Trying to chase my french driving licence

Applied at the end of January to Nantes for a driving licence. Heard nothing since then. Has anyone any advice as getting so worried. I live permanently in France. My English licence runs out in January as I am 70 but in any case the address has changed! Help please. Brick walls!!

Several British immigrants who applied for a non-urgent licence exchange report that Nantes returned their applications fairly quickly, saying they would not process them until Brexit had been sorted out. Since you applied in January, I would have thought they would have sent yours back by now if it wasn’t going ahead. Good luck. I’m in a similar position. Applied in June and my licence expires on October 31. If all else fails, I suppose we could pick up a voiture sans permit – like my local doctor.

I applied about a month ago. No feedback from them, not even a confirmation of receipt.

Hi Al,

Thanks for your reply. Just getting so worried & little information to resolve this situation.

If you do have further information please do let me know.

Warmest wishes from a not so warm & wet Bristol. At home it is 30 degrees but have lovely cuddles from my little granddaughter which makes up for it!!

Debs Robbins

Absolutely nothing from anyone! Very worried & not sure whom to contact. Would be prepared to go in person.

I also sent all my info to Nantes, but when they decided ‘no exchanges until Brexit is settled’ they sent all my documents back to me.
I would phone them first, did you make copies of the details you sent?

The Nantes website says that they will not accept applications. My OH sent his in just before the website was changed, and the documents were returned about 3 or 4 months later.

This is the current website

Mine was sent in about 18 months ago. After about a year I was asked to confirm that I didn’t want to keep the heavy goods vehicle licence. And since then I have heard nothing. I am taking the view that since they haven’t sent back my documents it will one day reappear.

For this particular case with the licence expiring in January I would send a registered letter to Nantes explaining that so you have it on record.

This is the paragraph that says that your dossier will not be dealt with unless you have had your licence stolen, it is due to expire, or you have penalty points.

  • Vous avez demandĂ© votre Ă©change de permis dans un cadre non obligatoire ou v ous souhaitez faire votre demande dans un cadre non obligatoire ?

Vous n’ĂȘtes pas concernĂ© par l’une des situations suivantes :

  • perte ou vol du permis

  • expiration du permis ou fin de validitĂ© d’une ou plusieurs catĂ©gories,

  • demande de nouvelle(s) catĂ©gorie(s),

  • Ă©change consĂ©cutif Ă  une infraction commise en France entraĂźnant une perte de points, une restriction ou suspension ou annulation de votre permis

Votre demande ne sera donc pas traitĂ©e mĂȘme si vous avez transmis votre dossier.

My wife and I both sent ours just before we discovered that they weren’t accepting them - hers was returned but mine wasn’t, we assume because mine will expire in November - so it’s evidence I guess that the system is working as they set out.


I’ll certainly let you know if I hear anything, Debs, and I’d be interested in any developments at your end. Stay positive!

Thanks for that Jane. The FAQ is a hoot, reads more like an internal demand for more resources. My license expires in 2023 so I’ll wait and see what happens to my application in the meantime. Maybe a speeding conviction is required as part of the application :slight_smile:

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Regarding expiration, are we meant to wait until the license has actually expired, or can we apply before it does?

I first applied in september/October 2018, and have had no response. Jackie posted her application in the same post box at the same time, and received her new French licence in January 2019. My license is valid until 21 December 2019, when it needs enewing. I cannot renew in England because I do not live there, so I sent another application to Nantes in July . I included a covering note to try to explain that there was less than 6 months left to expiry. Again, no response has ben received.
The decision by Nantes seems perverse: For those that were resident in France before England set sail for its promised land of the Victorian Empire, the rules will be the same whether Emperor Johnson makes a deal or not.

I was one of those such people so why can we get no response? I am now a terrier with a bit between my teeth!! I am the biggest francophile out but this is driving me mad :rage:

We have a Moroccan friend who is in the same boat, and it is making working difficult for him. This mess doesn’t just affect the British, and is more a result of the decision to centralise the process than bloody Brexit.

Still no news after sending another email. Just getting even more anxious as January is really creeping up. Is there nobody who can give ANY info.
Keeping reading the same old story but nothing changes. What can I do???

I received a temporary “attestation” of my right to drive several weeks ago after applying for an exchange in June. The accompanying letter said my French licence had been “mis en production” or something similar. My UK licence expired on October 31. I’d be concerned too if I hadn’t heard anything by now but it’s possible they just cut things a bit fine. You’ve still got a couple on months to go. My attestation didn’t arrive until two weeks before my UK licence expired, so I wouldn’t despair yet if I were you.

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I’ve heard that this is a really useful site to get well informed advice.

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Thanks for some hope :smirk: