Micro-entreprise v. entreprise individuelle: the difference finally revealed

What's the difference between micro-entreprise and entreprise individuelle? This question comes up a lot among my clients and I must admit that the legal and administrative language is very often confusing. I thought I'd draft a blog post to clarify this point once and for all.

In France today there are 2 main status for solo-entrepreneurs:

  • Entreprise individuelle (E.I or E.I.R.L*)

  • Société unipersonnelle (E.U.R.L or S.A.S.U)

wait what? micro-entreprise is not a legal status?

No it is not.

Micro-entreprise is an optional scheme that solo-entrepreneurs can freely choose whether or not to adopt, except for the S.A.S.U status.

However, those is entreprise individuelle as well as E.U.R.L can opt for the micro-entreprise scheme, provided their annual turnover does not exceed:

  • 176.200 euros for selling activities

  • 72.600 euros for service activities and «professions libérales»

what about the auto-entreprise?

Since January the 1st, 2016, there is no longer any difference between the auto-entreprise regime and that of the micro-enterprise. Henceforth, auto-entrepreneur and micro-entrepreneur are both legally referred to as "micro-entrepreneur".

what are the benefits of the micro-entreprise scheme?

The micro-entrepreneur scheme is a regime reserved for solo-entrepreneurs that gives them access to simplified administrative, tax and social security procedures:

  • Simplified calculation and recovery of income tax and social security charges : a percentage of the turnover paid every month or on a quarterly basis.

  • Simplified accounting : regularly updated log of purchases and payments.

It is however necessary to assess the relevance of the micro-entreprise scheme on a regular basis during the life of your business, in line with the evolution of its expenses and turnover.

Did you opt for the micro-entreprise scheme? Is it still appropriate for your business?

* The E.I.R.L will soon disappear. Read my article on this topic.


Hi I'm Mathilde, a lawyer passionate about entrepreneurship and expatriation. I support expatriates in setting up and managing their business in France. Do you have any questions or concern regarding your business? I'm here to guide you!

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