Visa for Chinese wife of UK citizen

The basic facts. I am from the UK, my wife of 7 years is a Chinese (People’s Republic of China) citizen. Currently resident in Hong Kong. We own a home near Limoges and plan to move in mid-June.

We are both freelance (or will be) videographers / producers.

The French consulate in Hong Kong said my wife cannot apply for a long stay visa (more than 90 days) because according to them this visa does not exist for a non-EU spouse (with the exception of wive’s or husbands of French nationals).

The consulate told us to apply for a visitor visa - 90 days - and then apply for change of status when we arrive in France.

But.... the visa officer said she didn’t know where we should apply once we got to France. The local Marie, the Interior Ministry, Immigration.. she simply said he had no idea - except “apply for change of status after you arrive”. She also could not advise when the application should be made, on arrival at the airport, after we reach our home.. nothing.

However, we have seen on other threads that non-EU spouses of EU citizens who apply for a visitor visa - knowing beforehand that they have every intention of staying - have been accused of misrepresenting themselves on their visa application, and are then subsequently required to leave the country and re-apply (if they are not blacklisted of course) - only to go back to square one.. apply for a visitor visa and then apply for change of status once you arrive... and so the wheel keeps on turning.

Anybody else been on this merry-go-around? Solutions?



Thanks Brian, thanks James. Appreciate your response.

It is strange anyway. My wife is Swiss, but being a couple of decades younger than me it is 'her' house, at least her name of the documents, cotisations, etc. We are both AEs (Auto Entrepreneurs) and do the same work, but we are classified differently. She is classified as UK of Swiss origin somehow which made her see red... She is not, never has been a UK citizen and her longest spell as a resident was seven years. How the bureaucracy figures things out is mysterious because none of it exists on paper! Yet they are prone to citing Loi XYZ, Décret ABC at every opportunity. I suspect, given James' answer, it was a bit of bureaucratic free licence.

The French consulate in Hong Kong is absolutely wrong. I am American and my wife is Brazilian and we both have the Carte de Residence and previously had the Carte de Sejour for one year periods. There are thousands of others like us in France. Where do these bureaucrats get their information or misinformation as in this case?