The Macron law of 6th August 2015 relating to growth, activity and equal economic opportunities goes one step further in the fight against fraudulent secondment of employees in France by companies established abroad. Foreign service providers and French companies which invite such services must comply with new declarative obligations and administrative sanctions are strengthened.

The French government is fighting against practices of foreign companies which second employees in France thus benefiting from a less onerous social security system in accordance with European legislation while refusing to comply with certain mandatory provisions of the French Labour code.

The law states now that foreign employers seconding employees in France must comply with all the provisions of the French Labour code applicable to companies established in France if in the State where they are established their activities relate only to internal or administrative management or if they pursue in France an activity of a usual, stable and continuous nature.

This is aimed at combatting the secondment of employees by “letterbox companies” established in countries with fewer social rights and contributions than in France.

Employers established abroad seconding employees in France must now file an online secondment declaration. Online declarations should enable the implementation of an exhaustive data base of companies operating in France in order to make controls easier. They must also submit documents translated into French to French labour inspectors allowing them to supervise the compliance with secondment rules.

Finally, the law provides that the maximum fine for breach of their obligations is now 500,000 euros (instead of only 10,000 euros). This applies to both foreign service providers and French companies which invite such services. The French Administration can now suspend the service for a maximum period of 1 month in the event of infringement of certain fundamental provisions by the employer established abroad.

Given these new rules aimed at fighting against fraudulent transnational secondment, we recommend that companies established abroad seconding employees in France and French companies inviting foreign workers to contact us in order to discuss further their new obligations.