Setting up a Social and Economic Committee (“Comité Social et Economique” or “CSE”).

Under French law, a company has to set up a CSE when it employs at least 11 employees during 12 consecutive months.

  • How to assess this threshold

The company has to take into account every employee working under a permanent employment contract.

It also has, under certain conditions, to take into account fixed-term and temporary employment contracts, or employees made available to the company by an external company who are present on the premises of the user company and have worked there for at least one year.

These persons are taken into account on a pro rata basis according to:

  • the time they are present during the year;
  • their working time.

An employee with a full-time permanent employment contract therefore counts for one person.

  • How to organize the professional elections

 The company has to:

  • Inform the employees about the electoral process and the date of the election;
  • Invite trade unions to negotiate an agreement on the election process.

The election process is determined by such an agreement, if concluded, or unilaterally set by the employer in default.

The whole process takes approximately one month.

  • Number of employee representatives to elect

The CSE is composed of full and alternate members.

The number of CSE members depends on the company’s workforce (for instance 2 full members and 2 alternate members when the company has between 25 and 49 employees).

  • Who can be elected

To stand for election, the employee must meet the following 4 conditions:

  • be at least 18 years old
  • have worked in the company for at least 1 year
  • not be the spouse, partner, cohabitant, parent or descendant, person related by marriage and not by blood (for example, brother-in-law, mother-in-law) of the employer
  • not have been convicted of a crime that would disqualify them from being an elector and therefore from being elected