Carte de séjour: Online residency card system for Brits in France gets new launch date

The website set up to allow British people in France to deal with post-Brexit residency card requests is now set to go live next week after several delays.

Carte de séjour: Online residency card system for Brits in France gets new launch date
Photo: AFP

The site is now live – find out how it works HERE.


British citizens living in France all need to apply for residency permits after the end of the Brexit transition period, but so far they have been unable to apply for the new type of card.

The French government has created an online portal for residency applications in an attempt to smooth the process for the estimated 150,000 to 300,000 British nationals living in France, but the planned opening of the site in July was delayed because of a backlog of other immigration requests caused by the coronavirus lockdown.

The opening date was reset for October 1st, but on September 24th came the announcement that it was delayed again.

The French Interior Ministry initially said the site will launch on Thursday, October 15th, but then amended that to Monday, October 19th.

The French government is also set to publish a revised decree giving full details of the requirements for residency of Britons who move to France before December 31st 2020 – the end of the Brexit transition period. Among the details expected to be revealed in the decree is the crucial matter of income requirements for those who wish to stay here.

READ ALSO How much money do I need to stay in France after Brexit?

Disruption to the parliamentary timetable due to lockdown and extra Covid-19 legislation was blamed for the delay in publishing the decree, and the two-week delay in the launch of the website.

Kalba Meadows, from citizens' rights grup France Rights, said: “It's an important process to get right and these are difficult times all round, so we understand the issues that the French government faces.

She is hoping that France takes up the option of extending the deadline for applications – currently set June 30th 2021.

“We are hoping that the grace period for applications – currently the standard June 30th 2021 prescribed by the Withdrawal Agreement – may be extended, as the launch date could now be up to four months after the original schedule. Some other EU countries have already done this and we have asked for the same here.”

All British people who currently live in France or who move here before December 31st will have to use the online portal to apply for the carte de séjour residency permit.

Those who already hold a carte de séjour permanent can use the site to swap it for a new card, while everyone else will need to make a new application.

The only exception to this is people who used the no-deal online application site which was briefly live in October 2019 – those people should have already received an email telling them their application will be transferred to the new system once it goes live.

British people have until July 2021 to make their application on the new site.

Initial previews of the site have revealed a streamlined process and a lot less paperwork then was previously required by local préfectures for residency applications. The site will be available in English and will have a guide to exactly what paperwork each group (employee, self-employed, student, retired etc) will have to submit.

Although we don't know the full details of how the new site will work, here is a guide to everything we know so far about the system, the requirements for residency and the type of paperwork you will need to supply.



Member comments

  1. I went to the precinct in early march and im still waiting for my carte?
    No idea who to contact or what to do in this situation.

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French government clarifies post-Brexit rules on pets for second-home owners

Brexit hasn't just brought about changes in passport rules for humans, pets are also affected and now the French government has laid out the rules for pet passports for British second-home owners.

French government clarifies post-Brexit rules on pets for second-home owners

Pre-Brexit, people travelling between France and the UK could obtain an EU Pet Passport for their car, dog or ferret which ensured a hassle-free transport experience.

But since the UK left the EU things have become more complicated – and a lot more expensive – for UK residents wanting to travel to France with pets.

You can find a full breakdown of the new rules HERE, but the main difference for people living in the UK is that that they now need an Animal Health Certificate for travel.

Unlike the Pet Passport, a new ACH is required for each trip and vets charge around £100 (€118) for the certificate. So for people making multiple trips a year, especially those who have more than one pet, the charges can quickly mount up.

UK nationals who live in France can still benefit from the EU Pet Passport, but until now the situation for second-home owners has been a little unclear.

However the French Agriculture ministry has now published updated information on its website.

The rules state: “The veterinarian can only issue a French passport to an animal holding a UK/EU passport issued before January 1st, 2021, after verifying that the animal’s identification number has been registered in the Fichier national d’identification des carnivores domestiques (I-CAD).”

I-CAD is the national database that all residents of France must register their pets in – find full details HERE.

The ministry’s advice continues: “If not registered, the veterinarian may proceed to register the animal in I-CAD, if the animal’s stay in France is longer than 3 consecutive months, in accordance with Article 22 of the AM of August 1st, 2012 on the identification of domestic carnivores.”

So if you are staying in France for longer than 90 days (which usually requires a visa for humans) your pet can be registered and get a Pet Passport, but those staying less than three months at a time will have to continue to use the AHC.

The confusion had arisen for second-home owners because previously some vets had been happy to issue the Passport using proof of a French address, such as utility bills. The Ministry’s ruling, however, makes it clear that this is not allowed.

So here’s a full breakdown of the rules;

Living in France

If you are living in France full time your pet is entitled to an EU Pet Passport regardless of your nationality (which means your pet has more travel rights than you do. Although they probably still rely on you to drive the car/book the ferry tickets).

Your cat, dog or ferret must be fully up to date with their vaccinations and must be registered in the national pet database I-CAD (full details here).

Once issued, the EU Pet Passport is valid for the length of the animal’s life, although you must be sure to keep up with their rabies vaccinations. Vets in France usually charge between €50-€100 for a consultation and completing the Passport paperwork.

Living in the UK

If you are living in the UK and travelling to France (or the rest of the EU) you will need an Animal Health Certificate for your cat, dog or ferret.

The vaccination requirements are the same as for the EU Pet Passport, but an ACH is valid for only 10 days after issue for entry to the EU (and then for four months for onward travel within the EU).

So if you’re making multiple trips in a year you will need a new certificate each time.

UK vets charge around £100 (€118) for a certificate, although prices vary between practices. Veterinary associations in the UK are also warning of delays in issuing certificates as many people begin travelling again after the pandemic (often with new pets bought during lockdown), so you will need to book in advance. 

Second-home owners

Although previously some French vets had been happy to issue certificates with only proof of an address in France, the French government has now clarified the rules on this, requiring that pets be registered within the French domestic registry in order to get an EU Pet Passport.

This can only be done if the pet is staying in France for more than three months. The three months must be consecutive, not over the course of a year.

UK pets’ owners will normally require a visa if they want to stay in France for more than three months at a time (unless they have dual nationality with an EU country) – find full details on the rules for people HERE.