I am a French citizen and I'm negotiating with my company to work as a digital nomad for the next years. This means that I would move from country to country every 3 months to 1 year.

My company has been really supportive and looked into the administrative details, but we're stuck on the social security aspect.

Since I will not technically live in France, we're unsure whether I can have the French “sécurité sociale” or if I must pay for something else such as “caisse des français à l'étranger” to keep my health insurance and build up my future pension.

What are my options?

  • 3
    Do you want it or not? I.e. is your question “Is it mandatory for my France-based employer to pay it?” or “Can I have health insurance and build up a retirement pension while living abroad?” Also, just to confirm, you would have a work contract with a French employer, correct?
    – Gala
    Apr 3, 2014 at 7:24
  • I think most people in that situation work as contractors or freelance. It's much easier for the client but of course, you're on your own when it comes to figuring out what law applies, taking care of health insurance, etc.
    – Gala
    Apr 3, 2014 at 8:11
  • 1
    Hi Gael, yes I would have a French work contract with my employer. I do want both health insurance and a retirement pension.
    – David
    Apr 3, 2014 at 9:18
  • Unfortunately I don't have experience with that particular situation so I'm unable to offer an answer but I tried to clarify the question a little. Did you try to contact the CFE?
    – Gala
    Apr 4, 2014 at 5:12

1 Answer 1


In the end, we chose a "détachement" solution under which I am still covered by French social security.

  • 1
    Détachement works in this situation, but I hope we could have a dedicated status for digital nomads as more and more people will be able to use this status. However, about the time of your détachement, the problem will come from the (private) insurances that seems to limit your stay to one year. I'm in the same situation than you, but as my employer don't send me to Laos as we don't have any business there, I'm contractually forced to buy a private expatriate insurance. As this kind of insurance is most of the time paid by companies, it's really very expensive.
    – smonff
    May 11, 2014 at 12:37

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