French income tax dates deferred due to Covid-19

French income declaration dates are being deferred to later this year due to the Covid-19 crisis.

Those declaring by paper will have an additional month and those declaring online an extra two weeks – meaning that for the first time, the deadline will be later for those declaring on paper forms.

The government states that the extra time should allow the process to be carried out safely. This follows requests for an extension from the tax workers’ union Solidaires Finances-Publiques, which said this week that on a typical year 4.5 million people go to their tax office for advice and there were risks to the health of both tax workers and taxpayers if the original timetable was not changed.

At present due to confinement rules people are asked not to go to their tax offices but rather to contact them by telephone or email or the private messaging service in their personal account at impots.gouv.fr

The opening of the online declaration service at impots.gouv.fr has also been put off, by 11 days – from April 9 to April 20. The first applications by paper form will also be possible from then.

As last year, officially paper declaration is limited to those with no internet at home or unable to declare online for reasons of disability, advanced age etc; or to those living in certain designated black spots for mobile internet.

The tax authorities are asking that this year people be especially scrupulous in declaring online if at all possible, in view of the health crisis and the additional difficulty of processing handwritten forms.

The new dates are:

  • Declaring by paper (both residents and non-residents) – June 12, 2020 at 23.59
                                  
  • Declaring online

         Departments 01 to 19 (and all non-residents) – June 4, 2020 at 23.59

         Departments 20-54 – June 8, 2020 at 23.59

         Departments 55-976 – June 11, 2020 at 23.59

Those who declared online last year will not receive paper forms in the post this year, but if required for reference they will be available as usual via a search at https://www.impots.gouv.fr/.

This year a few people will benefit from an ‘automatic’ declaration. This applies to those who last year were taxed only on incomes that had been pre-filled by the tax authorities and who notified no changes of situation in 2019.

If this applies then those who declared online last year will receive an email letting you know when a summary of your known incomes has been placed in your online space at impots.gouv.fr If you have nothing to add you do not need to declare. If you declared on paper last time, you will receive a letter outlining the same information.

As an additional measure to avoid burdening those struggling to cope with the Covid-19 crisis, Public Accounts Minister Gérard Darminin has asked the tax authorities to suspend any checks being done into people’s tax affairs, and not to undertake new checks, especially for businesses in sectors that have been especially hard hit.

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