Formal complaint

Recently treated like merde at the local prefecture and would like to lodge a formal complaint against staff.

Has anyone any tips to help me write out the letter. Advice so far is to send it via registered post.

Everyone seems to have tales woe when meeting bureaucy but none who seem to follow it through seeming to accept the insults and woeful treatment.


If it was just one member of staff, perhaps they'd had a difficult day at work before dealing with you, or maybe a bad situation at home. We all know you shouldn't bring your home problems to work; or take work problems home either; but that's often not an easy rule to stick to.

My wife's advice is to be even nicer to the person giving you the hard time, understand that they might be having a hard time themself. But if they are being intentionally obstructive and difficult, being extra-nice gives you the moral high ground and will probably make them feel small

We have all come up against poor service, ignorant people and immovable bureaucracy here and at home. As an expat here, UK and Germany over forty four years I can tell you that you will only make it harder for yourself. As they say in the states suck it up and move on. By next week it will be history and you will be wiser. Might help to punch a cushion, have a good swear and try to laugh it off meantime.

Despite only living in France for just over a year but having been an expat in other countries for over 30 years, I can only agree with Andrew and Roz.... get over it, move on, don't keep hold of resentment as it will get you nowhere other than being regarded as a bitter person and don't take it personally. Put yourself in the position of a French person living in UK..... don't you think they might have a similar experience to share?!! Things like this happen all over the world and the only way is to just shrug it off as I have done many, many times in the past.

It'll turn against you unless you have a big one, ideally more than one, lots of evidence, preferably written, and can then go to the Defenseur des Droits. If not, drop it and move on.

I Agree with Andrew, it only builds the fence higher

I'd just let it go Bill and get on with life. It won't get you anywhere anyway, that's France!