The French Law Practice is dedicated to international private clients dealing with France and the UK


A Place in the Sun

France's two types of council tax

I have heard that French people pay two annual municipal taxes, the "taxe d'habitation" and "taxe foncière". What is the difference between the two taxes and if I buy a holiday home in Brittany would I have to pay both of them? Also, how much roughly are these taxes annually - do they vary much by region? Greg Price

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How to make the most of tax tourism

sunday_times_20091101Accountants are being kept busy finding places to which Britain's tax exiles can relocate, writes Elizabeth Colman (The Sunday Times 01.11.2009)


There are lucrative income tax breaks available to residents of France, which allow individu­als to work in the UK for longer than 90 days.
Caroline Cohen, of The French Law Practice, said: "Since 2008 President Sarkozy has been making changes to tax laws to attract more people to France."

French property owners face big rise in tax charges

Bill could hit thousands of Britons with second homes

writes James Charles

SECOND-HOME owners with properties in France could be hit with a new annual tax bill costing tens of thousands of pounds after a clampdown on non-residents by the French government.

Changes to the French wealth tax will force France's 360,000 non-resident property owners to pay more tax from January 2012. Dermot Callinan, head of the private client practice at KPMG, the accountant, said: "These are significant changes and Britons with property in France should look at them carefully to see how they are affected."

Ask the French law expert

Guide us through French inheritance laws

Q. My husband and I are looking to buy in France. My husband has been married before and has two adult children. I have not been previously married and have no children. Would it be better to buy the property in my name only? Also, if we did this, would his children still automatically inherit a share of the property should he die first? The children are to be left the property after our deaths, but we want to protect my interests should he pass on first.

Our notaire has sprung an unexpected bill on us…

Q When we signed the compromis de vente for our house in Normandy we asked the notaire to list all the costs we would have to pay connected to the purchase of the property. He told us that it would be a percentage of the agreed selling price (€156,000), and his clerk gave us an estimated figure. However when we went back to the notaire’s office for the final signing, he presented us with a bill for 50 per cent of the géomètre’s charges (€350). We did not expect to be given this bill, as we did not agree to pay half the cost of the géomètre’s bill in the compromis de vente. Is this normal? What should we do?
Pete Humberts, by email

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These publications are intended to provide general information and guidance only and are not intended to provide advice to any specific person.

You are recommended to seek professional advice before taking or refraining from taking any actions based on the contents of these publications.

Tax law is subject to change.