I am British and have had a house in France 40 years and lived here permanently for seven years now. My wife has a Carte de Sejour and our daughter was born in France and is currently British. I have been following the ex pat vote debate and note that the UK Parliament pushed it out to graze yesterday. I had in any event decided to look into taking up French nationality as I would prefer my wife to have a permanent right to residency in France (there is a large age gap between us).Having approached our Mairie several weeks ago I was informed that they had never had a request for naturalisation before and would look into it. After several weeks (including chasing) I was informed yesterday that if I am to proceed then apart from all the other verifications I will have to renounce my UK citizenship as France will not recognise dual nationality. Whilst one can understand why they may prefer that there are no dual nationalities are they in a position to insist on this? Could one "renounce" UK nationality to get a French one and then re-apply to the UK as of right? I must admit that I resent paying taxes in the UK and France yet will soon lose my UK voting rights on the 15 year rule yet never achieve presidential and legislative voting rights in France unless I renounce my UK citizenship. Furthermore will the French address much priority to a currently retired 66 year old person asking for French citzenship? Some will argue no. One would have to take an exam in French and on French culture and society and apparently be required to be as eloquent as a normal French 16 year old (eh? ....marmottements....)

I have a picture in my mind of a rather elderly stateless alheimered political refugee eking out the last days of his life, simply shelling out taxes but enjoying scant political representation. Do you remember Hancock's "The Wild Man of the Woods"? Replies on a postcard please..............

I tend to agree but he is still your MP (provided you left withinn 15 years) whether you are registered or voted for him or not. My MP did do something for me recently (but he did not support the voting change issue).

You lost more than something!

I think that Brian is right. My experience with my wife's Carte de Sejour required a lawyer to convince the local Marie and Prefecture as they seemed not to know the law or preferred not to deal with it. I will get going on these investigations once I've had news of the new budget arrangements. The considerable cost of going back to the UK is likely to dissuade me from a move even if I have to pay more taxes here. However if Liam Fox and his mates have their way we may have to move back anyway.

Jo, the other day when this question came up I checked and taking French nationality does NOT require you to relinquish your existing one. I think David and others may be suffering from mayoral dictatorship syndrome which we shall henceforth refer to as MDS. I hope Scotland pulls the plug, decides to stay in the EU come what may and then I know which passport I shall carry. Cameron is stalling and playing a double game anyway, so nothing to be concerned about just yet.

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David you read my mind! Except I was more concerned at the prospect of being unable to be supported by the state here if the UK have a referendum and decide to leave the EU. (recently became disabled so have fewer prospects left)

I know this is unlikely,(leaving the EU) but it concerns me. Life changes and nationalism (the bad kind, not the harmless kind) is always a winner in a recession. I see it in lots of little ways from both sides of the channel.

I definitely want dual nationality. I intend to stay here for a very long time, if not die here, and I am British.

I'm pretty sure the Mairie has it wrong about not accepting dual nationality, I looked into it a while ago and I definitely remember reading that it was allowed. Unless they changed it recently and I've missed something.

What I was wondering was,has anyone taken the DELF language exam at level B1 ?, which is a minimum requirement if you don't have an industrial attestaion of language skill. This is first on my list of stages to becoming a french disabled graphic artist, with a job :)

Listened to Hancocks 'wild man of the woods' two weeks ago on radion 4 plus! happy days...

Christa has already answered you Hayley - no it's not automatic because there were too many mariage blanc! here are the details ;-)

Christa, things have changed and the language test was introduced a few months ago by the last government BUT I agree with the having dual nationality - my kids have it by birth, and I'm sure that when I read through the latest notes that it still exists, will check when I get the time ;-)

you and me in the same boat Nick, I've got the forms but can't be bothered to fill them in, and can't now as I'm moving again and I need three months rent receipts or title deed for the forms (neither of which I'll have until Christmas!).

@David, I understood from the website that I could keep my UK passport if I went for naturalisation. The site's very helpfull with loads of info but I haven't looked for a while as i can't do anything. Like Brian, I'd just like a European passport/ID card and leave it at that. My kids can have both but they just have french ID cards - not worth paying for UK passports just for the novelty!

Heehee, the penalty of being a grammar school boy who learned Latin. I had the same a few months back, if I had meant ejaculation I would have written that, and that is NOT filtered out!

Well done Brian

By the way there seems to be some sort of anti Latin filter on this website. The Latin for with came out as c**!!!!!!!!!!!

David, there I am pushing soixante-quatre, so a very long way your junior, ha ha ha, doh! My better half is also my junior by quite a disance, hence 11 (today) and 9 (next month) year old daughters. I have spent most of my first seven and some years in one country, where I also spent a lot of time as a young adult so almost identify with more than the UK. Since I chose a profession that found me firmly based in an English university but always on the trot, so not often there a lot of the time, it dilutes. My first trouble and strife was just that, but Corsican to boot, later a Welsh person, then a Norwegian and now Swiss plus in between lady friends I did not accompany to anybody's registry office and of all hues, colours and whatever language, it dilutes everything further. OK, we are here and settled, our daughters are dual nationals of the UK and Switzerland, but does either of us want to become French?

I cannot be bothered. I would rather be part of agitating for people to get the vote if permanent residents here, initially EU citizens if must be. Nationality is not that all important to or for me. I would rather be part of an action from which others would benefit who might not want to change. I live here and that is where politics count and I am a very political animal, so it would make a difference in my life. It would be tiny though, since I will always only be one voter amongst the many. So change nationality for the vote? Nothing in it broadly speaking for me, so I'll wait until a clever president works out that by being generous with foreignes he could just get the votes to swing something marginal his way.

do wot mate? I should cocoa...........I'm pretty much past working being more of the oojah cum spiff, supa and actually actually generation when most of the globe was still pink one's parents would have been gobsmacked to think that a change of nationality was even being discussed. My stepfather after all refused to visit France post war as he had been trussed up and handed over to Les Boches near Nantes after parachuting from his Hurricane. As far he was concerned most French were the old enemy.

Je kiffe ton blog mec. Ma meuf et moi, même galère d'ouffe, les gosses sont pendus ici, po envie de me casser.

On a more serious note, I think we can pass the 16 year old eloquence test, but the question is do we want to change nationality to French?

And as you quite rightly point out, what happens should we decide to go to live, work and pay our taxes in another country at a later date. Will we have to go through the whole rigmarole again?

(Apologies for the opening gambit)