View over the rooftops of Paris.
Thibault Camus / AP / SIPA
The city of Paris won on Thursday an important victory against rental platforms like Airbnb: the Court of Cassation ruled that its regulations comply with European law, "proportionate" and justified to fight against the shortage of rental accommodation .
This decision will allow the French capital to resume legal proceedings - which were hitherto suspended pending this clarification from the Court of Cassation - against 420 donors, from whom it claims on average 50,000 euros, or a total of 21 million euros in fines.
This case is very followed by European metropolises, faced like Paris with a housing shortage, which wanted to legislate to better regulate tourist rentals on platforms such as Airbnb or Abritel / Homeaway.
The Court of Cassation has validated the very restrictive mechanism known as "compensation": an authorization is issued to the owner wishing to dedicate a second home to short-term tourist rental, only if he buys a commercial premises of equivalent surface - or even double in certain areas -, to transform it into a dwelling, in order to compensate for the “loss of accommodation”.
"A five-year battle before the courts"
"Total victory for the City of Paris against Airbnb and fraudsters who rented their accommodation illegally: our regulatory tools are recognized as compliant with European law!"
A five-year battle before the courts, ”rejoiced in a tweet the housing assistant (PCF) of Anne Hidalgo, Ian Brossat.
For Airbnb, which recalls that it is “not a stakeholder in this case”, this decision only concerns “a minority of guests renting their second home in furnished tourist accommodation”, while most “renting their main residence”.
In 2018, the Court of Cassation, seized by two owners using Airbnb fined 40,000 euros for rentals without the prior authorization of the town hall, turned to the Court of Justice of the European Union based in Luxembourg to find out if the French legislation governing the rental of second homes on Airbnb complies with European regulations.
On September 22, 2020, the latter responded positively, but referred to the French courts to examine in more detail the compensation mechanisms put in place by the cities.
Airbnb: European justice validates French law, which subjects tourist rentals to validation
Paris city hall
Court of Cassation