Lawyer challenges social charges on EU pensioners and non residents

Paris court could hear 300 cases over levies that may be 'unfair'

A Paris avocat seeking to challenge the continued levying of French social charges on the capital income of people who are not affiliated to French social security (non-residents or EU pensioners) in 2016 says he has 300 cases awaiting court hearings.

The chance of refunds for earlier years followed court rulings, however, France now claims the charges are no longer funding the general, insurance-based, social security system but the FSV, which pays for income support for the elderly, and so they are valid.

Avocat Jonathan Bensaid argues that the charges are still unfair for groups of people such as non-residents who pay social charges in other countries and that FSV is still closely linked to social security. “I’ve been working with MPs for the French abroad to look at legal arguments challenging the government on this,” he said.

Mr Bensaid said he is advising people affected not to accept the charges but to contest them in writing and, if necessary, to go to court if refused.

Note that eligible people must make reimbursement claims for levies in 2014 by the end of 2016.

Claims relating to levies in 2015 can be made until the end of 2017, however, in theory, 2016 levies - eg. on property sales this year - are no longer eligible according to the government’s current guidelines.