New status of the individual entrepreneur: what are the rules?

Good news to allow individual entrepreneurs to put their personal property protected from possible seizures by creditors, which concern professional activity: a law of February 15, 2022 changes their status. The details of Jérôme Cesbron, vice-president of NCE, business consulting notaries, and notary in Grenoble.

franceinfo: When we talk about individual entrepreneurs, who exactly are we talking about? Who is affected by the new law?

Jerome Cesbron : This law applies to a very large population, because it is anyone who exercises a commercial, artisanal, liberal or even self-employed activity, so it can be the plumber, the artisan butcher who exercises without recourse to a company.

This law creates a unique status for individual entrepreneurs. Which ?

It is a status which is extremely protective, unique, which applies to everyone. This status will make it possible to dissociate, within the heritage of the entrepreneur, two parts: the goods which are qualified as useful for his professional activity, and the others, which will represent his personal heritage.

The advantage of this status is that personal property is protected from possible seizures by creditors concerning the professional activity.

But not for the state…

Yes, safe, provided you behave as it should, and fraud corrupts everything, and will terminate this particular protection.

From when does this new status apply?

It applies now. There are several methods. Either the companies that will be created by registration, if necessary, three months after the promulgation of the law which dates from February 15, 2022, or when an entrepreneur will behave as such.

So from now on it is applicable. The statute will apply for new debts. There is no retroactivity on existing receivables but for all new items, the status is immediately applicable.

Is this good news for entrepreneurs?

Yes, because it is a status that is automatic. There was already protection through recourse to the EIRL, which was created in 2010, but which required a fairly cumbersome process and which did not have the expected success. The good news is that without doing anything, all entrepreneurs will automatically benefit from this protective regime.

Is there not a risk of having less access to credit from banks?

This is obviously a risk that exists. Provision is made for the possibility for the entrepreneur to waive the protection of the statute for a particular claim. So if there was a significant need for financing and this requirement from the bank, he would have to renounce, vis-à-vis this creditor, the protection, but he could still have access to the credit and he would retain the protection of the status for all other potential creditors.

It will also be easier to pass from this status to society?

Absolutely. The contributions of the activity are simplified. We will be able to make contributions free of charge, that is to say simply bring our activity to a company or contributions for consideration, that is to say, transfer it to the company in a very simplified way.

Another aspect of this law is easier access to unemployment benefits…

The ATI allowance, the self-employed worker allowance, which has existed since 2019, was reserved for bankrupt independent contractors. With the new law, bankruptcy will no longer be necessary.

As soon as an entrepreneur will cease his activity because it is not economically viable, he will be able to benefit from this self-employed worker allowance of 800 euros for six months.

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