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French Social Security Requirements for Crew Temporarily Overturned

Sep 13th 17


The new French law requiring superyacht crew living in France to pay French social security was temporarily overturned yesterday, September 11. Implemented on July 1, the law applied to those spending more than three months a year in the country, regardless of nationality or yacht flag, with the exception of crew already contributing to another EU system or country with reciprocal agreement with France. Non-French employers would also need to pay, either by furnishing a bank guarantee, representing a year’s worth of social security for all crew, or depositing six months of social security for all crew with French authorities. 


Thierry Voisin, a Nice-based broker and current president of the European Commission of Professional Yachting (ECPY), previously explained to Dockwalk that the decree, as originally written, caused serious issues. “The immediate consequence of this decree and a sharp increase in employers’ contribution rates is that French residents working as crew are now unable to find work, and French residents already employed as crew are losing their [jobs],” Voisin said a few weeks ago. 


Many yachting companies have been petitioning the new rule for nearly six months, finally receiving some promising news. After the French ministers held a meeting on September 8, the French marine trade organization Fédération des Industries Nautiques (FIN) stated on their website, “The Prime Minister has fully grasped the problem. Now, the withdrawal of this measure is registered.” 


“The office of the prime minister decided that crew would be taken out of the boundaries of Article 31,” says Voisin. “Crew will have the choice to elect to choose the French ENIM (social security regime for crew) or other systems/regimes, which have not been specified to date. ”  


This should get confirmed during a vote for the law regulating the financing of the 2018 social security system in November 2017, he adds. “We have hence won a battle, but not the war, since it remains to define what alternatives exist to ENIM,” says Voisin. 



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