What will you do?

Harriett, thanks for posting that. I hadn't heard of this at all, and as our Maire is a) a friend and b) next-door neighbour I will take it up with him today. As you say it could be an answer, ntoatbly at my age (75) another ten years could possibly see me out.

Interesting topic, and one to which I have actually given a great deal of thought. I've been living in France pretty much my entire adult life (I came straight after graduating in 1992). France is the only place I've ever worked, paid taxes, bought a house. My daughters have a French father (though we never married and are now separated anyway), were born in France, and have only ever lived in France. I started my company here in France in 1996 and have provided for myself ever since.

If Britain is ever stupid enough (my opinion) to leave the EU, I will almost definitely apply for French citizenship, even though I've never had the least desire to do so so far. However, I'll only do it if I can have dual nationality, and I'll also make sure that both my daughters also have it. If dual nationality isn't an option, then I guess I'll just go down the carte de séjour route - my professional status, home ownership and French kids should ensure that I not have too many problems qualifying.

Returning to the UK is not an option - I only have my dad living there (and have no desire to live in Scotland) and don't feel any more at home there than I do here. I also couldn't afford to buy a house anywhere I might fancy living, and my daughters (now aged 13 and 11) would never agree to move with me.

I'm basically just hoping this vote comes out in favour of staying in the EU so that I can simply not have to bother about this at all...

Apply for your 10 year residency card ... now. Your mairie or the prefecture may tell you that you do not need it. You tell them that is easier to carry a resident card than a passport. They will give you one. My 10 card was renewable in 2013, and my husband also applied. Both of our renewals were approved 4 weeks later. I'm an American, but my husband is British. If the UK exits the EU and you have 10 year residency, you will be fine and no need really to take out French citizenship.

I'm of similar thought to Andrew - I will have to go through citizenship and learn to sing La Marseillaise - though no doubt by then my 3 girls can teach me it. It's the paperwork I don't fancy.

Go back to what? My family have no interest in being there, I basically share that feeling. My OH is thinking of applying for French nationality anyway, so the papers which are daunting suddenly seem less so and after all we are just people on a planet and why should nationality be that important? Unless, that is, a bullheaded nation decides it is what it once was rather than part of the 21 century.

Hmm, like a Polish plumber in the UK? And the WERE EU and legal.

Not quite sure how that philosophy would 'work' for a fair number of pensioners here though, do you? Although I did see that 10% of all pension payments made in France come from outside the country, so that might have a bearing?

I suppose also the definition of 'foreigner' could be interesting as well.


So what are you considering YOUR options are in the event of a vote to leave the EU?

Keep my head down and work hard.

Thought had crossed my mind too, Norman. everything I have is here, my family (French) and my business (French). The obvious is to go through the naturalisation process but I just can't be bothered for the moment (have you seen all the documents needed!!!). On the otherhand I can't see the state kicking me out, I think it'd go back to a carte de séjour situation where you prove that you can support yourself and your French family links etc. To be honest, I've got so much else going on in my life with a business and two young kids that I'll just wait and see...! ;-)

just passing through Andrew, so you are probably not even here anymore, but to let you know I am now French, as at April 2017,and it really wasn’t as painful as I expected. No questions that were unexpected or even sensible except trying to figure out where my absentee father was born! But even this was not a main problem when explained.

I went the family (French wife) route, and to be honest the most important thing they were interested in was my love of the French culture - and with a book in the Biblioteque Nationale, was home free - even with lousy French - but I am 77 so no test was required.

Go for it is my advice, especially with the current state of 'FU EU ’ from Britain.

1 Like

Hi Norman, and congratulations, well 2 years further on and I’ve just applied for copies of parents birth and marriage certificates to get things rolling. Apparently applicants who have been here for over 10 years have less of a wait for their dossier to be treated but as I type our regional centre for naturalisation (everything’s been delagated to a regional centre in the midi-pyrénées) can’t give me an interview date for me to hand in the dossier (which is a long way off being ready so I’m not moaning yet!) à + :wink:

Hi Andrew, well I must admit that I feel a lot more secure in my life now, but I do feel for those caught up in the continuing mess. There are a few near us, of varying lengths of residency (long and short term) who are still having trouble wondering what to do. For me the big care/worry was the health bit, but as I am now formly and completely in the system that has gone away. Big relief.
Apart from that I trust you are well and thriving?

1 Like

everything good here thanks, Norman, and hope all’s well with you too. :wink:

PS: I can understand the relief of finally not needing to even listen to all the brexit rubbish or worry what sort of deal will finaly be struck (if at all!). I’ll get it sorted in the end, sooner rather than later I hope!

Hi Andrew, we are thinking about it, but need to know that our health care will continue to be paid at 70% by the UK.
We have just downloaded the Livret du Citoyen, which, surprisingly only gives a passing mention to Napoleon.
I learnt more French history at school than they seem to need.
Lots of stuff about tge Ecict if Nantes and treati g Protestants well, but nothing about the persecution of the Cathars by the Pope and tge Duke of Burgundy.
Hope all is well with you.
We have just received a three week booking for our gite for next year which is very helpful.

Hi Jane,
well I would go ahead and do it, because at this moment you retain Dual Nationality at little or no cost. Whatever the fall-out is finally from Brexit, and my guess will be ‘no deal’ because I just can’t see how the demands of the UK and the position of the EU can seriously be reconciled. Plus how can any deal work when by definition half the population of Britain will be against it? I just don’t see how it could posibly work.

Although I took French Nationality from choice, having little or no connection with family in the UK, so had no emotional drag to consider. There is no doubt I saw the Brexit result coming from my reading of the various letter columns of the British Press and the virulence against Europe,so I got in early and had the inside track having both lived and owned properties here since 1982, and having a French wife for now forty years.

I agree the Livret was a bit of a surprise, but remember clture doesn’t always mean History, Art etc., but also support of the local Rugby Club or participation in social events of the town or village. .In my face to face interview, there was only recognising the basic facts of France being a Republic that seemed to matter (my interview was in Limoges, but papers were all from Nantes). However there was heavy emphasis on French culture but not in a Q & A form, more ‘why do you want to become French?’ sort of thing - and love of the country, the people, the food, wine, differences in scenery, were much more to the fore, and you supplied the enthusiasm. Needless to say the interview WAS in French, and obviously answers needed to be in French which was the extent of the language comprehension. Incidentally my wife did accompany me at the interview, and helped me across my deafness (and daftness)!

My suggestion would be to all considering the action to look at it as a positive thing ‘prompted’ by Brexit but not the reason for it. The latter smacks of opportunism and I feel might not go down too well. Above all be good-humoured, and don’t try to be anything other than yourself - unless you are a boorish, UKIP supporter - and if you are why would you be trying to keep in Europe anyway?

Just for interest on the formal day (after official notification by mail) we did sing La Marseillais, but the did kindly provide the words! There were about 50 of us there, and the breakdown was interesting. I calculated that over half, judging by their names were Arabs, there were about five who were obviously Black African. Two seemingly from Eastern Europe, One Scandinavian, two from India, and two English - including me. Almost all had a support person with them and many had the local Maire in a attendance as well, as I did
To be honest, I would have been surprised if many had that good French.
Above all it was a friendly day, and the Prefet was a delight.
Feel free to raise any further questions if you feel it would be useful.

1 Like

Sorry about the typos, but it is only 3.30am and the old fingers are not yet fully oiled up!

Hi Jane, yes French culture covers so many things from history to how the caf works, not many French people can give you the date (1635) the académie française was created but we’re not the ones deciding the criteria! I’ll keep you up-to-date as and when I get round to jumping through the various hoops!