The official literature states that without any turnover declared within four consecutive quarters, your auto-entrepreneur business in France will be automatically closed. It does not seem to work this way in practice, as auto-entrepreneurs who did not declare any business turnover in their first year, are automatically being switched to a standard micro entreprise. The direct consequence being a call for social charges cotisations similar to a business in its second year.
URSSAF (Unions de recouvrement des cotisations de sécurité sociale et d'allocations familiales) for instance will consider your business as being in its second year and will send you a yearly bill of 1,368 euros. This does not even include the pension or CSG charges. So what should you do if you registered your business in January or Feburary 2009 and have not billed any customer yet?
Your first option is to invoice a customer before the end of your first year, in order to stay in the auto-entrepreneur system. The second option is to close your business down (cesser son activite). Your final option is to accept the switch over to the micro entreprise and to pay over 3,000 euros of social charges in the new year…
If you have not declared any turnover over the last year and receive a letter from URSSAF or RSI (régime social des indépendants) asking for a yearly cotisation, do get in touch with them. Both are usually very understanding and might help you close your business down.