top of page

Moving to France from the UK after Brexit

Updated: Sep 9, 2022


The situation for British citizens migrating to France has evolved as a result of Brexit. We describe the changes that have taken place for both new British expats and those who have been living in France for some time.


Although it has left the EU, the United Kingdom continues to have a robust connection with its neighboring France, particularly regarding the movement of people between the two nations. There are around 148,000 Britons now residing in France, while the nation welcomes over 10 million tourists annually.


However, as a result of Brexit, traveling to, relocating to, or working in France is now a different experience than it was before. Following the effective date of the Withdrawal Agreement on January 1, 2021, this handbook will clarify the circumstances around migrating to France after Brexit.


Visa requirements for citizens of the United Kingdom entering France after Brexit


Short stays


When traveling to any nation inside the Schengen Area for up to 90 days in any 180 days, citizens of the United Kingdom do not need a visa. This includes the country of France. As a result of the United Kingdom's decision to leave the European Union and the European Free Trade Association (EU/EFTA), citizens of the United Kingdom will no longer need a French visa for visits of less than 90 days.


In addition, citizens of the United Kingdom who are changing planes and spending the night in a French airport before continuing to another nation do not require an Airport Transit Visa (ATV).


If you are a resident of the United Kingdom and want to go to France, you will need to wait in line for those who are not citizens of an EU or EEA country or Switzerland. You will also be required to provide a valid identification document, such as a passport. You could also be required to provide evidence that you have health insurance, a place to stay, and sufficient finances to maintain yourself during your stay.


Long stays


After Brexit, a French long-stay visa (visa de long séjour) will be required for any citizen of the United Kingdom who plans to visit France for a duration that is longer than ninety days. Visas for extended stays in France are available for a variety of different reasons. These include going to France for employment or commercial reasons, going there to study, or going there to be with family members.


Many French long-stay visas are issued as a visa de long séjour valid title of stay (VLS-TS). You may remain here for up to a year with one of these, and it also functions as a temporary residency permit. Depending on the reason for your visit, there are many distinct varieties of VLS-TS to choose from. On the France Visas page, you may look up your specific visa requirements to see whether you need one.


Obtaining citizenship in France when the UK leaves the EU


After the United Kingdom leaves the European Union, every citizen of the United Kingdom who moves to France for an extended time must acquire a valid French resident permit, known as a carte de séjour. The duration of stay as well as the reason for the stay both factor into the sort of residency permit that is required.


Temporary residence


When traveling in France for longer than three months, citizens of the United Kingdom are eligible to apply for a carte de séjour. These are for some reasons, including jobs, education, prolonged stays with family members, lengthy vacations in France, and retirement in France. In most situations, you will be issued temporary permission that is valid for one year (in some cases it might be six months). On the other hand, depending on the circumstances, you may often renew it every year for a total of up to five years.


You have up to eight weeks from the time you arrive in France to apply for a carte de séjour via the French prefecture in your area.


You will most likely be granted a VLS-TS long-stay visa if you want to visit France for a while that does not exceed twelve months. This serves as a residency permit for a single year that is not renewed. You will need to apply for a carte de séjour to the French prefecture in your area to prolong your stay in France beyond the one-year limit that comes with a VLS-TS.


Permanent residence and citizenship


Citizens of the United Kingdom who have been continuously residing in France for five years on a carte de séjour that is renewable are eligible to apply for a permanent residence permit that is renewable for ten years (carte de resident). To be eligible for a carte de residente, you will need to demonstrate that you satisfy a set of requirements. In most cases, this requires demonstrating an adequate level of French language ability as well as evidence of integration into French society.


After living in France for three years, you are eligible to apply for permanent residence if you are the spouse of a French citizen or foreign national who has a carte de resident, or if you are the parent of a French child who is currently residing in France.


After settling in France for five years, you should seriously consider applying for French citizenship. You will need to meet certain eligibility standards to get temporary residency, just as you would with permanent residence. You will, however, be granted extra privileges after you become a citizen of France, including the ability to travel with a French passport. More information is available in our guidebook on French citizenship and permanent residency.


After the UK leaves the EU, you have the opportunity to work or study in France.


Working in France after Brexit


After Brexit, British residents who want to work in France for a period of fewer than ninety days will not need a visa to enter France. They will, however, be required to have a temporary work visa. This is true for personnel who are employed by French firms as well as those who are employed by foreign companies but are temporarily assigned to work in France. The employer should apply for a work permit from the relevant authorities in France.


After the United Kingdom leaves the European Union, anybody who wishes to work in France for more than ninety days will be required to apply for the appropriate long-stay work visa. There are many different types of work visas available in France, each one corresponding to a specific kind of employment. These visas include the "talent passport" visa, which is a multiple-year visa (up to 5 years) for highly talented professionals, entrepreneurs, and individuals who desire to establish a company in France.


Before applying for a work visa in France, you will almost always be required to already have a job offer from an employer in France. Your employer submits an application to the regional department of the French Ministry of Labor for a work permit on your behalf. If your request is successful, the French Office of Immigration and Integration (OFII) will notify the French Embassy in the United Kingdom so that you may start the application process for a visa. Your job contract will determine how long your work visa will be valid at this point.


If you want to remain in France for more than ninety days, you will be required to apply for an associated French resident visa. Exceptions to this rule include situations in which your work visa also serves as your residence permit.


Studying in France after Brexit


Following the conclusion of the Brexit process, citizens of the United Kingdom will be required to apply for a study visa to participate in any academic program in France that will last for more than three months. There are several different kinds of study visas, the most common of which are the long-stay study visa (visa de long séjour etudes) and the temporary study visa (visa de long séjour temporaire pour etudes), both of which are valid for a maximum of six months.


On a student visa for France, you are permitted to work for up to 964 hours a year, which is equivalent to around 20 hours each week.


After Brexit, becoming a British citizen via family membership or having family members join you as British citizens


Joining family members in France after Brexit


After the UK leaves the EU, citizens of the UK will still be able to go to France to live with family members. On the other hand, as EU nationals, they no longer have the privilege of doing so. If you want to stay with your family for more than three months at a time, you will be required to apply for a family visa. Additionally, upon arrival, you will be required to take care of the necessary paperwork for your residency permit.


You are eligible to join a family member in France if you are their spouse, kid, ascendant relative (parent or grandparent), or dependent cared-for relative. Your relative must be a French native or a citizen of the European Union or the European Free Trade Association. This also applies if a member of your family is a UK citizen who has been residing in France before the 1st of January 2021 and has submitted an application for a residence permit no later than the 1st of October 2021. (see more below).


You are eligible to join a relative already residing in France if the relative is a non-EU or EFTA citizen and has a French residence permit, and you are either their spouse or a dependent kid less than 18 years old. At least one year and one eighteen months must have passed since the relative's lawful arrival in France. In addition to this, they should be able to provide you with lodging and financial assistance.


If you are already married to a French citizen, you do not need to apply for a family visa.


The initial period of validity for family visas and residence permits is normally one year, however, this period may be extended if necessary.


Being joined by family members after Brexit


You will be considered a national of a third country if you are planning to relocate to France after Brexit and want other members of your family to join you there. This indicates that only your spouse and any dependant children (up to the age of 18) are eligible to travel with you. To enter the country legally, relatives will need to apply for their family visas and residency cards.


In most circumstances, you will be required to have been a resident of France for a minimum of 18 months. It is often possible to make arrangements via your work visa to bring your spouse and any children with you if you are entering France on a work visa and desire to do so. You will be responsible for paying the extra visa fees for each member of your family. For further information, please refer to our guide on obtaining family visas in France.


What are the legal ramifications of owning a second house in France?


The post-Brexit visa requirements for British citizens who own second homes in France will be determined by the total amount of time each year that is spent at the French house.


You do not need a visa to enter France if you want to stay at your French property for fewer than 90 days per 6 months. This is because, after Brexit, citizens of the United Kingdom will be permitted to travel across the Schengen Area for shorter stays of up to 90 days within 180 days.


If you want to remain in France for three to six months every year, you are required to apply for a temporary long-stay visa (VLS-T Visiteur). You are not authorized to work while in possession of this visa, which is valid for six months but is not renewed.


If you remain in France for more than half of each year, you will be deemed a resident of France and will be required to apply for a long-stay visa (the one-year VLS-TS).


UK nationals living in France before Brexit


The conditions of the Withdrawal Agreement are favorable for all British citizens who have been residing in France before the 1st of January 2021. This indicates that they are entitled to the same legal protections as EU and EFTA nationals who reside in France. However, they need to submit an application for a residence permit under the withdrawal agreement (WARP).


You have until the first of October 2021 to acquire a WARP. The original deadline was going to be on July 1, 2021; however, it has been pushed out to September 30. You can submit the application using a specialized website that has been established by the French government.


You will also need to be either working, self-employed, engaged in studies or training, or show that you have adequate means to support yourself and any dependent family members to be eligible for this residence visa.


Once you have a WARP, you will continue to enjoy the same rights to work, study, use public services, and be joined by family members as you had while you were an EU citizen. These rights include the ability to work in any country that recognizes the WARP.


Temporary residents


Residents of the United Kingdom who will have been lawfully residing in France for less than five years on the 31st of December, 2020 are eligible to apply for a residence permit valid for five years. After the validity of this permission has expired, they will be entitled to apply for a permanent residence permit valid for ten years or even for citizenship in France.


If you are a citizen of the United Kingdom who visited France before the 31st of December 2020 to look for work but left France without having secured employment, you will be eligible to get a temporary residence visa that is valid for six months. You will need to provide evidence that you are actively seeking employment and that you have a high possibility of doing so within the allotted time frame of six months.


Citizens of the United Kingdom who were already residing in another EU nation and working in France before the first of January 2021 will be able to continue doing so after that date. They will, however, be required to get a document de circulation from the French prefecture where they are employed.


Permanent residents


You are eligible to apply for a French permanent residence permit if, as of the 31st of December 2020, you are a citizen of the United Kingdom and have been residing in France for more than five years. This is good for ten years, and its validity may be renewed. You may also give some thought to applying for French citizenship if you have been a legal resident of France for at least five years and you fulfill the conditions.


Family members


Residents of the United Kingdom who moved to France before January 1, 2021, and brought family members with them are required to apply for a WARP no later than October 1, 2021. This includes spouses and children, as well as ascendant relatives and relatives who are cared for.


Residents of the United Kingdom who have family members living in France and those family members who joined them after January 1, 2021, are eligible for residency if the family link existed by December 31, 2020. Family members are required to apply for a Schengen entrance visa valid for a stay of up to three months that may be processed quickly and free of charge. You will be required to provide documentation of family relations, as well as proof that the family member you are joining was living in France before the implementation of Brexit and that they would have a WARP by October 1, 2021. After that, you will need to apply for your residence visa in France.


Members of the family whose connection started after the 31st of December 2020, as well as those requesting to join relatives after the 1st of October 2021, will be required to apply for a French family visa if they want to remain in France for more than three months at a time. Within the first two months of their arrival in France, they will also be required to apply for a residence permit (carte de séjour). These relatives will enjoy the same rights as family members of EU and EFTA citizens who are not from outside of the EU or EFTA.



0 comments

Comments


bottom of page