“Hello the taxman? Here a first-time declarer who wants to pay his first taxes … How should I go about it?” For the first time in my life, at the beginning of 2019, I wanted to declare my income. It took me five months of salaried employment before a certain tax awareness caught up with me. A conscience partly motivated, I admit, by the fear of late penalties. And good resolutions oblige, it was time to move from the status of fiscal ghost to that of model taxpayer. After some research, Google suggested that I learn how to do this via impots.gouv.net, the official public finance platform.
Step 1: fill in the “2042 form”, for lack of identifiers
On the site, the procedures seem relatively simple. I understand that you need identifiers to access your “particular space”. However, having never declared anything on this platform, I do not have them.
I quickly come across the paragraph intended for taxpayers who do not have these sesames. The process is summed up in just over two lines. “You cannot declare online, you have to file a paper income tax return (form n ° 2042). You will be able to declare on the Internet the following year after obtaining your identifiers” it is indicated.
So it would be that simple? Ok. I download the famous “form n ° 2042”. A Kafkaesque name, which strangely reminds me of the “A 38 pass” so precious to Asterix and Obelix to get out of the “house that drives you crazy” (read: the XII Works of Asterix). And I print it.
The copy has no less than six pages to complete. Hello anguish. Fortunately, the first information requested is basic: marital status, family situation, address, presence or not of dependent children. Phew: and here are the first two pages filled. More than four. But on the next sheet, things take a turn for the worse.
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Step 2: How do I calculate my income?
On the following pages, I must fill in the wages, salaries, pensions and other pensions that I receive. Fortunately, my case could not be simpler. My only income comes from my salary and gifts from my adorable grandmother (these latter “income” obviously do not count in the eyes of the tax authorities).
Small technical questions. Should we enter a gross salary or a net salary? Should we give a monthly salary or add all the paid months? Questions that seem obvious when you are an old hand in the payslip. But that are not necessarily for a novice. After a quick check on service-public.fr, it appears that I must declare net income, and obviously add it up since I have been in business. So I take out my calculator, and I write the result in front of the line “earned income.”
One of my colleagues smiles. “Do not forget to subtract the tax deduction to which you are entitled!” Little lucky that I am. Just like childminders or elected officials, journalists are indeed entitled to a small tailor-made tax niche. On condition of receiving income of less than 6,000 euros per month, it takes the form of an allowance of 7,650 euros on declared income. I write this figure in front of the “standard allowance” line on the document.
Step 3: we start all over again
At that time, I have a doubt about my approach. I notice that the form I’m working on is titled “2017 income statement.” Strange.