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Are you, or do you want to become, a French resident?

January 1, 2022

You arrived before 1st January 2021:

-         You should have applied for, and received, a Withdrawal Agreement Residence Permit (WARP). In that case, you have nothing to do until that card reaches its expiry date.

-         If you have applied for a WARP but have not yet received it, you must keep your certificate of application (from your initial email confirmation) and continue the application process.

-         If you have not had a response to your WARP application, check your email and spam folder, and contact your prefecture. You can also email the Interior Ministry:  contact-brexit@interieur.gouv.fr. Keep copies of your correspondence. Respond promptly to requests to help prefectures process yourapplication quickly.

-         If you have not yet applied:

         o  You can still apply for a WARP if you can demonstrate:

               §  You turned 18 after 4th October 2021. You have 12 months from your 18th birthday to begin your application. Note that if you turned 18 before the 4th October 2021, the French authorities assume that you should have started your application on line before that site closed down and so you may have to demonstrate why you did not begin your application before 4th October 2021.

               §  You can prove that you have not already applied for your WARP due “legitimate reasons” (e.g., reasons relating to your medical condition, force majeure, etc.). Examples of what may be accepted are not readily available, and will probably be quite rare.

           o  If you do not meet any of the above criteria, you can only remain in France legally for three months from 1st January 2022. However, you can begin an application for a “common law” residence permit, available to non-EU citizens wishing to reside in France. For details, see the section on what to do if you arrived in France after 1st January 2020?

           o  In both cases, your application must be made at your local Préfecture as the on-line application site has been closed since 4th October 2021

You arrived after 31st December 2020:

-         You are joining your family members already settled in France, ie who arrived before 1st January 2021 and already have a WARP, or who are entitled to French residency as they are also French or other EU state nationals.

          o  A family member is defined for this purpose as:

               §  direct descendant under the age of 21 or dependent,

               §  dependent direct ascendant,

               § spouse, spouse's dependent direct ascendant or descendant,

               §  registered partner (PACS or foreign registered partner (PACS or foreign equivalent) and cohabitee who can demonstrate a durable and proven relationship. These may be both British nationals and third country nationals.

               §  the family, matrimonial, partnership or cohabitation relationship must have been in place by 31 December 2020 at the latest

           o  In this case, you should apply for a WARP at your local Préfecture not later than three months after your arrival in France, and the application process should follow that applicable to British National who arrived in France before 1st January 2021.

-         You arrive in France with the intention to become a French resident, and that arrival is after 31st December 2020 and you have no familial links to a British national who established their French residency before that date.

           a.       Your residency status is the same as for any third-country (ie non EU country) national. You are entitled to remain in the EU (including France) as a visitor, ie without permission to work, for a maximum of 90 days in any 180 day period.

           b.       To remain in France for more than 90 days and to work, you must apply for a residence permit (“carte de séjour”, not “carte de resident”) before the end of that 90-day period at your local Préfecture.

           c.       If your application is accepted, the receipt obtained on filing your application allows you to remain in France while your permit is being processed.

           d.       The cases in which a residence permit can be requested are:

                     i.     You are employed to work in France, and the nature of your position allows you to obtain a residence permit:

                            1.       You wish to work in France and your position qualifies for a “Talent passport” - the position is highly qualified, have an employment contract more than 12 months duration, you have at least a BA degree or five years professional experience and the position has a gross salary of at least €53,836.50 a year.

                            2.       You are seconded to a French subsidiary of a group for which you have been working for at least 3 months, you have an employment contract with the French subsidiary and your gross salary is at least €38,148 a year

                            3.       You hold a university diploma of Masters level or higher, obtained at a French university, you have an employment contract of at least 3 months with a French company and your gross salary is at least €38,148 a year

                            4.       You have been recruited by a company classified as an Innovative Young Entreprise (JEI), you have an employment contract of at least 3 months with that company, you will be working in the R&D team and your gross salary is at least €38,148 a year

                            5.       Your employer is recognised by the French Government as qualifying for a French Tech visa for employment, ), you have an employment contract of at least 3 months with that company, you will be working in the social, economic, commercial or international development or R&D team and your gross salary is at least €38,148 a year

                            6.       You must remain in the employment that enabled you to obtain this category of residence permit for the first two years of its validity

                    ii.     You wish to work in France and your position does not qualify under the categories described above:

                            1.       Your prospective employer must apply for authorisation from the DIRECCTE and you must have an employment contract with that employer. If that contract is for a fixed term of less than 12 months, the residence permit will be for that term only

                   iii.     You are coming to France as a student

                            1.       You must first obtain a one-year student visa

                            2.       Between 4 and 2 months before the expiry of the visa you can apply for a student residence permit if your studies are for more than one year

                            3.       Your School or University will almost certainly be able to assist with these applications

                   iv.     You wish to remain in France but not to work. In this case a Visitor’s Residence permit can be requested.

                            1.       This requires a statement that you will not take employment in France and that you have enough resources to be equivalent to a net monthly income of €1.258 per month for a period of at least one year.

                            2.       This permit is for one year, but is renewable

                    v.     You wish to seek employment or create your own business in France

                            1.       You are at the start of your career and you have studied in France

                                      a.       You must have already held a student residence permit

                                      b.       You have obtained a Masters degree or equivalent

                            2.       You intend to move to France and on arrival create a business (gites, consultancy, etc.) to support yourself financially:

                                      a.       You must apply for a “professional/entrepreneur” long stay visa

                                      b.       This visa is valid for one year – to continue your activity for longer you must apply for the “professional/entrepreneur” residence permit before the visa expires

                                      c.       If you want to set up a new business, you must be able to demonstrate the economic viability of your project and demonstrate that you have sufficient financial resources during the start-up period i.e. the equivalent of the minimum legal wage in France for a full-time worker

                                      d.       This is a particularly complex process, and to date there are few examples of British citizens who have successfully applied for the relevant permits to start a business in France, so we strongly recommend that, before you make any commitments to a move to France, you consult the French Consulate in London and consider contacting a professional relocations specialist.

                                      e.       You may also wish to use the French Foreign Office consular site which has a "Visa Wizard" simulation template in which you can input details of your situation so that you can find out what is required to apply for a visa or residence permit https://france-visas.gouv.fr/en/web/france-visas/ai-je-besoin-d-un-visa?p_p_id=NeedVisaApplication_WAR_fvfoportalvisasportlet&p_p_lifecycle=0&_NeedVisaApplication_WAR_fvfoportalvisasportlet_implicitModel=true