Disposal of company shares is subject to Registration fees of:
- 0.1% for shares (in a société par actions simplifiée [SAS], société anonyme [SA] or société en commandite par actions [SCA]) – other than for listed companies in the absence of deed (exempt), or
- 3% for company shares.
Base for assessment: normally this is the selling price of the shares / their market value if higher.
Exception : real estate investment companies
As an exception to this principle, Article 726 of the FTC provides as follows for real estate investment companies, regardless of their corporate legal form (société civile immobilière [SCI], société anonyme, société par actions simplifiée, etc.):
ðA rate of 5% (similar to that applicable to real estate asset disposals);
ðAs of 2015 and prior to 2012, the tax base for registration fees is the price of the shares disposed of, or their sale value, whichever is the greater.
For the period 2012 – 2014, the tax base for registration fees was determined in a specific manner, namely:
ðDuties are payable on this base for assessment pro rata to the percentage of the company’s shares being sold.
This method of calculation raised many difficulties, particularly with regard to determining the “acquisition debt”, which is why it was abolished.
Only shares in companies predominantly engaged in real estate activities are subject to fees in this form.
At least 5 different definitions of “predominantly engaged in real estate activities” are in use for tax purposes.
ðFor the purpose of registration fees (Article 726 I. 2° of the FTC), a company is deemed to be predominantly engaged in real estate activities if its assets are, or have been during the course of the year preceding the share disposal, comprised mainly of:
For payments of duties (see Acquisition / Disposal > Real estate asset > TPF > Payment of TPF ).