Brexit and Social Security : what happens to posted and multi-state workers?

Brexit raises many questions about posted and multi-state workers’ social security, given such situations are governed by EU regulations.

What is the impact of Brexit on posted and multi-state workers’ social security?

The United Kingdom (UK) left the European Union (EU) on January 31st, 2020 at midnight.

This exit was enacted on a coordinated basis through the adoption of a Withdrawal Agreement signed on January 24th, 2020 establishing a transition period until December 31st, 2020 during which all EU regulations and standards continue to apply.

Summary of the rules applicable to posted and multi-state workers

EU employees who are seconded to the UK, UK employees who are seconded to the EU and individuals who are multi-state workers before December 31st, 2020 can apply for an A1 certificate under Regulation (EC) n° 883/2004 from the relevant social security authorities.

Change in practice of the French social security authorities regarding the application of Article 30 of the Withdrawal Agreement

According to the Article 30 of the withdrawal agreement, social security authorities should issue A1 certificates covering the entire secondment period or during the period of multi-state activity for employees who are multi-state workers, for situations starting before December 31st, 2020.

While the United Kingdom has accurately applied Article 30, France has not, until recently. In practice the services in charge of processing the A1 files (the “CPAM”) were limiting the period of coverage of A1 certificates to December 31st, 2020.

The French competent authorities have recently confirmed to us that they have instructed the CPAM to end this practice in connection with the issuance of A1 certificates.

The CPAMs should therefore strictly apply Article 30 from now on, by issuing A1 certificates covering the entire period of secondment or of multi-state activity.

From a practical point of view and concerning the A1 certificates already issued with an expiry date of December 31st, 2020, we recommend filing a request for amendment with the CPAM that has issued the certificate.

Uncertainties about the regime applicable to posted or multi-state workers from January the 1st, 2021

While the 9th round of negotiations has just been concluded, the UK and the EU still have not reached an agreement to regulate their social security relationships after December 31st, 2020.

The rules that will apply to employees who will be multi-state working or seconded to or from the UK from January the 1st, 2021 remains undefined to date, pending the outcome of undergoing negotiations between the EU and the UK.

Diane Artis

Diane Artis, Partner, has over 20 years’ experience in French and international individual income tax matters. She assists leading worldwide companies in French individual tax matters, including income tax consequences […]

Fatia Bouteiller

Fatia Bouteiller joined Taj in 2017 to strengthen the Immigration team. She has 15 years of international mobility experience in the areas of immigration, expatriation and social security law.

Aude Barrans

Manager within the International Mobility team, specializing in social security and immigration issues, Aude Barrans advises companies on a daily basis in the context of professional immigration of their foreign […]