France is located in the western part of Europe and borders Belgium, Luxembourg, Germany, Switzerland, Italy and Spain. It is famed for its fashion houses, classical art museums including the Louvre and monuments like the Eiffel Tower. The country is also renowned for its wines and sophisticated cuisine. Lascaux’s ancient cave drawings, Lyon’s Roman theater and the vast Palace of Versailles attest to its rich history.
Asylum may be granted according to the rules of the Geneva convention, that Someone is persecuted in his/her country due to race, religion, nationality, belonging to a social group or due to his/her political opinions. Asylum may also be granted by reference to the 1946 French Constitution based upon persecution due to actions in favour of freedom
Who is eligible to apply asylum:
Applying for asylum in France one has to register to the Prefecture before being granted the right to apply to asylum. Unless the prefecture finds out that the applicant:
- has already applied for asylum in another EU country (Dublin Ruling);
- is from a country listed as a safe country free from persecution by the CNDA;
- is a threat to French Government or society; and/or has major criminal record;
The prefecture will then issue a temporary authorization to reside in France (APS) within a maximum of 15 days after the applicant’s visit, allowing them the right to reside in France for a month renewable and apply for asylum within the next 21 days.
If the prefecture refuses the right to stay in France on one of the grounds quoted above – and so refuses the right for the applicant to apply for asylum to the OFPRA, a person’s options to apply to asylum in France will be restricted. If the reason for refusal is because of the application being handled by another EU country the applicant is not allowed to apply for asylum in France at this stage. If the transfer to the country responsible has not happened in the next six months, France becomes then responsible of the asylum seeker’s application.
How to apply?
Outside France person can apply for a long term visa on the grounds that they are at a French embassy outside of France. Even though most applications are rejected, it is an option to consider if someone has a strong case to prove (official documents, solid proof that they have suffered (or fear) persecution on account of race, religion, nationality, belonging to a group or political opinion). If denied people can contest the refusal of the visa at the Tribunal Administrative Nantes.
If asylum seekers are already in France, they must apply by visiting the Prefecture, the regional institution representing the French State in each of France’s regions, with the right documents in hand. At the Prefecture, each person will be given a form to fill out to go along with that person’s administrative documents. Additionally, the applicant’s biometric data will be taken – to verify that they have not already claimed asylum in another European country.
How long does the procedure take?
It takes 16 months to be granted refugee status in France. The new legislation aims to reduce this process to 9 months’ maximum by 2017. The new legislation grants the right to work to asylum seekers after 9 months’ even if no decision has been taken on their application by the OFPRA.
Before you can get a French worker visa, you must find a job. Your employer then applies for a work visa on your behalf, at their local Ministry of Labor. The process is managed regionally. The time processes takes can vary.
Once this initial stage of application is approved, it's passed to the authorities for immigration who then contacts persons local French embassy in his/her home country. It's then his/her responsibility to go to embassy and complete the application process in person.
Once your application has been received, it can take anywhere from around about three weeks up to a couple of months to complete the process depending on your nationality, visa type and local embassy procedures. You can’t start the process more than three months before you intend to travel to France
Categories of Employment:
‘Skill and talents’ permit
If you are an executive, independent professional or employee who, in the eyes of the French authorities, has the potential to make a ‘significant contribution’ to the French economy, especially in intellectual, scientific, cultural, sporting or humanitarian fields, and you’ll be involved in a specific project, then you can apply for a three-year, renewable, ‘skills and expertise’ residence permit
You have to:
- provide documentation, including a detailed CV/resume, information about the work you’ll be involved with, and evidence of sufficient funding (as determined by the French authorities).
- meet other criteria as set out by the Commission Nationale des Competences et Talents,
- show a contract approved by the DIRECCTE (if an employee, it should be arranged by your employer).
If you are issued with this permit, then your family members (spouse and minor children) will be issued with a vie privée et familiale card, which allows your spouse to work legally in France.
EU Blue Card for highly skilled/educated workers
This is a one- to three-year residence/work permit for highly skilled workers. To be eligible, you must have a diploma/degree attesting to three years of higher education or five years’ professional experience in a specific field, a work contract for at least a year, and earn a monthly salary of at least 1.5 times the French average gross annual salary (around EUR 2,105/month). You have to work in the field for which you were admitted to the scheme for two years; then you can take on any highly qualified work.
After 18 months in France, you can work in other EU countries. After five years, you’re eligible for the renewable, 10-year, long-term EC residence card. Family members can get a private and family life residence permit, allowing them to work and after five years, they too are eligible for the long-term EC resident card. They are exempt from the CAI requirement.
Employees on assignment (sometimes called ‘expatriate employee’) permit
If you have been working for at least three months in a company outside France and are seconded to one of your employer’s companies based in France or another company in the same group, and will be earning 1.5 times the minimum wage (around EUR 2,105/month), then you are eligible to apply for this permit, which is valid for three years and then renewable.
Your spouse can join you on this permit but is not allowed to work until he or she has been in France for six months and has been granted a vie privée et familiale permit. If you are a senior manager, then you can get a version of the permit that allows your family to come with you at the outset, and for your spouse to work.
‘Exceptional economic contribution’ permit
Foreign investors investing large sums of money or planning to create more than 50 jobs are eligible for a 10-year residence permit. Your spouse and minor children also get the same rights.
If you have a master’s degree or above, and you are going to be carrying out research or teaching at university level, then you are eligible for temporary ‘scientific activity’ residence permit. This is valid for one year but can be renewed yearly for up to four years.
You need to provide evidence of your status and duration of the research work, and also have a ‘hosting agreement’ from a recognized scientific organization or university. Your spouse and family are entitled to a residence permit marked vie privée et familiale.
Seasonal workers permit
If you are employed with a seasonal contract lasting more than three months, then you are eligible for a residence permit valid for three years, which is renewable for further three-year periods. It allows you to work in seasonal employment for a maximum of 6 months out of every 12. You are only allowed to stay in France for six months each year, with your normal residence outside of France, although you are allowed to have several contracts in succession, provided that you do not exceed six months out of one year in total. Your family are not allowed to join you.
If you’re between 17 and 30 and want to work as an au pair with a French host family, your host family need to organize an au pair contract (accord de placement) and get it approved by the DIRECCTE. You also have to have a letter of admission to a language school specifying when you’ll be attending (10 hours/week minimum) before you can get your visa.
- Valid passport (this must have been issued in the last ten years and last until past the point that your visa runs out)
- Complete and signed application and residence forms
- Passport signed photos
- You might have to show evidence of your travel plans including pre booked return flights, depending on the visa type you're applying for
- Application fee and in some cases a stamped and self-addressed envelope
Your embassy might have different requirements, so check when you make an appointment.
Approximately 108 $.
If Somebody has a relative who is a EU/EEA/Swiss citizen living in France, they are allowed to join them even if they are not from one of those countries themselves.
Relatives of other countries:
Spouses and minor children can apply to join family members who are not EU/EEA/Swiss citizens, living in France, under the following conditions:
- The family member you are going to join must be living in France for at least one year and hold a valid residence permit.
- Your relative must have adequate finances (an amount equal to the monthly minimum wage – EUR 1,445).
- There must be enough room for you: French standards are 16sqm for a couple, and 9sqm per extra person.
Your relative must go in person to the offices of the Direction départementale des affaires sanitaires et sociales (DDASS), which is the local medical and social services department or the OFII office, to file an application. He or she may be asked for proof of financial stability and the accommodation may be inspected.
If the application is successful, you can join your relative but you will need to get a long-stay visa (from the embassy/consulate in your home country, valid for one year, which then acts as a residence card. The visa is free of charge. You have to register with the local branch of the OFII within two months of arriving in France. If you are staying for longer than a year, then you need to apply for a residence card (carte de séjour);
If your relative holds a residence permit marked 'skills and talents', 'employee on assignment', 'research scientist' or an EU Blue Card, your family is automatically granted a 'private family' and 'Family life' residence permit at the same time, for the duration of the spouse’s stay, allowing your family to work without a permit.
Families of those who have come to France to invest at least EUR 10 million and create at least 50 jobs are granted a 10-year residence permit for exceptional economic contribution.
Relatives of French nationals
You can join a family member living in France if you are:
- married to a French national (the marriage must have been entered into the French Civil Register if you married abroad), and you’re still together.
- the parent of a French minor child living in France and you have been contributing to his/her support and education for at least a year.
- the foreign child of French nationals and are under 21 or dependent on your parents.
- the dependent parent of an adult French national or spouse.
Relatives of asylum seekers
If your relative has been granted refugee status, you can be reunited in France if you are the spouse (married before the refugee status was granted) or a minor child (up to the age of 19).
Located in the continent of Europe, France shares land borders with 8 countries: Germany, Italy, Switzerland, Andorra, Belgium, Luxembourg, Monaco, Spain
Euro (EUR)[VII] CFP franc (XPF)[VIII]
Unitary semi presidential republic
Central European Time (UTC+1), Summer (DST) Central European Summer Time[X] (UTC+2)
Reasons to choose France?
- No physical residency requirements;
- Inclusion of dependent children up to the age of 28;
- No minimum level of education required;
- No managerial experience required;
- Visa-free travel to over 120 countries;
- No taxes for non-residents;
- Dominica recognizes dual citizenship, so you can retain your current nationality.
- Interview not mandatory;
Visa-Free/Visa-on-arrival: Albania, American Samoa, Anguilla, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Armenia, Aruba, Austria, Bahamas, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belarus, Belgium, Belize, Bermuda, Bolivia, Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Botswana, Brazil, British Virgin Islands, Brunei, Bulgaria, Burkina Faso, Cambodia, Cape Verde, Cayman Islands, Chile, Colombia, Comoros, Cook Islands, Costa Rica, Croatia, Curaçao, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Djibouti, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, El Salvador, Estonia, Ethiopia, Falkland Islands (Malvinas), Fiji, Finland, French Guiana, French Polynesia, Gambia, Georgia, Germany, Gibraltar, Greece, Grenada, Guadeloupe, Guatemala, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, Hong Kong, Hungary, Iceland, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kiribati, Kosovo, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Laos, Latvia, Lebanon, Lesotho, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Macau, Macedonia, Madagascar, Malawi, Malaysia, Maldives, Malta, Marshall Islands, Martinique, Mauritania, Mauritius, Mayotte, Mexico, Micronesia, Moldova, Montenegro, Montserrat, Morocco, Mozambique, Namibia, Nepal, Netherlands, New Caledonia, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Niue, Norway, Oman, Palau, Panama, Papua New Guinea, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, Romania, Réunion, Saint Barthélemy, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Martin (French part), Saint Pierre and Miquelon, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Samoa, Sao Tome and Principe, Senegal, Serbia, Seychelles, Singapore, Sint Maarten (Dutch part), Slovakia, Slovenia, Solomon Islands, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Suriname, Swaziland, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Tajikistan, Tanzania, Thailand, Timor-Leste, Togo, Tonga, Trinidad and Tobago, Tunisia, Turkey, Turks and Caicos Islands, Tuvalu, Uganda, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, Uruguay, Vanuatu, Venezuela, Vietnam, Wallis and Futuna, Zambia, Zimbabwe
Electronic Authorization: Australia, Canada, Gabon, Guam, India, Kenya, Myanmar, Norfolk Island, Northern Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico, Sri Lanka, U.S. Virgin Islands, United States
Visa required prior to arrival: Afghanistan, Algeria, Angola, Azerbaijan, Benin, Bhutan, Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, China, Congo Republic, Cuba, Côte d'Ivoire, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Liberia, Mali, Mongolia, Nauru, Niger, Nigeria, North Korea, Pakistan, Russia, Rwanda, Saudi Arabia, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, Syria, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Yemen
Entry denied: Libya