them a proof that you are a freelance translator in your country and that you are in line with the laws in your country, especially for social security. If you have a SSN that is fine, if not then give them a proof that in your country you don't need one. If you don't have a law text, then take a sheet of paper and write that down.
(still thinking about my old boss who subcontracted to a clochard translator in the Paris metro and teachers in Russia who HAD no social security, and risked emprisonment for that)


 

Sheila Wilson  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 02:55
Member (2007)
English
+ ...
French authorities don't care about foreign SS Nov 6, 2013

They want to catch workers illegally working in France; they couldn't care less about the same situation in the US. This agency has no right to US social security codes. In fact I believe it's sensitive information.

 


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American working for French Agency/Proper Tax Forms

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