Before Brexit you can apply for a European carte de séjour at your local prefecture under the current system, although this is optional. If you have applied and your residency application has been refused, or you think it has been handled incorrectly by your préfecture, contact British Embassy Paris. You should include information about the issue, when the event took place, and which préfecture (département) it relates to. We will provide feedback to the French Ministry of the Interior and request improvements as necessary.
Many people are choosing to wait and apply to the post-Brexit system, which should be simpler and easier to complete (see below). This may be easier, in particular, if you cannot get an appointment at your prefecture before the day the UK leaves the EU, or have not had an update on your EU carte de séjour application.
After Brexit, whether you have obtained a European carte de séjour or not, all UK nationals resident in France will need to obtain a new type of residence permit relevant to their situation to claim their rights. This includes UK nationals waiting for French nationality and UK nationals married to or PACsed to (in a civil partnership with) French nationals.
If the UK leaves the EU with a deal and you are resident in France before the end of the implementation period, you will be able to stay.
Read the French government’s guidance on residency rights (in English).
If there are changes to residency registration processes, we will update this guidance as soon as information is available.
If the UK leaves the EU without a deal, and you live in France on the day the UK leaves the EU, you will have a grace period of 1 year. During this period, you will retain your right of residence, and associated work and social rights. You must apply for your new residence card within 6 months of the day the UK leaves the EU, and you will receive it by the end of the 1-year grace period. The French government has said you will be able to travel outside of France while your application is being processed.
The French Prime Minister announced on 9 September 2019, that UK nationals will be able to apply for the new residence permits via an online portal. This portal is now live in an initial trial phase.
If there’s no deal, the card you are issued will depend on your personal situation. The specified categories are:
- UK nationals who have been living in France for 5 years or more
- UK nationals who have been living in France for less than 5 years and fall under one of the below categories:
- salaried worker with a Contrat à Durée Indéterminée (CDI)
- salaried worker with a Contrat à Durée Déterminée (CDD)
- self- employed
- during the last year have either graduated in France or worked for at least 3 months and are now looking for work or creating a business
- family members of UK nationals who qualify for one of the above categories
- UK nationals who have been living in France for less than 5 years but do not fulfil any of the above categories
If there’s no deal new residence cards will cost €119. If you have lived in France for at least 5 years and hold a permanent carte de séjour prior to Brexit, you will be able to exchange your current card for the new card (the fee still applies).
The French Ministry of Interior have detailed this information in an ordonnance and accompanying decree. You can read their question and answers on residency (in French) and their official guidance for UK nationals (in English)