The French presidential campaign season has officially started, micro-entrepreneurs are granted limited liability, and watch out for those April fish! Here are the French news stories you need to know about this week.
1. France’s Presidential Campaign Kicks Off
This year’s French presidential elections have been making the news for months now, but yesterday (Monday 28th) marked the start of the official presidential campaign season. The first-round vote is now two weeks away, at which point French voters will be able to vote for any of the 12 candidates—Marine Le Pen, Eric Zemmour, and Nicolas Dupont-Aignan (far right),Valérie Pécresse (right), Emmanuel Macron (centre-left), Anne Hidalgo and Yannick Jadot (left), Jean-Luc Mélenchon, Fabien Roussel, Philippe Poutou, and Nathalie Arthaud (far left), and Jean Lassalle (ruralist).
From this point on, TV and radio stations are required to devote equal time to all of the 12 candidates, regardless of their popularity, and equal amounts of space are given to presidential campaign posters on public buildings. Each candidate is also able to produce a state-funded video broadcast during prime time and send out ‘professions de foi’ letters to voters laying out their campaign promises.
The next step in the French presidential elections will be the first-round vote, which takes place on April 9th in some French overseas territories and April 10th in mainland France and the remaining overseas territories.
2. Happy April Fools!
It’s April 1st this Friday, also known as April Fool’s Day for many anglophones around the world. In keeping with the global tradition of practical jokes, France also gets in on the fun, and over here, it’s called the ‘poisson d’avril’ (the “April fish”). On April Fools, French schoolkids typically create paper fish to stick on their classmates’ backs, and newspapers and news broadcasts often create a fake news story in accordance with the tradition (and there’s very often a fish-related theme as a clue, so keep a look out!).
3. Changes to Micro-Entrepreneur Status
Good news for the more than 2 million French small business owners and freelancers operating under the popular micro-entrepreneur status (also known as the auto-entrepreneur). Last month, a new law came into place granting limited liability to those operating under the micro-entrepreneur regime. Essentially, this means that in the event of bankruptcy or business financial difficulties, the personal assets of the individual cannot be seized by creditors, bringing the regime in line with that of other business regimes.
Official details of the law ‘Loi n° 2022-172 du 14 février 2022 en faveur de l’activité professionnelle indépendante’ can be found here.
4. Last Chance to Sign up for the FrenchEntrée Webinar
Our first webinar of 2022 will be held this Thursday, March 31st, at 10am GMT. I will be hosting, along with an expert panel including FrenchEntrée Property Consultant Fiona Watton, Currency Exchange Specialist Mar Bonin-Palmer from Moneycorp, and International Legal and Tax Advisor Dan Harris from Stone King.
They will be offering their top tips and advice for Buying in France in 2022 and answering all your frequently asked questions on buying French property and moving to France.
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