At what age can you start a company?

Verified 19 April 2024 - Directorate of Legal and Administrative Information (Prime Minister), Ministry of Justice

A minor can start a company from the age of 16. Depending on whether he is enfranchised or not, his rights are different.

Under 16 years of age or over without emancipation

A non-emancipated minor aged between 16 and 18 years could set up a company under certain conditions. However, he cannot carry out all the management acts of his company.

The minor must respect the 3 conditions following:

  • At least 16 years old
  • Have permission from their legal administrator(s)
  • Create a business with a unique partner

Minimum age of the minor

A non-emancipated minor must have at least 16 years to create a company.

Requirement for authorization from legal administrators

This is the authorization given by the parents or the guardian or the family council.

This authorization shall take one of the following forms:

  • Or of a written statement signed by the parents and the minor.
  • Either of an act notarial

The authorization shall detail the administrative acts that the minor can accomplish. This includes opening a bank account or signing insurance contracts

The acts of disposition shall be prohibited to the unemancipated minor. They may be performed only by the minor's parents or by the guardian with the authorization of the guardianship judge. These include buying or selling a business or taking out a bank loan.

Please note

If the minor is under guardianship, permission to create a company is given by the family council.

Creating a Single Partner business

The miner can create only one single partner business.

Alone the following legal forms of business are permitted:

  • Single Member Limited Liability company (EURL), i.e. a sole partner LLC
  • Single member simplified share business (SASU), i.e. a single member SAS

These are the only 2 types of businesses allowed. Individual business A minor therefore cannot set up a micro-company or an ADR.


For more information, you can refer to the fact sheets dedicated to the EURL and to the SASU.

A minor non-emancipated cannot perform activities that require trader .

It must be major (or emancipated minor with a license to trade) to register as a trader in the Trade and business Register (TBR) and the National company Register (NBR).

A non-emancipated minor may exercise activities which do not require a specific professional qualification or diploma. Examples of such activities include:

  • Certain agricultural activities (such as domestic animal husbandry)
  • Some artisanal activities (IT convenience store, florist, etc.)
  • Certain liberal professions (Internet professions, trainers, etc.)

Please note

Where the exercise of an activity requires a particular training or diploma, the non-enfranchised minor must comply with them. In practice, it does deprives people of many regulated activities. For example, to carry out the activity of taxi driver, you must hold a driving license (category B) for 3 years minimum (or 2 years in the case of accompanied driving).

Emancipated minor

The emancipation of minors (who must be 16 years of age) is obtained in one of the following ways:

  • Automatically by marriage
  • By decision of the guardianship judge : either at the request of his or her parents or at the request of the family council.

Please note

The minor must be 16 years of age (ie 16 years and 1 day) so that the request can be made.

A minor emancipated may, from the age of 16:

  • Individual business Create a new. The emancipated minor may be an individual entrepreneur, including micro-entrepreneur unlike a non-emancipated minor. He may work as a craftsman or as a liberal if he fulfills the specific conditions for a diploma or professional qualification. However, in order to be a trader, he must have obtained authorization to carry on a commercial activity.
  • Create a business and become a partner of a commercial business (SARL, SA, LOCK) or a limited partner of a SCS or a SCA.


The associates of a CNS, and the general partners of a SCS or a SCA, must have the status of trader.

Individual business The emancipated minor must obtain the status of a trader in order to start or carry out his commercial activity in He must also have the status of merchant to be associated with a CNS, or general partner of a SCS or a SCA.

Please note

An emancipated minor may be micro-entrepreneur unlike a non-emancipated minor.

The emancipated minor must have the status of a trader to be associated with a CNS: titleContent or general partner in a SCS: titleContent or a SCA: titleContent. It's called “commercial capacity”.

Minors may obtain authorization to trade:

  • Either the guardianship judge, at the time of the emancipation decision
  • The President of the Court of Justice if he has already been enfranchised
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