In France, there is an employment status referred to as “intermittent entertainers” or “casual workers” that is specific to the music industry. Now, you may ask yourself, what does this status really mean? How do artists register and which artist can apply for it? What are the advantages and disadvantages of the intermittent status? This article is the answer to all of your questions!
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1. What is an intermittent entertainer?
2. How to register with the Employment Office and access your intermittence rights?
3. How to declare a fee?
4. How do you calculate the salary of an intermittent entertainer?
5. Can you be both an auto-entrepreneur and an intermittent worker?
6. Why can’t all artists be intermittent entertainers?
7. In conclusion …
We commonly refer to it as a status, but technically it is an unemployment insurance scheme. An intermittent entertainer is considered as a job seeker and is compensated between their different work contracts. Intermittent entertainers or casual workers are often paid by different employers and often hired on temporary contracts. These temporary or short-term contracts do not give the right to a bonus but rather to an indemnity paid directly by the Employment Office.
There are two categories of intermittent workers in the entertainment industry:
- Performing artists, who are protected by appendix 10
- Stage technicians and workers who are hired for a limited amount of time for an individual project; they are protected by appendix 8
The remuneration of the intermittent artist is made through intermittent fees or hourly rates. As an artist, you have certainly noticed on your contracts that you are most often paid by a fee, except for rehearsals which are generally counted in number of hours.
To obtain the status of “intermittent entertainer”, you must have worked at least 507 hours over the last 10 months from the end of your last contract in your artistic field.
If we count in fees, one intermittent fee represents 12 hours, so we need to count at least 43 fees to cover the statutory 507 hours.
Therefore, it is necessary to have a high level of activity that falls under the specific scheme of intermittent entertainment to be able to claim the status. Moreover, the activities carried out as an auto-entrepreneur are not counted in the calculation of the remuneration linked to the intermittence.
The advantage of being an intermittent performer is that you can be compensated by the Employment Office during your periods of inactivity, i.e. between your various short-term contracts – a bit like paid vacations for permanent contracts. There is a branch of the Employment Office dedicated to the entertainment industry that takes care of the indemnities but also helps artists and technicians to find contracts or employment opportunities within the music industry.
The requirements for becoming an intermittent performer and registering with the Employment Office:
- You must have worked in one or more companies approved by the Employment Office for a minimum of 507 hours during the last 319 days
- The last employment contract must have come to an end. The end date of the last contract corresponds to the expiration date, i.e. the start date of the compensation
- You must be registered as a job seeker and therefore not have another job at the same time
- As for the other branches of the Employment Office, you must be effectively and permanently looking for work
By registering with the Employment Office in this context, you acquire rights for one year.
You can estimate your rights as a performing artist or technician directly on the Employment Office website.
At the end of each contract as a intermittent performer, you will receive a certificate from your employer that specifies the duration of your work in hours or in the form of fees. You must be registered as an intermittent employee and your employer must declare your fee for you.
The Employment Office will take into account a maximum of 28 fees per month to calculate your indemnity rate, but you can definitely do more if you have periods of high activity.
The hourly wage of the entertainer is at least equal to the SMIC, i.e. 10.57€ gross per hour in 2022 and may vary according to the decisions of the collective agreements.
Concerning the fees, the minimum is fixed at 160€ per session, i.e. 12 hours. If an artist delivers a performance of less than 12 hours but has been paid at least 160€, it is possible to declare it as an intermittent fee.
It is possible to combine the two statuses in certain cases. The main condition is that you must use both statuses for two different activities. You have to keep in mind that in the framework of intermittent entertainment, you are considered as an employee whereas for the self-employment, you are independent. For example, you can use your intermittent entertainment status to receive the payments for your concerts and use your self-employment status to sell musical instruments or give music lessons.
You cannot have both statuses and divide your fees that fall under the intermittent entertainment status between the statuses.
If you obtain both statuses, you must remember to declare your income to both the Employment Office and the URSSAF. The disadvantage of combining the statuses of auto-entrepreneur and intermittent entertainer is that the turnover of your auto-enterprise is included in the calculation of your income and can reduce your intermittent entertainer benefits. In fact, the Employment Office calculates the number of hours worked in your self-employed activity on the basis of the SMIC (minimum wage), which can amount to a lot of hours depending on your turnover.
In fact, it is quite rare, even complicated to reach the 507 hours only with artists’ performances like DJ sets, concerts, … Very often, the artists who are intermittent entertainers also have additional skills such as editing or working as a technician. If you give lessons in your field in an approved establishment, these hours can also be counted in the calculation of the intermittence.
Basically, you have to be very invested in your artistic field and have many skills to be able to find a succession of contracts and make a living without a job on the side. For some, it’s the opportunity to work on different projects. For others, it can be a difficult situation and not necessarily beneficial because it’s impossible to hold down a job.
There are many requirements to meet in order to qualify for the “intermittent entertainer” status and not all artists are suited to it. If you are a full-time artist and you have a lot of resources in your profession that you can use to earn a living, this status can be interesting for you and allow you to receive allowances between your contracts. On the other hand, the status of ” intermittent entertainer “ may not be for you if you are just starting out in the music industry or if you don’t have much time to devote to it.
– Translated by Betty Gonzalez –