Can we continue to trade via a UK business when living in France?

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My wife and I operate a leisure business consultancy in the UK with English clients. The business is a UK Limited company and we are joint directors. We gain the benefit of our individual tax allowance and also we have tax free dividends after paying corporation tax from the company profits. We pay monthly national insurance contributions to Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (HMRC). We submit annual self assessments and pay personal tax annually. The company pays corporation tax annually. We are about to set up an online consulting platform that clients in the UK subscribe to. This can then provide a profit stream that can be increased when in France. The business is very particular to the UK as it involves British pubs.

  1. Can we continue the limited company and fulfil tax responsibilities in the UK as we currently do? We would pay UK taxes and retain the income. Does this then have to be notified to the French Tax authorities? Would tax then need to be paid in France? Would social charges need to be paid in France?

My wife and I are about to start an art and craft related business in the UK. It will initially be with my wife as a sole trader with me working with her. The intention is that when we move to France next year we will operate an art and craft business with some other related activities (art and craft holiday breaks, perhaps some income for guests attending the art breaks). The business will sell in UK, France and worldwide via the internet and at various exhibitions and shows in UK and France. My wife also intends to write.

  1. Can all of my wife’s activities be included in one business?
  2. Does my wife need to register as auto-entrepreneur in France?
  3. What is the income level for the auto-entrepreneur business?
  4. At what level does TVA need to be charged?
  5. We do not need to charge VAT in UK as the turnover level will be below the VAT threshold. Does all income have to be included in auto entrepreneur for income purposes?
  6. Does my wife need to register with art associations in France? We understand Maison Des Artistes is beneficial.
  7. Apart from the on going business with our consultancy company in UK I will be working with my wife with in the art and craft business and may also do some work as a self employed property agent. Do I need to then set up this as auto entrepreneur? If so is the income independent of the other income from UK in terms of the threshold?
  8. We would need an appropriate accountant to help us in France. We will be living at our house near Orbec in Calvados. Do you know of a suitable accountant?
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