The private copying levy on refurbished smartphones challenged by the Council of State

This is a small victory for sellers of refurbished mobiles: the establishment of the private copying levy on refurbished smartphones has been challenged by the Council of State, according to information obtained by the media l’Informé.

A controversial double taxation

Designed to fund the coffers of the cultural sector, the private copying levy is a tax of a few euros added to the price of all devices or multimedia supports that can store music or films. Codified in article L122-5 of the Intellectual Property Code, this fee had been extended to refurbished devices in mid-2021not without causing some controversy.

Many refurbished specialists have indeed spoken out against this decision, denounced in turn as “jeopardizing the French sector“reconditioned and as a mechanism that would accentuate the”unfair competition“already carried out by certain foreign players who are not always very concerned about the French tax model.

No retroactivity

Since its entry into force, French refurbishers have denounced a double taxation mechanism, since the mobile refurbished by specialists had already been subject to the private copying fee for the first time when it was put on the market. Manufacturers also deplored the rise in prices induced by the extension of this tax, which mechanically made the reconditioned sector less attractive. A hard pill to swallow for a law supposed to reduce the environmental footprint of digital in France. Some majority elected even joined the critics concert.

Still, it was not really political pressure that got the better of private copying on refurbished smartphones, but a defect in form when it was put in place. The scale had indeed been voted by an incomplete commission. This cancellation will take place on February 1, 2023 and will not be retroactive. In other words, those who have already paid the fee will not be reimbursed.

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