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St Bernard

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  1. For what it's worth..... I had contacted URSAAF  before the demand came through and was told to email them once the demand came through if I disagreed. As soon as the demand arrived, I sent the email and on Dec 27 received an email accusé de réception saying that the demand would be reviewed. Last week, after several attempts I got through by phone to a conseiller to be told that they had so many contestations that the Jan 19 deadline for payment had been suspended for those who had submitted them.
  2. If it is the case that S1 holders escape the cotisation subsidiaire (big if), then the reason I received the letter may be that my status altered in 2016 quarter 1 - ie I turned 65 and got the S1.
  3. I am officially retired ie I have an S1 form and as far as I am aware the UK is responsible for my health care contributions - thus, I had to get my EHIC from the UK. Will I still be liable for this cotisation subsidiaire?
  4. Thanks for the responses and pointing me in the right direction. Jan
  5. Hi I would be grateful if someone could point me to a good source for answering the following questions in relation to a UK private pension for someone who is French tax resident. 1 Under UK tax rules, on or after reaching pensionable age, you can take up to 25% of your fund as a tax-free lump sum. Do the French authorities treat this as taxable income? 2 How do the French tax authorities treat income drawdown from a SIPP? Many thanks Jan
  6. Hi Sorry that I did not see this post earlier. I live in the Ariège, so too far from you, but have been playing bridge down here for 6 years in local clubs. It's been a great way to integrate, make friends, and learn more French. The "standard francais" for bridge is not that complicated - it is based on 5 card majors with a strong no trump rather than ACOL. Checkout the FFB website (www.ffbridge.asso.fr) to find a club near you. I'm sure they would be happy to welcome you and to introduce you to the French system. There are plenty of  bridge books where the french is not difficult. The Le Bridgeur website is a good place to look although you may find things cheaper on Amazon.  Best wishes Jan Laury
  7. We live south of Toulouse in the Ariege but in the area close to the Aude and the Haute Garonne. Access to Toulouse is easy by the A66 or RN20. Sky looks very blue today and the Pyrenees are in the distance. What you need to be aware of in this area and the Lauragais is that it can get quite windy. It's a price worth paying as the climate is very good. Micro-climates abound in this area but generally, we find that it is drier here than slightly further south (Pamiers, Foix etc.) or west of the Ariege river. As for rain on a regular basis - no way!   Jan
  8. Thanks for that..it only goes to show that there's nothing new under the sun.
  9. I've come across this "new" product called Ecoswim. It states that it is " à base d'oxygène actif". It is ecologically sound and allows you to do without chlorine or ph testing. All you have to do is repeat the treatment every 2-3 weeks during the season depending on water temperature. Sounds too good to be true. Does anyone have experience of this product?   Jan Laury
  10. Thanks for that. I think you sat next to my wife on the flight to Carcassonne last Saturday! We have an abri - it was there when we bought the house - so rain is not an issue. The pool has been thoroughly brushed before the latest choc chlore treatment and the pump was on for 24 hours. We are aware that the slow release galets contain stabiliser but the stabiliser level is correct - verified on three separate visits to a pool specialist in Pamiers. I've set out more fully in another reply what we have done. We had also done a "preventative" anti-algae treatment. The algae problem may be centered on the filter bag housing we have been advised to pay extra attention to that and as a result put "anti-algues" directly into it as well as a "floater" with chlorine pastilles. We'll find out later today what the impact of that has been. So, thanks for the advice but we're still struggling.
  11. Thanks for that. We take out a good part of the water at the beginning of the season and follow up if necessary with a choc chlore. We did that some weeks ago and the chlorine level, as expected, was high. The water took a long time to become clear (much longer than usual) and we resorted to using JD Flash (hydrogen peroxide). That did the trick but the chlorine level fell to zero. Despite our adding chlorine tablets as per normal it failed to recover and gradually algae started coming back especially in the filter bag housing. We decided to do another choc chlore this week but following that the chlorine level still appears to be nil. The stabiliser level is correct so we know that we are not suffering from chemical saturation. So it's still a bit of a mystery.
  12. We have a Desjoyaux pool which is normally fine but this year we have a little problem. Having applied chemicals at the start of the season everything looks fine - the water is clear etc.. The ph level is correct and we have had the level of stabiliser checked independently and it is fine. However the level of chlorine appears to be nil even after a "choc clore" treatment. The result is that we have a lovely looking pool but with an uncanny ability to allow algae to develop. Any advice would be much appreciated. Jan Laury
  13. Or park it in the garage! It's amazing how many of the cars that were damaged could have been parked in a garage.
  14. We live 25 minutes north west of Mirepoix and missed the worst of the storm. However we have friends around Mirepoix who suffered badly. We know people who had windows broken (including Velux windows), car bodywork dented, car windscreens smashed, awnings shredded etc. Also, some people lost all their flowering plants and all the blossom and new leaves on trees destroyed. Damage was widespread from the Mirepoix area heading west with the Pamiers area badly affected. When a friend of ours went to the car windscreen repair place at Pamiers on monday morning, she was the 40th person to do so.   Mind you, it's been gloriously sunny and hot ever since but that's no consolation for those who were affected.   Jan Laury
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