The Commercial Code is the main Company Act in France. This law stipulates the most important requirements and rules for a company organization and structure. The Company Law in France also refers to some rules in the Civil Code and in the Monetary and Financial Code. As far as company registration in France is regarded, the Act of December 19, 2002 mentions the obligations of all companies set up in France to register with the French Registry of Commerce and Companies, also known as the Registre de commerce et des sociétés.
The French Company Act describes clearly the types of commercial companies and the difference between these types and civil companies. The main business structures recognized by the French Company Act are:
- limited liability company or SARL,
- joint stock corporation or SA,
- partnership or SNC,
- simple joint corporations or SAS.
Civil companies are also mentioned in the Company Act in France as non-trading business structures, known as SC (societes civiles). All requirements for these types of companies are mentioned in the rules of the Company Law in France.
The French Commercial Code mentions the “fonds de commerce” which are involved in sales of businesses and acquisitions. As a matter of fact, “fonds of commerce” give security creditors when it comes to commercial companies in France. Agency and distribution are also mentioned in the French Company Act.
Contracts signed in France always mention articles of the French Civil Code and Commercial Code, therefore it is recommended that when signing agreements and setting up companies entrepreneurs are aware of the content that the articles refer to.
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