There and back again, a yo-yo tale

… continuing the story.

Whatever the amount of money you make (and the way you earn it), you have to declare all your incomes . . . the best option ended up creating an independent activity as a micro-entrepreneur.

The stage is now set for my story; still, in order to sustain the suspense1 let me briefly mention another thing about my micro-entrepreneur venture. It concerns the social system of the self-employed; not the social security contributions that I have already treated in a previous post. Briefly, every worker must be affiliated with a social protection scheme in order to receive benefits for their social security coverage. However, in France, this scheme is (was) not the same for employees and the self-employed.

The Independents’ Social Regime (RSI)

This Social Security scheme (i.e. RSI) was – until recently (see below) – the compulsory social protection scheme for the self-employed (artisans, traders and liberal professions).

If you are an exclusive micro-entrepreneur, you will depend on RSI for your health insurance. Your interlocutor will be the organization contracted by the RSI.

Although, as a micro-entrepreneur, you are entitled to sickness benefits and family allowances under the same conditions as employees, the RSI was often criticized because of significant, and what is more recurring, dysfunctions2. To the point that many claimed that it was preferable to avoid the RSI altogether! Now, following my declaration of activity (see Becoming a micro-entrepreneur), my ‘company’ – that is me – was automatically declared to this social protection scheme and I had no choice but to switch from the general Social Security system to the RSI.

After my return to France, after more than 10 years in Texas, getting back in the (French) system was clearly not straightforward and obtaining (my) social benefits (back) was a real struggle. Telling the all story is beyond the scope of this post, but believe me, it was a real uphill battle getting a social security coverage (from the general Social Security system). Thus, I was quite reluctant to move to the RSI and start everything again. Fortunately, the transfer was relatively smooth.

A short-lived switch

Given the dysfunctions accumulated by the RSI since its creation, Emmanuel Macron – the French President in case people do not know – promised (during his presidential campaign) to abolish this system. The RSI was replaced by the Social Security for the self-employed – Sécurité Sociale des Indépendants (SSI) in French – on January 1, 2018. This reform was followed by a two-year transition period during which the SSI was integrated into the general Social Security system. Since January 2020, micro-entrepreneurs are indeed affiliated with the Primary Health Insurance Fund or Caisse Primaire d’Assurance Maladie (CPAM) in French.

This change is automatic. You have nothing to do. Your social protection remains unchanged, you keep the same rights.Sécurité Sociale Indépendants (ex-RSI)

Nothing to do, really? It turned out that I had to redo everything (once back with the CPAM). The worse is that neither organism (ex-RSI or CPAM) informed me about this; if I hadn’t asked the CPAM about my current situation, I would not have known that I was not covered anymore!

To be continued…

1 And, as explained in the previous post, to allow me to look into SiteGround‘s Site Tools thoroughly. ^
2 Among the most frequent reported issues, there were interruptions of services, errors in the calculation of pensions, or delays in payments of daily allowances; all concerns leading to an accumulation of disputes and legal proceedings by affiliate. Even the Prime Minister Manuel Valls described the RSI as a disaster! ^

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