Applying for residency permits – new system now live

The French Government has opened its online system for British nationals and their family members to apply for a residency permit.

In line with the provisions of the Withdrawal Agreement, British nationals and their family members, already living in France or who settle here before 1st January 2021, will be able to apply for a five or ten year residency permit, depending on their personal circumstances.

They will have to make their applications using the online site before 1st July 2021, but will have until 1st October 2021 to receive their card. Their rights will continue throughout this period.

After having made their application, applicants will receive an e-mail from their local Prefecture offering an appointment for fingerprinting and photos. The residence permit will be sent directly to their home address by post.


An easy-to-use and flexible system

Ambassador to France, Ed Llewellyn, said

“The French government has been very clear that it wants British nationals living here to stay and I’m pleased that the launch of the online residency system will make this as simple a process as possible. Please do seek out information about the system, tell your friends and neighbours about it, and make your applications before the 1 July 2021.”

The system will be easy-to-use – the vast majority of British people living in France should be able to make their application without issues. However, the British Embassy is working with four organisations (SSAFA, International Organisation for Migration, Church of England – Europe Diocese, and the Franco-British Network) to support the most vulnerable in making their application. Full details are available on the Living in France guide.

The British Embassy is asking British citizens in France to help spread the word by telling friends, neighbours and family members about the residency application website, and offering assistance if anyone in their community is less confident using the internet.


All British nationals living in France will need to have a residency permit – this applies whether you already hold an existing Carte de Sejour, are married to a French spouse, or have lived here for a substantial amount of time.

If as a British national you have been in France for longer than five years or are married to a French national, you will be eligible for permanent residency, which will see you issued with a ten-year renewable residency permit. 

If as a British national you have been living in France for less than five years, you will be eligible for a card with five years’ validity, and you will need to provide some evidence of your personal situation. The online flowchart on the residency application website will show what documents you need to provide.

The 9000 British nationals that applied online between October last year and early January this year won’t need to apply again. If this is you, the advice is to wait for your Prefecture to get in touch. The exception to this is if you have moved to a different department – in which case you will have to make a new application.  

Further information

British nationals can find further information related to the residency application and the documentation needed on the residency website itself.

French government information related to EU Transition and citizens’ rights is available here.

UK government information for British nationals living in France can be found here.

Regular updates are posted on the British Embassy’s social media:

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