CPAM and Residency

To whom it may concern, HELP!!!

My partner, elderly father and I recently moved to France in September 2020 on a permanent basis. We all three are entitled to receive an S1 Form from the NHS Business Services Authority, so at present we do not have any healthcare cover. My father has received his S1 Form and but both my partner and I are still awaiting ours.
I speak limited French (although I am learning), my partner and father do not speak French, so I was unable to contact L’Assurance Maladie/CPAM via telephone, and since I am not registered with them, which means I do not have an account and you need one to email them.
A friend used her account to email on my behalf to request an appointment and the criteria for registering with them. She was told that the S1 holder would have to have residency status before registering the S1 Form.
My understanding of the UK Withdrawal Agreement from the EU is that you do not need to have official residency to register and S1 Form with them.
It is also my understanding that I cannot apply for residency until I have prove of healthcare cover… So this appears to be a catch 22 situation.
We can’t register onto the French healthcare system until we have official residency status… but we can’t apply for residency without evidencing healthcare cover!
Am I missing something here? Do we need to initially take out full healthcare insurance for each of us to apply for residency first, then register our S1 Forms, or are L’Assurance Maladie/CPAM incorrect in their declaration that we need residency to register an S1 Form.
If the latter, how do we circumvent this? Who do we need to speak to?
Sorry for this long winded email, but I am at a loss at how t proceed.
Many thanks Fiona


Hi @fiona and welcome back to SF
You need to chat with @fabien the SF insurance expert and with @toryroo who is up to speed on CdS-WA issues. @JaneJones is also quite clued up on CPAM.
I’ve tagged them so they should respond to you in due course.
You can also use the insurance drop down in the top banner to contact fabien (who speaks/writes perfect English).
The main thing is not to stress yourselves just now. Generally, things can be fixed once you talk to the right people.


Hi Graham,

Thank you very much. It’s difficult not to start panicking as time is running out to register the S1 Forms. I believe it has to be done by the 30th June this year. Thanks again.

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Hi @fiona, happy to help if I can. Don’t worry you can apply for a VISA and a carte de séjour even without an S1 as you can always “go private” instead but the acceptance of S1 should expire by the “end of June” if we are to trust Mr Macron and if nothing changes :wink: But, again, you can always get some medical insurance (with us hopefully :stuck_out_tongue: ) and you’ll be okay too… It’s best to talk with someone if you feel lost, someone who is knowledgeable on VISAs / WARP / Carte de séjour so that they’ll guide you along the way. Y’oull work it out I’m certain as we’re getting dozen of applications a day and never got an issue (so far :pray: ).

Good luck,


Do not panic!! It will be fine…you are just getting a real French experience. Add ”sang-froid” to your french vocabulary… ie stay french’ly calm about admin woes.

CPAM are renowned to spouting this line, which is not true. You need to phone:

  1. DWP in Newcastle to hurry along your S1s…they should not take 7 months! Normally get them in a couple of weeks.

  2. The CPAM English speaking helpline to get them to sort this for you. I’ll dig out the number is no one pops up to add it on here.

Toryroo is the expert in applications for WARP cards but I understand you should each apply now, explaining in the notes/observations section that your S1 will follow for the 2 or you without one, and for your father just attach a copy of it as this is acceptable proof of healthcare. You will then get receipts of your applications which are acceptable to CPAM as proof of residency. Unless Toryroo says otherwise I think it is fine to add documents to your application later, or take them with you when you get your appointment.

If you were eligible for S1s from the beginning of this year all will be fine. No need for private health insurance in my view.

And yes the deadline is 30th June. But the application process is simple, you could probably do it tomorrow and make yourselves feel better! :slightly_smiling_face:


English speaking CPAM helpline number 09 74 75 36 46


Hi Jane,

Thank you very much, feel a bit more reassured now. Will get onto completing the forms. You can only contact the DWP exportable benefits team by email now, and I did so a couple of weeks ago. They replied last Friday and said to give it two weeks. Never mind French bureaucracy, British is not much better lol Thanks again.


Hi Graham,

Thank you again. I will give them a call.

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In England do you have the phone number for the French speaking NHS registration helpline?!!

(the guys on the English speaking CPAM helpline are very helpful)


No, but if you can’t communicate with your doctor a translator can be booked free of charge in any one of 128 languages, including british sign language. The NHS spends an awful lot more on translation (no reliable figures available) than a few staff at CPAM…

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Yes you can contact them by phone.
Well not the processing teams, but someone who can answer questions/check status.

If your basis for requesting S1 is retired state pensioner, then you only need to deal with the DWP. Tel. enquiries for this +44 191 218 1999.

If your basis for requesting S1 is still working in UK residing France, or posted worker, or another rare qualifying situation then you have to start by contacting HMRC with your request as HMRC have to check your status then if OK they instruct the DWP to issue it. tel. HMRC for enquiries on this +44 191 203 7010.

You had to be resident by 31st Dec 2020 but you have until 30 June 2021 to apply under the WA which is a hard date of closure.

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PS if you possibly can apply for S1 online. They will hit you with a massive delay if you have to submit the application by paper/post.

This happened to me - suddenly after 5 earlier conversations checking time required, out of the blue they hit me with 4x the previously quoted number of weeks to process and I’m still waiting.

Morning Fiona

I retired in Jan and applied for my S1.

It took several phone calls , so if they do not meeting the deadlines they give you, keep on chasing.

Took in excess of 8 weeks and many broken promises, but you will get there

All the best


How times have changed! OH got his in 2018 and all it took was a phone call!

Interesting that it’s taking so long. We rang up DWP in March about a “retirement-style” S1 for my partner piggy-backed onto the one I already had and it arrived in a week… :thinking:

Very different situation for a workers’ S1 of course. What did surprise me though was that they didn’t ask for any evidence that we were actually married/pacsed - we could have just said we were…

Hi good morning,

This is great news to me.

My mother moved to live with us last year here in France.

She now has her Titre de Sejour but I have been fighting with Newcastle to get her S1 since last December and nothing is happening. She is due fo some major dental treatment next month.

This has been such headache, (I’m still chasing Provisional Replacement Certificates which the hospital here has refused for a small operation mum had in Feb of this year.)

So from what I understand , I don’t need to apply for the S1 via Newcastle, but can just go to my local CPAM office ? Is that correct ? Thanks

How is your healthcare currently covered, Fiona ?

Sorry, no. You have to get it from the UK first and then take it/send it to CPAM.

Depending on the dental treatment having an S1 won’t make a massive difference as it might not be something that attracts a lot of reimbursement.

Oh right ok thanks, so I have to wait for Newcastle to issue it ?

'Fraid so…I think they may be very very busy with al the late escapees from the UK!