Setting up a Business in France

Overview by Globlatrade.net:

Legal Forms of Companies

Types of Companies and Capital (Max/Min) Number of Partners/Shareholders and Liability Registration Fees
Individual businessman alone
 
 
No notion of capital
1 person
 
 
Liability for debts on his personal property.
None
Limited liability company (SARL)
 
 
Set freely by the partners.
2 to 100 partners.
 
 
Limited to the amount of capital contributed.
Administrative formalities costs: around EUR 76.19; Advertising costs in the Gazette: around EUR 230.
Private limited company under sole ownership (EURL)
 
 
7,500 EUR minimum
1 person
 
 
Limited to the amount of capital contributed.
Administrative formalities costs: around EUR 76.19; Advertising costs in the Gazette: around EUR 230.
Public limited company (SA)
 
 
EUR 225,000 minimum if the company brings in public savings, EUR 37,000 otherwise
minimum 7 shareholders
 
 
Limited to the amount of capital contributed.
Administrative formalities costs: around EUR 76.19; Advertising costs in the Gazette: around EUR 230.
Simplified joint-stock company (SAS).
 
 
EUR 37,000 minimum
minimum : 1 natural person or legal entity
 
 
Limited to the amount of capital contributed.
Administrative formalities costs: around EUR 76.19; Advertising costs in the Gazette: around EUR 230.
General partnership (SNC).
 
 
no minimum
minimum 2 partners
 
 
Liability is joint and indefinite.
Administrative formalities costs: around EUR 76.19; Advertising costs in the Gazette: around EUR 230.
Limited joint-stock partnership
 
 
no minimum
2 partners: the active partners and the silent partners
 
 
The active partner: joint and indefinite;
The silent partner: limited to the amount of capital contributed.
Administrative formalities costs: around EUR 76.19; Advertising costs in the Gazette: around EUR 230.
Non-trading company
 
 
no minimum
minimum 2 partners
 
 
Liability for registered debts.
Administrative formalities costs: around EUR 76.19; Advertising costs in the Gazette: around EUR 230.
 
 

Business Setup Procedures

Administrative Formalities
The administrative formalities necessary to create a company have been simplified. Company formalities centers (CFE) have been set up; they are single places which forward all the documents in the creation dossier to the relevant services:
- the Clerk's office of the Commercial Court for registration in the Register of Commerce and Companies (RCS)
- the National Statistics Institute (INSEE) to obtain the numbers ( APE, SIREN, SIRET codes) necessary for recruiting employees and other procedures such as invoicing.
- the fiscal services (Tax Offices)and social services (URSSAF).
Some formalities are not taken care of by the CFEs such as requests for authorization for regulated professions or proof of domiciliation of a company.
Remember to check that the commercial name has not already been used or registered as a brand name with the INPI (National Institute for Industrial Property).
In addition, remember to reserve the domain name with the AFNIC (French Network Information Center) in case you decide to create a website in the more or less long term.
The Competent Organization
The Portal for the Company Formalities Centers
The register of commerce
Time Necessary for Registration
The wait is only a few days, but during this time the legal representative can carry out administrative formalities thanks to the receipt concerning the creation of a company.
 

Recovery Procedures

Principle
In the framework of the safeguard scheme, two legal decisions are generally made:
- being put into receivership, a state where payment stops, it is impossible to face the liabilities due with the current assets.
- compulsory liquidation, a persistent state where payment stops and receivership is manifestly impossible.
Since the law of July 26, 2005, it is possible for a buyer to make a takeover bid for a company once the safeguard or receivership procedure has begun.
Minimum Debt-to-Capital Ratio Triggering Liquidation
No minimum
Bankruptcy Laws
The Commercial Code
Reorganization and Rehabilitation Laws
The economic initiative Act 2003-721 of 1 August 2003
Company safeguard scheme: Commercial Code art. L. 626-1 et seq. and R. 626-1 et seq.

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