It’s that time of year again… you know, the time when you receive a dreaded blue plastic envelope through the post containing your Declaration d’Impots. Surprisingly these must have been sent at about the same time as Earth day, do the French government not have any concern for the environment? Surely, a recycled paper envelope would be better, although I’m sure they have a good reason (that reason maybe being that a dog cannot eat a plastic envelope?).
I’ve been so caught up in events recently, that I didn’t even realise these blasted things were in the process of being sent out. But lo and behold, despite my busy life, the French tax office certainly did not forget me. How thoughtful of them! Maybe they read my post ranting about not having a right to vote despite paying taxes?
I was intrigued to see that they had pre-completed parts of the form for me. How did they know how much I earned in 2009 and more importantly how did they know about a bank account that both Hubby and I had forgotten about? They just know. But thanks to them we’ve located an account where we have about 100 Euros and earn a teeny tiny amount of interest each year. That’s saving for you! Of course, I now have to check everything to make sure that they’ve got it all correct so I now know what I’ll be doing this weekend. It’s going to rain anyway, so it’s not as if I’ll be missing out on any fun outdoor activities.
For those of you that are unfamiliar with French tax returns, this is a true social event. My earliest memories date from my first propery job, where we used to spend our lunch breaks calculating how much income we were allowed to remove in order to pay less tax. French Francs (yes, even though I am not yet 30, I have been working that long) could be deducted depending on how far away you live from your place of work and also whether or not your company provides kitchen facilities. It always was an interesting debate as to whether the decrepid microwave consisted of kitchen facilities.
The basic form is just 4 pages long, but trillions of other forms exist and should be completed depending on what you need to declare. Of course, they don’t necessarily send these forms to you, so you have to know what they are and where to find them. An interesting task indeed!
You also get a 24 page guide on how to complete it and then a new guide with each new form. This makes for great bedtime reading and for anyone with insomnia this may just be a sure-fire way of finding sleep.
Sorry, I’m feeling very sarcastic, so I’ll go and pour myself a glass of wine and I’ll leave the French speakers among you to re-visit this amusing song about the French tax man I posted last year…