SCI Immobiliere

A Société Civile immobilière – SCI – is essentially a fully incorporated company with a registered office in France, that is widely used in property – real estate -transactions in France.

SCI Immobiliere – It is a separate legal entity recognised under the French Civil code and has a separate identity to that of the shareholders, who as implied own shares in the company.

The SCI is used by families and also by groups of friends/professionals to minimise the effects of Frances’ draconian inheritance laws, also by groups of people who by pooling their resources can afford a property of choice.

The registered office of the SCI company can be the property itself.

The SCI would own the property in question and as a company, the SCI, is itself owned by shareholders,as previously stated,  in most cases, family members. The shareholders can be resident or non-resident in France. There should be a minimum of 2 shareholders, there is no restriction on minimum capital to capitalise the company and there is no restriction upon the nationality of the shareholders.

It is very important that the tax consequences of a purchase through a Société Civile immobilière – SCI – be analysed in respect of the potential shareholders tax liabilities having regard to  tax treaties between France and the home country before going ahead with any purchase.
The type of SCI which would be used would be a property holding company having as its object the acquisition, management and construction development of buildings and land.
There are several types of SCI
– SCI Construction vente (to build property and and sell)
– SCI with fixed capital
-SCI with variable capitable – more flexible and more generally recommended.

The company is a non-trading entity and does not have limited liability, the members being responsible for all the debts of the company without limit in proportion to their shareholdings.

The company should not carry out any commercial activity. The content of the statuts (memorandum and articles of association) are negotiable on most points and include restrictions on the transfer of the shares.

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