The differences between secondary occupation or main occupation
The differences between being self-employed as a secondary occupation and being self-employed as a main occupation are significant. It’s therefore better to be properly informed about your rights, as well as your obligations, when you opt for one or the other social status.
As a self-employed person as a secondary occupation
- You work as an employee at least half-time in parallel with your self-employed activity.
- If you work more than half time as an employee, your social security contributions are lower because you build up your social rights through your employer.
- The social contributions you pay do not entitle you to any further social rights.
As a self-employed person as a main occupation
- You are 100% dedicated to your own business.
- Your contributions are higher because you are fully responsible for your social security.
- You are therefore entitled to more security: pension, reimbursement of medical expenses, compensation in case of work incapacity, assistance in the event of pregnancy and childbirth, etc.
In short, being self-employed as a secondary occupation is ideal for people who want to start their own business without taking too many risks. The status of self-employed as a main occupation will be more suitable for those who wish to take the leap straight away
Why start as a main occupation?
There are several reasons for moving from being self-employed as a secondary occupation to being self-employed as a main occupation:
To devote yourself full time to your business
If you are self-employed as a secondary occupation, at least 50% of your time must be devoted to your parallel job as an employee. Although this is a nice safety net, it doesn't leave you much time to develop your business properly.
By becoming self-employed as a main occupation, you have the freedom to think big, to flesh out your business' growth strategy... in short, to make it grow with far fewer obstacles.
To avoid being taxed more
The income you earn as a self-employed person as a secondary occupation is added to your income as an employee. If the total amount is too high, you may end up in a higher tax bracket... and you will have to pay more taxes than expected.
Being self-employed as a main occupation avoids unpleasant surprises of this kind because it simplifies things: you will have only one tax base.
To benefit fully from social security
If you are self-employed as your main occupation, you will have to pay higher social security contributions. However, this additional expense gives you access to many significant social rights:
- reimbursement of medical care,
- compensation in the event of work incapacity
- a pension,
- child benefits,
- childbirth allowance or assistance to self-employed mothers who have recently given birth.
How do you start as main occupation?
Would you like to change your social status? This is an important step in your journey to self-employment, but the administrative procedures are quite simple:
- Before making your final decision, ask your accountant to draw up a financial plan for your full-time activity. What’s the purpose? To ensure that you will generate sufficient turnover to be able to earn a salary you can live off without requiring other funds.
- Is your project viable? Notify your social insurance fund of your change in social status. At Securex, our experts will take the necessary steps to ensure that your social security contributions are immediately adjusted so that you avoid regularisations.
- Take advantage of your new freedom and devote yourself fully to your self-employed activity!
In addition to changing your status, do you also want to set up your own company or take over a business? In this case, the procedures are more numerous and complex. Don't hesitate to contact us so as not to forget anything!