The number of self-employed workers continues to increase in France. With the Covid-19 pandemic, many people have embarked on entrepreneurship, sometimes for very modest incomes. It has become necessary to guarantee better coverage of sick leave and maternity leave for self-employed workers in precarious situations. Thus, since 1East January 2022, the health insurance funds can pay a daily allowance calculated on a previous activity, if it is more favourable. Explanations.
Self-employment, an often precarious situation
The number of auto-entrepreneurs is increasing sharply in France. At the end of June 2021, i.e. one year after the confinement linked to the Covid-19 pandemic, France had 2.23 million active self-employed entrepreneurs. The Urssaf has counted no less than 400,000 new entrepreneurs between June 2020 and 2021. This increase amounts to 17.2%. It is particularly marked in the delivery and retail sectors. However, autoentrepreneurs are less and less numerous to make a positive turnover. The share of auto-entrepreneurs in the population of self-employed workers is growing.
A report published by INSEE in January 2022 reports a worrying situation for the self-employed. In effect, slightly more than one in 10 self-employed earn less than half the annual minimum wage. Thereby, one in 10 self-employed lives below the poverty line. The most numerous in this case are the women and the young people starting a professional activity. People in activity over 65 and those working in the fields of information, arts and entertainment are also included.
Improved coverage of sick leave and maternity leave for self-employed workers
Until then, the rule in force in the event of stoppage was particularly harmful for low-income self-employed workers. Indeed, in the event of low income from activity, the amount of the daily allowance received could be low or even zero.
Since 1East January 2022, the health insurance funds can pay a daily allowance calculated on a previous activity, if it is more favorable. Insured persons under the self-employed scheme can benefit from it if:
- They were prescribed a work stoppage from 1East January 2022;
- They started their activity from 1East January 2019 and whose maternity leave began after 1East November 2019.
Self-employed workers must also meet one of these two conditions:
- Have a work stoppage in the 12 months following the end of their salaried activity or their unemployment compensation by Pôle Emploi;
- Or, currently receiving compensation from Pôle Emploi for a previous salaried job.
If the self-employed person meets these criteria, he can request a review of his rights via the “Request for re-study of daily compensation file” online service available on the demarches-simplifiees.fr website. The request can be made in the event of nil or very low daily allowances received during sick leave or maternity leave. These stops must have started on 1East January 2020 for sick leave and on 1East November 2019 for maternity leave.
Alexia F., Doctor in Neurosciences
– Slightly more than one in ten self-employed earn less than half the annual minimum wage and live below the poverty line. insee.fr. Accessed April 4, 2022.