Carte Vitale

Pam Edmondson's picture

I have been trying, unsuccessfully, for the last few months to get my daughter added onto my Carte Vitale.  I feel like i am banging my head on a brick wall!

I sent a copy of her Birth Certificate, translated into French at their request, to be told it's not accaptable as it doesn't have her parents names on. 

So then i sent a copy of her 'certified copy of an entry' which has our names on and we paid extra for when she was born, again translated into French, another 50 euro's, and again not acceptable. 

I contacted the Registrar back in the town we come from in England who said that they don't do 'full' certificates anymore and that the one we have is all they do.

Has anyone else had a similar problem?  Does anyone know of any way round this problem?

Ciara McClinton-Staines's picture

I recently ordered full certificates for all our family online ( - as ours were somewhere in storage - which they posted to us in France for our carte vitales. I then got them translated and stamped and sent off. RSI did then keep writing to us asking for the English version, then the translated version (stamped), English version, French version (stamped), etc. etc. and so on and eventually sent us the form for the photos to be attached. But, seriously it took a long time of sending things over and over and them asking for the same thing repeatedly. They often wrote to us about the children saying that things were wrong but we knew we had sent everything that they needed and more.

I do know the name of a good but relativley inexpensive translator if you need it.

Good luck x

Pam Edmondson's picture

Thanks Clara,  I have found the website and ordered a new copy however the woman i spoke to when i rang to check that it did include everything, told me that it will be exactly the same as the 'certified copy of an entry' that we have.  She also said that they often get people ordering new forms for France as the French seem to like recent dates on the forms, fingers crossed this works.  We have paid about 45 euro's each time to get forms translated, how does that compare to the one you use?

Ciara McClinton-Staines's picture

Ours were the same for the mortgage etc. we never needed any translations but for the RSI - well they seem to be in a league of their own for requirements. Pam - we pay 25 euros per certificate - if you would like the details just let me know.

I have just checked our certificates and it is the copy of the certified entry that we have and they were happy with that. Maybe send yours as well?

Pam Edmondson's picture

Thanks Clara, i have sent you a friend request if you could send me the details of the translator that would be great, do you send them scanned copies of the originals?   Like you say RSI are in a league of their own.  We never needed anything translating when we bought our house either.

Ciara McClinton-Staines's picture

will try and send her details now. Not entirely sure how so maybe a pm or may be public :-)

marijke taffein's picture

I am belgian , all my papers are in flemish  , but  I got my papers all without  translation ... I just explain to  them  what is on it  , never had any problems  , getting carte vitale or   whatever     ---It s not always necessary to    spend money to translate    things ,   it depends all on the goodwill of the office  ....

Pam Edmondson's picture

Wow, lucky you, i guess the office in Toulouse is low on goodwill!

Zoe Buckley's picture

Funnily enough, I noticed the adversion is not to "foreign languages", it's only yo English. Getting an Australian driving licence changed over was a NIGHTMARE, until I came up on someone who's son had been to Australia, took an interest, and got my papers through. Before meeting this lady, I had been told so many stories, but all with a recurring theme "english documents, mumble mumble mumble".

After some moving around, I had a Belgian licence (flemish), and found it was transferred straight away. Yes, driving licences are differrent, because there is a standard European model, but, I've come up on this problem with quite a few documents, and forms.

marijke taffein's picture

if not sure how to explain things , take a friend who speaks  french -- hubbie is english, he always    explains  his  french is limited and appoligises for  that  , but even him gets away with all    his stuff     without translator  , and when he needs one , I  am there to help  ...we bought our house , got all the notary paperwork done  ,   had all our papers   to add and     even got a mortgage from a french   bank with   not even one paper   from   employers or income  translated --we ' re getting small refund on the  mortgage from the caf  [ allocation ] and there the same  , all paperwork  without translation 

Jane Williamson's picture

You can have the birth certificate apostilled, this makes it a legal document. The Registry will tell you how to do this.

Jane Williamson's picture

You can get the birth certificates apostilled, this makes them legal documents, which have to be accepted. The Registry will tell you how to do this.

Jo Blick's picture

I'm with RSI and they, too, have asked me twice now, to send birth certs..I've posted fresh copies this morning!

We've waited 2 years for our carte-vitales to be returned after I sent them back when they asked me to..I should NEVER have done this. All my french friends say it was not a good idea. I suspect the RSI may be institutionally racist. French friends have warned me about this with the RSI.

I think Jane's idea of getting the birth certificates apostilled, sounds like a failsafe possibility to try but I do actually feel the RSI are the real issue. They've always got our cotisations wrong and generally try to charge too much. They don't like dealing with people who need CMU from working for low self-employed wages either..I've had the receptionist tell me not to compare the systems with the UK because I'm getting things "free". I said it wasn't free when I've already paid my dues.

When they ask for Copies of birth certs they do need to be recent ones--I think within 3 months

Helen Parker's picture

The reason why the french administration ask for a recent birth certificate is because the french birth certificate is 'updated' with information about marital status. They are astonished to discover that our papers don't change and therefore we only need the original.

The Britsh embassy may be able to help too. Many years ago they supplied me with an official  paper explaining that we didn't have, and could not obtain, a 'livre de famille'. 

good luck!

Jane Williamson's picture

One thing that totally amazes me is that the french do not even consider that other countries in the EU may have paper work different from their own.

Why is there not a reference site for all these departments so that they can check what is the equivalent in any other EU country?

This would save such a lot of bother and heartache for the poor people moving between EU countries.

Pam Edmondson's picture

Me too Jane, also in the UK all government departments provide forms in all eu country languages, i thought this was supposed to be the law throughout the eu.

It would appear that many things in the eu are not equal or fair from one country to another, why have an eu if if it doesn't provide any standard for countries to provide services equally, it seems as though it's nothing more than a name.

Jane Williamson's picture

It also seems that many french officials do not think that the UK is in the EU because it is not in the euro zone.

There has been at least one post where someone was told that this was not Europe, it was France!

Andrew Hearne's picture

Not just officials Jane, I've had plenty of business people, students, friends etc who all though the Uk wasn't in the EU. They get confused with the whole euro zone thing and the fact that the UK always says no to everything...!

Jane Williamson's picture

How about General de Gaulle saying a very loud "Non" to the UK, despite all the Brits did for France?

I think that created a very definite mind-set in the British people.

Andrew Hearne's picture

yes, although he was the man france needed at the time, he was one of the most arrogant frenchmen in history. Mind you I think he was having a pop after at the UK after it had been invited to join at the outset but the UK said no as it didn't need such an organisation, it had its empire...!

Jane Williamson's picture

Politicians, who needs them?

Ian Swan's picture

I have just joined this site and see that you have had difficulties in resolving health insurance issues. May I suggest that you contact - numero vert 0800 900 258. This company has been providing specialist health insurance for persons living in France for the last 20 years. The staff are bilingual as is the website. Cover is provided by Lloyd's of London. Good luck. Ian Swan
Nicky Ferguson's picture

Fiona thanks for that, I may well contact them too. My husband has been set up as an artisan now for 16 months. Finally after chasing we have the bills to pay them but of course we have to go via our accountant as they are asking far too much. We have been waiting all this time and no carte vitales. We have sent, resent and resent all the documents over and over with translations. They never actually reply to the correspondance. Finally I had the papers to send off for the carte vitale but with all my details wrong after our accountant wrote to them. I am getting fed up with the RSI so its good to know there is somewhere to go if it is not sorted out. i should add that my husband still only has his temporary social security number and despite registering with a doctor 12 months ago as requested, he still has not health insurance card. I've just been looking at SOLVIT-very very useful to know they exist!

Jane Williamson's picture

I too have a case being taken up by the Commission. As my case is on behalf of all ex-pat retirees in France, I have had my case take up by my ex UK MEP. There are also talks going on between the DoH in UK and the French health authorities. My case with the Commisssionmis with the French authorities, who have ten weeks to reply. Although the outcome will only apply to myself, I fail to see how the French authority, the CLEISS, will be able to refuse other ex-pat pensioners with exactly the same criteria as myself. SOLVIT has already been mentioned on SFN and I urge anyone who has a problem to see if it would apply to them.
Jane Williamson's picture

@Fiona, if you search for denial of Healthcare to British expat retirees here on the network, you will see the whole story. It has been covered in The Connexion newspaper, who have, unfortunately, given a false impression that this problem has been solved. We are still waiting for the French reply and the outcome of the talks between the DoH and the CLEISS.