The value sharing bonus (VSB), formerly known as the Macron bonus or purchasing power bonus, is a scheme that allows the employer to pay the employee a bonus. This is a sustainable scheme that companies can set up each year. The bonus remains optional. We remind you of the main terms and conditions, as well as the changes applicable from 1 January 2024.
What is the maximum amount of the Value Sharing Bonus?
• €3,000 per calendar year and per beneficiary employee for all companies, regardless of their level of remuneration. VSBs are exempt from all statutory or contractual employee and employer social security contributions, from employer contributions to construction efforts and from employer contributions for the financing of vocational training and work-study programmes.
• €6,000 per calendar year and per beneficiary employee, regardless of the level of their remuneration, for employers who have put in place an incentive scheme in addition to the profit-sharing scheme, for associations and foundations that may receive donations giving entitlement to a tax reduction and for Workplace Assistance Establishments or Services (Ésat).
Who can benefit?
• Employees and agents of private employers and certain public institutions (EPICs* and EPAs** employing personnel under private law),
• Agency staff supplied to a company awarding the bonus to its employees,
• Disabled workers linked to an Ésat*** and beneficiaries of a contract of support and assistance through work.
The VSB does not replace any element of employee remuneration provided for by law, by a salary agreement, employment contract or practice in force in the company.
*Public Industrial and Commercial Establishment
**Public Administrative Establishment
***Workplace Assistance Establishment and Service
How often can the Value Sharing Bonus be paid?
Since 1 December 2023, it is now possible to pay 2 Value Sharing Bonuses each year, knowing that the bonus can always be paid in one instalment, or in several instalments, up to a maximum of once per quarter.
• Exemption from Income Tax (IR), General Social Contribution (CSG), Contribution for the Reimbursement of Social Debt (CRDS): If the bonus is paid between 1 July 2022 and 31 December 2023 to employees who received remuneration of less than three times the minimum wage (i.e. €59,231.91 for full-time employees) during the 12 months preceding its payment.
• The PPV will be exempt from social contributions.
• The PPV will be subject to the forfait social (flat-rate social charge) in the same way as the incentivisation bonus (intéressement).
Lastly, from 1 January 2024, no change for companies with fewer than 50 employees, until 31 December 2026. However, for other companies, it is the regime provided for employees above 3 times the minimum wage that will become the general rule and which will therefore also apply to employees earning less than 3 times the minimum wage. The bonus will therefore remain permanently exempt from social security contributions but, regardless of its amount, it will no longer be exempt from income tax or CSG/CRDS.
A company implements the bonus in 2023 for all employees, with no salary cap.
Tax and social security on the bonus paid in 2023 are as follows:
- For employees paid 3x minimum wage or more: the PPV is exempt from social contributions (up to the maximum bonus of €3,000 or €6,000), but subject to CSG/CRDS and income tax. If the company has 250 or more employees, it will also pay the forfait social (flat-rate social charge) on the exempt amount.
- For employees paid less than 3x minimum wage: the PPV is exempt from social contributions, CSG/CRDS and income tax (up to the maximum bonus of €3,000 or €6,000). The forfait social is not payable.
The bonus paid in 2024 will be taxable and subject to CSG/CRDS. It will be exempt from social contributions up to the maximum bonus of €3,000 or €6,000. However, the forfait social may be payable, depending on the size of the workforce
*Source: RF Paye
The amount of the VSB may be adjusted according to the beneficiaries according to their remuneration, their level of classification, their seniority in the company, their actual length of service during the past year or the working time provided for by their employment contract.
(1) Employer’s and employee’s social security contributions of legal or contractual origin, training contribution, apprenticeship tax and construction contribution.
(2) Per person, per year. €6,000 for companies with an incentivisation agreement (intéressement), companies with less than 50 employees voluntarily applying a profit-sharing scheme, certain associations and foundations, and disabled workers under a contract of support and assistance through work in ESAT (see our developments).
(3) No remuneration cap – exemption applies to all employees, including those paid more than 3x minimum wage.
(4) Workforce limit is the same as that applicable to the incentivisation scheme (intéressement).
How do you implement this bonus?
You can implement the PPV by unilateral decision (if you have a Social & Economic Committee, it must be informed) or by a company or group agreement concluded in accordance with the procedures for an interessement agreement.
2024 Value Sharing Act 2024: key points on the new scheme
Since 1 December 2023, the Value Sharing Act has introduced significant changes, applicable from 1 January 2024 for VSEs, SMEs and mid-caps.
The key points to remember are:
- Possible Bonuses: Companies can pay bonuses twice a year within the limits of the exemption ceilings (3,000 euros or 6,000 euros) and place them in an employee savings plan.
- Obligations for Companies with 11 to 50 Employees: These companies, which generate a net tax profit of at least 1% of turnover over 3 consecutive years, must offer one of the following schemes: profit-sharing bonus, incentive bonus, employer contribution to an employee savings plan (company savings plan or collective retirement savings plan), or value sharing bonus (VSB).
- Companies with more than 50 employees: They must enter into negotiations to define the terms of payment of a profit-sharing or incentive supplement, or set up a value-sharing scheme.
Find out all about the provisions you need to know in our dedicated Guide