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Social charges, sick leave, SMIC: Change for workers in France in 2023

We also look at how the self-employed will receive more support and how unemployment benefits are changing

Reduced social charges for self-employed are permanent; sick leave rules tightened, minimum wage to rise Pic: sylv1rob1 / Pixavril / Lisa-S

Help with electricity bills

From January, there will be money off the electricity bills of small businesses. 

People will submit fuel bills to apply. 

The amortisseur électricité aid, worth up to 25% of the bill, will be incorporated in future bills. 

Self-employment support

Self-employed people will obtain a permanent social charges reduction this year, of about €200-€500/year, depending on their means, the government said, also to help meet energy costs. 

Read more: Two million independent workers in France to see social charges drop

Sick leave

From June workers will no longer be able to be reimbursed for arrêt de travail sick leave prescribed by someone online, other than their own GP or a doctor they have seen in person in the last 12 months. 

Read more: Sick note clampdown stops French workers ‘shopping around’ online

Unemployment benefits

Changes in unemployment benefit rules come in in February, with the length of time payments last set to change depending on the state of the job market, whether ‘green’ (normal) or ‘red’ (more difficult to find work).

The period of benefit after six months will be cut by 25%: someone who would have been able to claim for a year, will only be able to do so for nine months. 

However, if the job market has become ‘red’ during the nine months, they might be able to claim for the full year.

Read more: Labour shortage: France plans to tighten unemployment benefit rules

Minimum wage

The SMIC minimum wage is increasing by 1.8% on January 1, by €24 net/month to reach €1,353 net/month.

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