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6 things to think about before opening your bank account

6 things to think about before opening your bank accountOpening a bank account with CA Britline is quick and easy. It takes 15 minutes to apply for your account, and there is no need to visit a local branch.

We appreciate that for many English speakers living in France, opening an account is just a first step. They are also looking for a bank which understands their needs and can help them in their daily lives, especially if they are new to French life.

CA Britline is a bank which understands you. We started out in 1999 and our English-speaking advisors have had the same or similar experiences facing anyone moving to France. Learning a new language, starting a business, renovating a property, or understanding French culture. These challenges can be exciting – and occasionally daunting, too.

Whether you have a new project, need guidance seeking residency in France or wish to enjoy a healthy retirement – here are six things to consider before opening your bank account.

  1. Open a separate bank account for a business. This is a legal requirement – even if you are a micro-entrepreneur (sole trader).

  2. Think about the insurance you need: house, car, complementary health cover, travel, and business. New for old house cover is not automatic – however, it is worth considering.

  3. Know your RIB. This contains all your bank account details to set-up payments and receive funds. Direct debit payments - prélèvement in French – works slightly differently in France.

  4. Tax. Submit your tax returns online as well as pay your taxes such as Taxe d’habitation; taxe foncière; CFE Taxe, Taxe d’impôt; and your cotisations. These are often paid on different websites.

  5. Keep your paperwork. For example, if you apply for a Carte de Séjour bills and other important documents provide proof of residency.

  6. Finding and choosing a doctor is different. In France, GPs and dentists for example are independent contractors. Ask for recommendations from friends or neighbours.


CA Britline can open an account for anyone living in France – wherever they are. We are only an email or call away.