...and the air is blue. P is brilliant and deals with all this stuff. From the moment we arrived here we have done things properly and above board. There are many expats who operate under the radar but we cannot. Due to our business we are on a special regime, all managed online and we declare every quarter what we have earned and pay 26 per cent in tax. On top of this we fill in an annual form to declare our private pensions and the rental income from our English house. The thing is the form does not allow for the fact we pay the tax on our rental in England. So every year we get a big tax demand. We then gather all the paperwork and visit our tax office. We always see the same lady who brings out a dusty box labelled 'anglais' and does a lot of sighing. I do feel for her but we conduct the interview in French as she does not speak a word of English. She always says they are in the wrong then spends ages looking at the computer and writing on bits of paper. Eventually she arrives at a number and somehow we always have a hefty bill, despite what they pay back. Last year we had a large refund, then this year we had to pay it all back. We were told we would get two letters, one in March and one in June with a final date for payment. A week later we had a letter to say we were due another large refund. The March letter never arrived. Now we have a section that asks about rental property but we think it is just for French property. It means another trip to the tax office!
The lady will look heavenward when she sees us and will drag her dusty box from the depths of the cupboard and settle down to sort us out. Whatever she tells us will be incorrect a week later and yet again we will leave feeling she has no idea what she is doing. We will wait for the demand but not be surprised if it never arrives. We will continue to put money away each month to pay our tax and if a refund comes we put it away too against another demand. So we have a fund to cover our tax incase it should be asked for. Above all we will make sure we are at the office well before 12 as France stops for lunch!