How do you set up an inter-company employee savings plan (PEI or PER)?

If you work as a self-employed professional, if you run a sole proprietorship, a limited liability company, etc., you can set up an inter-company collective savings plan (PEI or PERECOI ex PERCOI) in accordance with article L. 3333-2 of the French Labor Code. These two employee savings plans, which offer tax and social security benefits, can be combined.

PEI (inter-company savings plan) features

The inter-company savings plan is very similar to the company savings plan (PEE). The main difference is that it is set up between several companies, either on a professional level (depending on the branch of activity), or on a geographical level (an employment area). It can also combine these two criteria.

The PEI enables small businesses to save together, by pooling the costs of setting up and running a savings plan. A PEI must be accompanied by assistance to enable beneficiaries to build up a securities portfolio. This assistance may, for example, take the form of the payment of account management fees.

The PEI is an optional medium-term savings scheme that can be set up as soon as the company employs one employee (excluding the manager). In companies with fewer than 100 employees, the employer can also benefit from this savings plan. The sums invested in a PEI are frozen for 5 years, except in the case of recognized early release.

This plan can be fed by :

  • voluntary payments by employees, up to a maximum of 25% of their annual income
  • income from this investment
  • profit-sharing and incentive schemes
  • monetized rights from a CET (Time Savings Account)
  • sums transferred from another individual or group PER plan

The employer can top up the employee's contribution, or "abondement", up to a limit of 3 times the total amount paid in by the beneficiary.

How do I set up an IEP?

A PEI cannot be set up on the basis of a company's unilateral decision, but requires the conclusion of an agreement between one or more representative trade union organizations and employers' organizations. This agreement can be concluded at the professional level.

Set-up procedures vary depending on whether the PEI is set up between several individual companies or at the level of an industry.

PEI between several individually named companies

In this case, the PEI can be set up after a company agreement has been signed:

  • under the conditions of ordinary collective bargaining law; or
  • or within the CSE
  • or by ratification of the project by two-thirds of the employees of each company concerned

While the method of approval may differ from one company to another, all companies must approve the agreement in identical terms.

PEI set up at the level of a geographical area

The installation conditions are the same as those mentioned above.

PEI set up at industry level

In this configuration, the PEI can only be set up by means of a collective agreement, which means that it must meet with the assent of one or more representative employee trade union organizations at industry level, and one or more employer trade union organizations.

PERECOI (formerly PERCOI) features

The PERCOI was an inter-company collective retirement savings plan that enabled employees to build up a retirement supplement in the form of capital or an annuity. Since October 1, 2020 with the arrival of the PACTE law, this plan is no longer marketed, but has been replaced by the PERECOI (inter-company collective PER). However, PERCOI that were already open continue to operate and payments are still possible.

The PERECOI has three feed compartments:

  • Voluntary employee contributions
  • Employee savings schemes (profit-sharing, matching contributions, CET)
  • Compulsory employee and employer contributions

The sums in a PERECOI are unavailable until retirement. They are then paid out in the form of a lump sum or a life annuity, provided the capital balance is sufficient. It is also possible to choose a lump-sum payment and an annuity.

Good to know: in certain circumstances, sums can be released in advance (acquisition of a principal residence, end of unemployment benefit entitlement, disability, death, cessation of self-employment following judicial liquidation, over-indebtedness).

How to set up a PERECOI (ex PERCOI)?

This inter-company collective retirement savings plan can be set up in the same way as a PEI.