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Everything posted by zarathustra

  1. Got the tax bill through (we don't have to pay until November) for a PACsed couple with a child (we actually have two, but the second one won't count until next year). For 2010 our joint income is only 2,000 euros more than 2009, and yet they want 5.97% of that, as opposed to 2.04% the year before. That makes for a huge difference. Is this the same for everybody, or do I need to call them up and ask why there is such a big discrepancy from the previous year? It wouldn't have been such a big issue, but I'm on my third year of being a micro-enterprise, and as a consequence have huge cotisation bills to pay this last trimester, and this years cotisation totals more than 50% of last year's net revenue. I was sort of expecting a sting, but was still a bit more than I'd bargained on.
  2. As someone who had used Darty for three years with a fibre optic internet connection at eye watering speeds, free phonecalls to most countries and TV for 30 euros a month, I was a bit worried when the previous owners of the country house I moved into said the hamlet only had dial-up or satellite. I checked degrouptest, and indeed the house was a long way from the exchange (more than 7km) and it didn't look promising. It was either Alice or Orange, and I didn't like what I heard about the former. Orange, gave a few different responses on the phone which was confusing, but eventually I learned a 512k connection was possible, but I couldn't cut myself off from France Telecom. I pay 16 euros a month for the latter, and 28 euros something for an Orange Livebox 512k, with phone and TV (though I don't have a TV). I was fearing the worst, but having done a speed test, I really do get the full 512k speed, which is quite slow but so much better than dial-up. After a few problems with the phone, it is now working much better than the France Telecom line. I've been here a month and have had no issues with the Internet, so I am happy. I can even just about watch a youtube video at the basic resolution, without pauses for the most part. lol! Not quite as good as downloading a 4 gig file in a matter of minutes, but I can live with that.
  3. Letter should be printed material, books, documents etc. I send printed paper material, but put them in poster tubes so they do not get crushed, but depending on which post office I go to, and who the member of staff is, they often seem confused that documents are allowed to be sent in poster tubes. You can send fairly big items by courrier - see this page: http://www.laposte.fr/courrierinternational/index.php?id=595 Carte : longueur comprise entre 140 et 235 mm*, largeur entre 90 et 120 mm*. Rouleaux : longueur (L) + 2 diamètres compris entre 170 et 1 040 mm*, la plus grande dimension ne pouvant être supérieure à 100 mm*, la longueur ne pouvant dépasser 900 mm*. Autres envois : longueur (L) + largeur (l) + hauteur (H) = 900 mm (la longueur ne pouvant pas dépasser 600 mm*). * avec une tolérance de 2 mm.
  4. I've not looked at ecopli before now, but it just seems to be for France and French colonies.
  5. Based on that article and the fact it is missing on the price list page I would say the service no longer exists. Many of the pages on La Poste do not get updated that quickly, but the price list is usually up to date. One thing rings true in that article, in that the staff often do not seem very aware about the various postal options, rules/regulations and dimensions for sending. I always take a copy of the price list, along with some pages from La Poste and the Postal Universal Manual which I have had to use to make my point, and eventually they have to conceed, albeit with a bit of resentment for being shown they don't know their job properly.
  6. Prices have changed on the La Poste website today. Although it's a service I've never used, I couldn't see Eco Paquet on the price list, though they still have petit paquet prioritaire for international post. Anyone know if La Poste have disposed of the Eco service?
  7. You're right - eco is 1,80 euros, and priority 2,00 euros. This might change on the 1st July though, but it shouldn't be by much if it does.
  8. I've not looked at the prices, but the lady in the post office was suggesting my post go eco at under 100grams for 2 euros. Still it's not a bad price, if you can keep the weight down.
  9. Howdy. If your wife is resident in France and selling on UK, then yes, she can and must register her business in France, and pay her taxes in France, and the AE scheme will no doubt be the best for her. Paypal changed me over to Paypal.fr but you can have an eBay account in whatever country you like. I've had ones for the UK and USA whilst living in France. If you can make a tidy profit the AE scheme is very nice, but for others it can be a harsh system. Also be careful at the post office, as they like to try and fob you off with their more expensive services. I moved address and went to my most local post office today for the first time (5km from home) in a small village. Nobody else was there and the lady looked bored. I told her I had a document in a tube already stamped with the price for lettre prioritaire. She very slowly decided to weigh it, check the prices, and said I was 20 cents short for an eco packet. I said, no it was a priority letter. She looked a bit confused, so I pulled out a load of printed matter from La Poste website, showing pictures of tubes, the stated dimensions allowed, and the fact that it can fall under letter post. She looked mistrustful still, so I showed her the price list from La Poste, and that it was marked as a service from the Postale Universelle, then pulled out the paperwork and terms and conditions for the Postale Universelle (which La Poste conforms to) for international items. She spent ages peering at it. I tried to explain I had a carte pro, and had been sending this way for three years. She eventually (although seemingly a bit reluctant) stamped it and sent it on as letter post. Do look up French postage and your rights, and costs. You could find it costs a good deal more than UK prices, and the post offices are as accomodating as Royal Mail. Also be wary about eBay and their DSR ratings, because not everybody appreciates you are in France, and if the post is slow, they'll rate dispatch as shipping - a few too many of those in the year, and eBay will ban you indefinitely. Not a nice environment in which to sell, which is a shame because it can bring in a lot of new customers.
  10. Hope you have a good pair of wellies and they're paying you well! Looks beautiful in its former glory.
  11. Not the world, just one very messed up dude. Mind you it wasn't that long ago when the same thing happened to a stranger sitting on a bus - I forget the location and exact circumstances.
  12. URSSAF gave my an attestation with CSG figures and what can be deduced, but after making futher enquiries I can neither use it for this, nor my main tax form. RSI simply said to include all cotisation paid during the year, and you do nothing with the CSG, so that's what I've done.
  13. Not to worry got through to RAM who told me what to do.
  14. I received my Déclaration commune des revenus form, and I know which boxes to fill, but had a query about section 2 and cotisation. I presume I total up all the cotisation I paid in 2010, but with CSG and CRDS taken from the calculation? I'm not sure where I find the latter amounts? Can I assume it means I do not include the tax paid on my revenue to the impots (which I wouldn't include anyway) - and does it also mean I can't deduce any tax paid on interest (which again I have no intention of including).
  15. To reach my new office, it has to pass through one thin wall, and a thick wall, but with glass door, so hopefully I'll be alright... If worse comes to worse, I'll ask to have a new telephone socket installed.
  16. Thanks Angela - seems to put my mind to rest, as my new office will be the former dining room, and I don't think there's a phone socket in there. Hopefully thick stone walls won't impede the wireless connection.
  17. Cheers, fortunately I do know uploads are much slower... If I'm desperate I'll see if I can't FTP it through my partner's android - it's ironic that it has better capabilities than my future Internet.
  18. Would Orange immediately offer AFAIK, or would I need to ask, and does it usually cost more? Too many acronyms - my head is swimming. I know one of the neighbours has the Internet (dial-up though). There's only about half a dozen houses in the hamlet, but I don't know if the other hamlets within the 7km from the exchange will impact the speed? As long as I can get webpages to come up without it being too much like watching paint dry, I'm not too bothered by speed - I can always switch off the graphics in Firefox to speed things up, though I do have some personal websites that I will need to check, update and upload to from time to time.
  19. Thanks everyone for all your replies - I think it's all starting to make more sense to me now. :) It's a relief to know it will be faster than dial-up... I can live without YouTube and large video downloads - I've done all I've wanted with the fibre optic, and a slower Internet might encourage me to come away from the computer more often! Also great to know that being 7km from the exchange may not mean impede the speed too much. Would being on a wireless connection (very convenient for me) slow things a little though, or would it be worth while plugging in directly?
  20. I'm still scratching my head a little. If I understand correctly, you have to divide by 8 to get the kilo bytes per second, which is closer to the actual speed you might achieve? In which case a 512KBps (kilo bits) connection would be 64kbps (kilo bytes), and would that mean a dial-up of 64KBps would actually be 8 kilo bytes per second? Does this make any sense? In which case I can see how it might be considerably faster than dial-up.
  21. I currently have fibre optic, but will have to downgrade when I move next month, to a very rural location with a much slower rate. The package proposed is ADSL, from Orange and is wireless, but top speed of 512 Kbps (I suspect it will be considerably less in practice). Initially I thought half a meg - that's not so bad really, but does 512 kilobytes per second equate closer to a dial up of 64 kbps? I think it's the kB vs kb, bytes and bits thing which is confusing me. Although painfully slow, I'm told it is reliable, whilst the satellite systems are expensive, very limited in bandwidth, and prone to problems in bad weather, so I'm sort of stuck between a rock and a hard place.
  22. Having moved to France three years ago, just at the moment  the pound plummeted, I've been working more or less at 1 pound = 1 euro, so anything extra is considered a bonus. It must be tough on those who remember the good old days of a strong pound. Looking at the exchange rate today, it's not too great.
  23. Hi Panda. Thanks for the info. I'll probably just sit patient until around October time, and if they send something unexpected, I'll question it. Wonder why you have to appeal twice. Aren't URSSAF suppose to supply them with the necessary figures anyway? Seems a bit unnecessary that I have to calculate the net, and give it to CIPAV. Nevermind. :)
  24. Oh dear, seems like it's CIPAV time again. Just got my payment demand in the post, and they want over 3,000 euros (this is on top of URSSAF being 3 times as expensive this year, though I am in my third year of business and earning a little bit more). I'm a bit confused, because my estimation came earlier in the year showing tranche 1 as 1700 euros, tranche 2 as 0 euros and the retraite complementaire was 1,092 euros, plus the 76 euro invalidite deces. I mailed back the pre-appeal before the deadline to show my earnings were enough to warrant a 50% discount on the latter. I'm not sure why I now have 1,500 euros to pay in April and October, or whether the pre-appel will result in a modification when the October demands comes in. May have to give them a call.
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