2. Health Insurance Cover in France

  1. Introduction
  2. Health Cover for Self-Employed
  3. Health Cover for Cross Border Workers
  4. Health Cover for Retired Persons
  5. Health Cover for Early Retirees
  6. European Health Insurance Card (EHIC)/Global Health Insurance Card (GHIC)
  7. Travelling Abroad from France

2.2. Health Insurance in France for Self-Employed

If you are relocating to France and propose to run a business then you obtain automatic affiliation to the French health system, which occurs as part of the process of business registration.

This includes those who register as an Micro-Entrepreneur who also automatically obtain health cover.

Your business registration will take place at one of the registration centres, called the Centre de Formalités des Entreprises (CFE) e.g. Chambre de Commerce/Métiers. It can also be carried out on-line.

The local health authority (CPAM) will subsequently write to you inviting you to join the system, at which point some formalities will be required.

You and your family will all be covered for health care; there is no need for both husband and wife to set up a business as both are covered, provided one of them has a registered business.

Nevertheless, an economically inactive spouse/civil partner of a business owner or salaried person in France does have to make their own application for health cover, rather than as a dependant of their partner, an issue we considered in our Newsletter article Access to Health Care for EEA Residents.

As a self-employed person you will pay social security contributions, which includes those for your health cover.

If you are an existing self-employed person, but retain substantial links to your home country, you can work in France for up to two years, and retain affiliation to your existing home social security and health system.

For UK nationals HMRC states that certain other conditions have to be met. The main ones are that the person has to:

  • Habitually carry out substantial activities in the UK;
  • Pursue the self-employed activity in the UK (generally for at least two months) before going abroad;
  • Maintain the means in the UK to carry out the self-employment when they return.

You will need to provide all relevant information to HMRC who decide on a case by case basis. You can contact them at National Insurance: non-UK residents. You can also use Check which country's social security legislation applies to you (CA8421.

Next: Working in UK & Living in France

Back: Form S1/E106 Health Cove

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