Jump to content
Complete France Forum

Carte de sejour with french wife and kids


Recommended Posts


I am a British citizen with a French wife and 2 small kids (French citizenship). I've moved to France in 2010, had a permanent job until 2014, was unemployed for 1 year, and now a cross-border worker (commuting to London from Paris). It seems that I need to obtain carte de sejour to avoid possible issues with Brexit, but I am completely lost in different types of cards.

Can someone suggest if I can apply for a permanent (10 year) carte de sejour while I didn't have any carte de sejour before? Also, can it be a problem if I live in France with my french family but work in the UK? Maybe I should apply for a "Famille d'un européen - Séjour permanent"?

I will appreciate any suggestions! Thank you very much in advance,

Link to comment
Share on other sites

In the absence of any other replies I would suggest you apply for a carte de sejour permanent. The first question out of a few is have you got your last five years of French tax returns?

To make your application you do so via your prefecture. There is another thread here about this and peoples experience which varies from one prefecture to another.

I had to help my father with his and he comes under the Carcassonne prefecture which was very simple compared to some (but not all) others.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thank you very much for your answers! Yes, I do have French tax returns for the past 5 years (where I declare my all my UK earnings and taxes as a cross-border worker to avoid double taxation). However, if I understand correctly, having a French job is the requirement to get a carte de sejour here (which is not my case)? If yes, maybe I can apply as a family member or something like that? Thanks again!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Not so. Many people get theirs yet they don't work in France because they took early retirement.

To simplify put it you need to prove you have been resident in France for five years or more, that you have sufficient funds to support you and your family (although the family bit won't count in your case because they are French), you will not be a drain on the French social system i.e. they want a copy of your Carte Vital and "attestation" that goes with it. If you don't have one you need to have private health insurance for France.

You also need to give copies of your most recent bank statements including savings i.e. the last one you have. With the exception of the tax returns all documentation should not be more than 90 days old.

Remember at present as an EU citizen the CDS is free. After March next year when the UK leaves the EU you will have to pay for it in the same way as any other immigrant from a "third country" wanting French residency and there may well be a time limit on it. At that time it may well be obligatory to have one thereafter because you are no longer and EU citizen and there are penalties if you don't have one as the French law stands at the moment. Will it change for Brits, who knows so plan for the worse.

Don't be frightened about applying. Follow the information given when you ask for your appointment (do it by email if you can). There is no "interview just a form to fill in and your fingerprints taken. The appointment must be within 90 days of you asking for it and your CDS should arrive within 60 days afterwards. In my father case it was 32 days and they sent him an SMS message when it was ready for collection. You don't need an appointment (well in Carcassonne you don't) to collect it.

Don't be fobbed off by your prefecture if they say you don't need one because French law says it is your right as a EU citizen.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Bear in mind that different prefectures have different ways of going about things, and depending upon where you are it may not be a question of requesting an appointment and turning up at the allotted time, if you go onto your prefecture's website there'll be a section that explains this. For example,at Mont de Marsan the office is open 8.45-11.45am Monday-Thursday, and for first applications for CdS there are no appointments, so to be sure of being dealt with you have to get there as early as you can. We were there at 7.45am and were second and third in the queue outside, they only admit as many as they can deal with in a morning, about 20 I think, and so anyone that arrives after that will be turned away. Reckon about an hour for your dossier to be closely examined and your fingerprints taken, it's not really an 'interview'. We were able to go into the office together which saved us, and them, time. Four weeks later we got a letter saying the cards were ready, and this time we could make an appointment online to go and collect them, Friday morning is appointments only. Job done.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks CT for this.  You got there before I did, but with much more information.

As we applued as retirees, some of what we had to supply was differnt.  90 days old, no, but past 5 years (6mthly) EDF  or water or landline bills, avid d'impôt, etc.  Each prefec varies, so check what they want.

I also didn't know they they were supposed to give you a RDV within 90 days of you asking for it (it isn't happening in many areas) nor that I should get my CdS within 60 days of the RDV.  It's 5 weeks now, and nothing yet, but at least I now have a date after which I will chase them.  Sadly, Herault seems to be less helpful than Aude. We live right on the border, but have to deal with Herault.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

All I can say is that when I went with my father to the prefecture in Carcassonne there was a massive government poster on the wall telling you about hat is required and the wait times. Next to the number of days was a white square in which the individual prefecture could write in how long they are taking which was within the government figure. Carcassonne was well within the 90 days. Indeed for the appointment it took about 60 days.

In the nicest of ways I personally don't have the time, knowledge or inclination to go look for this on the internet all I know is what I saw with my own eyes on the wall in the prefecture at Carcassonne.

Below is the contents of the attachment we got from Carcassonne (in French, sorry). It's cut and paste from MS Word so if the formatting is wrong then copy and paste it back into a blank word document.

UE Séjour permanent

RENOUVELLEMENT: L’étranger doit se présenter au service d'accueil des étrangers (RDV à prendre le matin entre 9h et 11h ou par e-mail pref-etrangers @aude.gouv.fr) deux mois avant l’échéance de sa carte de séjour.


Les documents doivent être traduits en français par un traducteur assermenté.

Les originaux devant être obligatoirement présentés

- Titre d’identité ou passeport en cours de validité.


-Extrait d’acte de naissance

- Si marié: Acte de mariage et livret de famille avec éventuellement pages des enfants

- Si divorcé: jugement de divorce


- Relevés de compte en Euros

- Ou justificatif de la retraite, pension, par dernier versement

Justificatif du droit de séjour durant les 5 années précédentes : 5 derniers avis d’imposition complets

- JUSTIFICATIF DE DOMICILE par quittance E.D.F. récente (si étranger hébergé, joindre attestation manuscrite sur l’honneur du logeur avec sa quittance E.D.F. récente et sa carte nationale d’identité ou sa carte de séjour)

Justificatif de la continuité de résidence : tout document prouvant le séjour continu : quittances de loyers ou de charges, factures…,

- 4 photos d’identité (norme ISO/IEC 19794-5: 2005)

- couverture sociale en cours de validité (attestation d'assurance maladie )


Toute demande de titre doit impérativement être déposée dans les 2 mois précédant l’expiration de la carte de séjour dont vous êtes titulaire. A l’échéance de votre titre et en l’absence de demande de renouvellement, vous devrez justifier à nouveau des conditions exigées pour la première délivrance de la carte de séjour, y compris la possession d’un visa d’établissement (R311-2 du CESEDA).

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I would like to thank everyone here for your very thorough answers. They were very useful and helped me better understand what/how to submit for permanent CDS in my case - I will apply for CDS and will tell you about my experience! Take care!

Link to comment
Share on other sites


This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

  • Create New...