What is an employer of record in France?

An employer of record (EOR) in France is a strategic partner that serves as the legal employer of your employees living in France. An EOR assumes all employment duties and liabilities on your behalf, managing payroll, benefits, taxes, and compliance. Partnering with an EOR allows you to hire employees in France without the burden of setting up a local entity in France or navigating intricate labor laws.

Employment Guide to Hiring in France

Explore the topics below to learn everything you need to know about hiring employees in France.

Hiring in France

Employment agreements in France

When employing an individual in France, the following formalities must be adhered to:

  • The employer must fill out a pre-hiring declaration form for newly hired employees (“déclaration préalable à l’embauche”)
  • When hiring its first employee, the employer must inform the French Labor Administration (“Inspection du travail”)
  • The employer has to register the company with the complementary pension funds (“retraite complémentaire”)
  • The company has to acquire healthcare insurance (for medical expenses) and a provident insurance (for the risk of death, invalidity, and incapacity) that complies with the specific provisions of French law and of the applicable collective bargaining agreement (if any)
  • The full names of all employees have to be recorded in the staff register (“registre du personnel”)
  • When hiring a non-French employee (excluding European nationals), the necessary immigration formalities must be completed

Probationary periods in France

Probationary periods in France help mitigate risk in hiring. Employees can be subject to a probationary period that enables the employer to assess employees’ skills. Unless an employee’s collective bargaining agreement outlines increased protections, the contract can be terminated during the probationary period without cause and at no additional cost to the employer outside of providing the mandatory notice.

This probationary period is not automatic and must be provided in the employment contract. The French Labor Code provides that the probationary period can be two to four months (depending on the employee’s position). Standard probationary periods are two months for office and blue-collar workers (“employés et ouvriers”), three months for supervisors and technicians (“agents de maîtrise et techniciens”), and four months for executive employees (“cadres”).

Average working hours in France

Usually, employees work 35 hours per week.

How an employer of record helps you hire in France

An employer of record (EOR) allows you to hire in France without the headache of setting up a legal entity in France. Because most companies don’t have the resources or extensive knowledge to compliantly hire in international markets, an EOR helps you engage top talent from anywhere and support them based on their local needs. 

As an industry-leading EOR in France, Velocity Global is a trusted partner in hiring in France. By acting as the legal employer, we hire your new team members through local, compliant employment contracts—and you get back the time and flexibility to focus on your growing business.

Get expert help with hiring in France

We're ready to guide you with global hiring, payroll, benefits, international workforce compliance, plus pricing information.

Man smiling with building behind him

Payroll in France

Payroll cycles in France

The payroll cycle in France is generally a monthly cycle, with wages paid by the last working day of each month.

Wages in France

As of May 1, 2022, the minimum wage in France is €1,645.58 per month or €11.75 per hour on a 35-hour working week. This minimum wage is one of the highest in the European Union.

Bonus payments in France

Bonuses in France are not mandatory unless it is part of a collective bargaining agreement; however, most companies offer some type of bonus pay. Many French employers pay their employees a bonus in December, known as the 13th-month salary.

How an EOR helps you run payroll in France

An employer of record (EOR) in France helps you compliantly manage your global team payroll, ensuring consistent and accurate pay and tax withholdings for employees living in France. Think of an EOR as your international HR team that understands the complex labor laws and payroll regulations of different markets. 

Partnering with a trusted EOR partner like Velocity Global for global payroll administration in France offers numerous benefits, like access to a centralized platform for payroll data and reporting, secure data privacy and protection, and time and cost savings.

Taxes in France

Tax due dates in France

Tax return deadlines vary slightly each year and are announced in late spring of the same year the taxes are due. 

Tax thresholds in France

Non-French citizens categorized as French tax residents are taxed as French citizens on their salary and social security contributions. French tax residents are defined by having one of the following characteristics apply to them:

  • They live in France, or they have their main residence in France
  • They mainly work in France
  • They mainly have their economic affairs and interests in France

If a non-French citizen is not a French tax resident and works in France, a withholding tax at a progressive rate of 0%, 12%, or 20% is imposed on salary payments unless a double taxation treaty provides otherwise.

There is a tax deduction of 10% for a professional expenses allowance limited to €12,652 per year.

Health insurance in France

All workers are required to register for French Social Security. This system covers workers in case of injury, illness, maternity, paternity, disability, and death.

The French Social Security system provides universal health coverage, called PUMA, which ensures anyone who works for an employer in France will have their medical expenses covered from the day they start working. A worker’s family can also benefit from this coverage. The medical expenses which are covered in full or in part include:

  • Medical and paramedical expenses
  • Prescription medication expenses
  • Hospital expenses
  • Transportation expenses when covered by a prescription

PUMA health insurance in France is also accessible to all individuals, regardless of employment status, who have been residents in France for at least three months.

Pension in France

The required age to apply for a retirement pension is 62 years for anyone born after 1955.

The amount of the retirement pension paid by the French Social Security system depends on a worker’s duration of insurance and the average annual income of their career’s 25 most advantageous years. Retirees are entitled to draw between the minimum rate set at 37.5% and the full rate set at 50% of their average annual income from their career’s 25 most advantageous years.

How an EOR helps you calculate taxes in France

Payroll taxes are taxes imposed on employers and employees. They vary between countries, making compliance a hurdle for businesses that may not have the expertise or resources to navigate payroll taxes in France. 

As an employer of record (EOR) with a tenured global footprint, Velocity Global is knowledgeable in handling all aspects of payroll for you, including calculating and filing payroll taxes, withholding and remitting taxes, and issuing tax forms in France.

Calculate payroll contributions in France

Request a Quote for Your Global Team

Please fill out your contact information and hiring details, and an expert from our team will be in touch with you shortly.

Leave Entitlements in France

Annual leave in France

Employees are entitled to a minimum of five weeks paid vacation time a year and public holidays.

Parental leave in France

As of July 1, 2021, maternity leave in France includes 16 weeks leave (in principle, six weeks before the expected date of childbirth and ten weeks after). Mothers are required to take at least eight weeks’ leave. Six weeks are taken right after delivery, and they may be granted two additional weeks before the birth of the child in the event of a pathological pregnancy. If the birth leads to health complications, mothers can take up to four additional weeks after the birth.

Paternity leave includes 25 consecutive days or 32 consecutive days in the event of multiple births.

Adoption leave is set at 10 weeks for one child or 22 weeks in the case of adopting more than one child.

The amount of daily maternity, paternity, or adoption leave allowance is calculated from the average income over the last three months which leads up to the pre-natal leave. In January 2021, the allowance amount was set between €9.66 and €89.03 per day.

Sick leave in France

Employees absent due to illness or injury receive daily indemnities from the Social Security system for a maximum of three years. Emergency provisions for sick leave pay have been implemented as a result of COVID-19.

Regional and national holidays in France

France has the following public holidays, which are not included in the minimum holiday entitlement by the French Labor Code. However, employers generally give their employees all of France’s public holidays off work. Furthermore, collective bargaining agreements may dictate employees get these days off work:

  • New Year’s Day (January 1)
  • Easter Monday (March/April, this fluctuates each year)
  • Labor Day (May 1)
  • Victory in Europe Day/End of World War II (May 1)
  • Ascension Day (May/June, this fluctuates each year)
  • Whit Monday (May/June, this fluctuates each year)
  • Bastille Day/National Day (July 14)
  • Assumption of Mary (August 15)
  • All Saints’ Day (November 1)
  • Veterans Day/Armistice Day/Remembrance Day: End of World War I (November 11)
  • Christmas Day (December 25)

How an EOR helps you manage leave and PTO in France

An employer of record (EOR) supports companies by managing annual leave, paid time off (PTO), and even local holidays all over the world—including France. When it comes to handling a company's annual leave requirements, an EOR ensures compliance with local labor laws in France at every step. 

Some EOR partners, like Velocity Global, provide a platform that helps you oversee employee time off in France. By outsourcing leave and time-off management to Velocity Global, you can ensure accurate tracking, compliance, and seamless administration, freeing up valuable time and resources for other business priorities.

We’re here to help you hire in France

Get expert guidance with global hiring, payroll, benefits, and compliance.

Woman looking confidently at the camera

Employment Benefits in France

Federal benefits in France

Social Security (“Sécurité Sociale”) is the French public health insurance system that covers all life risks for residents of France. Employees and their families are fully eligible for France’s comprehensive Social Security system, which includes:

  • Health, maternity, paternity, disability, and death insurance
  • Occupational accident and illness insurance
  • Government pension contributions
  • Family allowances
  • Unemployment benefits

Supplemental benefits in France 

Supplemental benefits are extra benefits an employer provides to improve their workers' benefits package. Examples include:

  • Health insurance
  • Parental leave
  • Bonus pay

While France offers a generous healthcare scheme, French residents still expect additional coverage as part of an employer’s competitive rewards package. As an added benefit, employers can contribute to the “mutuelle” (private health insurance) beyond the mandatory 50%, covering additional expenses like vision and dental care. They may also increase contributions to cover medical costs for employees’ dependents. It’s common for French employers to provide more than the mandated paid time off for new parents, ranging from a few days to a month. In France, it’s customary for employers to provide their employees with 13th-month pay at the end of the year, typically equal to one month’s salary. Other additional benefits French employers may offer to attract top talent are flexible working hours, transportation reimbursement, meal vouchers, and gym allowances.

How an EOR helps you administer benefits in France

As the legal employer for your employees living in France, an employer of record (EOR) administers statutory benefits and ensures they are enrolled and contributing to the appropriate government benefits. Additionally, an EOR partner manages the administration of supplemental benefits, including ensuring employees in France receive tailored, expert-vetted, and competitive supplemental benefits packages. 

Velocity Global makes understanding foreign statutory and supplemental benefits easy and offers your workforce competitive benefits packages tailored specifically to France and beyond.

Terminations in France

Notice periods in France

An employer must give notice before dismissing an employee, except in cases of serious misconduct or negligence. The notice period in France depends on the employee’s length of service; however, it is usually one or two months. Different notice period durations may also be provided for by the employee’s collective bargaining agreement. A company may release the employee from working during the notice period and pay out severance in lieu of notice.

Severance pay in France

Severance pay depends on the employee’s length of service and the relevant collective bargaining unit provisions. It is generally calculated on the basis of an employee’s average salary during the last 12 months of employment.

How an EOR helps you process terminations in France

An employer of record (EOR) is responsible for processing terminations in the event you need to terminate an employee in  France. This may include adhering to local labor laws and regulations regarding termination procedures, including notice periods, severance pay, and any other statutory requirements. 

As an EOR with experience in terminations, Velocity Global helps businesses minimize the risk of legal disputes or liabilities in France.


  • How does Velocity Global’s EOR help businesses expand into France?

    An experienced employer of record (EOR) partner like Velocity Global makes it easy for companies to quickly and compliantly build and support distributed teams in France without the time and effort of establishing an entity. Velocity Global hires, pays, and manages your team in France on your behalf, allowing you to quickly engage talent without setting up local entities or worrying about violating local employment regulations. Partnering with an EOR in France is ideal for companies that want to convert contractors in France to employees, streamline mergers or acquisitions, or simply test the France market before making a long-term investment.

  • Can I hire in France without an employer of record?

    Yes. There are two options available for hiring in France without an employer of record (EOR): establishing a local entity or engaging contractors in France. Establishing an entity in France allows you to create a local branch or subsidiary, giving your company full autonomy over hiring and onboarding. This is a good option if you plan to hire a large team or establish a long-term presence in France. However, entity establishment is a costly and time-consuming process. It requires in-country expertise with local employment and tax regulations and can delay your ability to hire talent in France for many months. If you're not prepared for long-term investments in France or intend to hire a small team, setting up an entity can often be more trouble than it's worth. Hiring contractors is a flexible, affordable alternative to hiring employees in France, though it involves unique misclassification risks.

  • How are employees and contractors classified in France?

    In France, the classification of workers into employees and independent contractors hinges on the nature of the employer-employee relationship. According to French labor law, misclassification occurs when an individual who fulfills the criteria of an employee is incorrectly labeled as an independent contractor, or vice versa.

    Here are the factors used to determine the status of an employee in France:

    • The intentions of the parties, as outlined in the work contract
    • Integration into the company's operations
    • Duration and permanence of the working relationship
    • Nature of job responsibilities and duties
    • Payment structure, including salary, wages, and benefits
    • Degree of autonomy and independence
    • Level of supervision and direction received
    • Control over work processes and methodologies
    • Working hours schedule
    • Ownership of tools and equipment
    • Degree of exclusivity in the relationship
    • Degree of financial risk taken
    • Opportunity for profit or loss


  • What are the benefits and challenges of hiring in France?

    France is one of the world’s most modern countries and a leader among European nations. The country is the world’s seventh-largest economy as of 2020 and the second-largest in the European Union after Germany. It’s one of the easiest countries to do business with, according to the World Bank’s latest Doing Business report from 2019. France is also one of the most promising markets for tech firms considering global expansion, according to Velocity Global’s 2020 State of Global Expansion™ Report’s Global Expansion Tech Index™.

    Hiring in France poses unique challenges as well. Their legal framework, which is protective of employees, allows dismissal only under specific circumstances and following a regulated process. The Corporate Income Tax rate for businesses in France is 25%. Foreign companies are taxed on their income made in the country. The French Competition Authority may require notification of certain mergers and acquisitions due to anti-competitive regulations. Fortunately, using an EOR in France can help avoid these penalties.

  • What cultural nuances should businesses consider when hiring in France?

    Business introductions and meetings in France typically start and finish with a firm handshake and a fitting salutation. The French value when visitors respect their culture and language, appreciating the use of basic French phrases or greetings. Address clients by gendered titles and last names, switching to first names only upon invitation. Formal speech etiquette is expected, such as "Bonjour Madame Dubois," or "Au revoir Monsieur Monet." Passionate and deep conversations are favored during business discussions, while small talk is considered a waste of time.

    The French do not take a quick lunch break at their desk or alone in their office. Sharing lunch as coworkers, as a team, is seen as very important. The lunch break is usually several hours.

    Work-life balance is highly revered and considered sacred. Many employees include a note in their email signature stating, "If this email is sent outside of office hours, please do not reply immediately, unless it’s an emergency." Sending emails past working hours, during weekends, or on vacations can be seen as a Human Resources violation of moral harassment in France, so exercise caution in these practices.

Get expert help hiring in France

We’re ready to answer your questions about:

  • Hiring and paying talent without an entity
  • Maintaining compliance in France
  • Partnering with an EOR and how it works
Contact us

Read more about hiring and paying in France

City of Paris, France with Eiffel Tower in background

Employee Benefits in France: A Guide to Mandatory and Common Benefits

Hiring employees in France is an exciting growth strategy for global companies. However, foreign
Read this Blog
Balcony view of Paris, France, from the Grand Hotel Saint Michel

Hiring Employees in France: A Guide For Global Employers

With a highly skilled talent pool and the second largest economy in the EU, France is an ideal
Read this Blog
Neighborhood buildings of Pigalle overlooking Paris, France

Payroll and Tax in France: An Overview for Global Employers

With one of Europe’s main financial centers, a competitive corporate tax rate, and a diverse range
Read this Blog
More countries we serve

Browse through 185+ countries below to learn more about hiring in another market.