Ming the Mechanic:
Carte de Sejour

The NewsLog of Flemming Funch
 Carte de Sejour2003-12-22 10:24
12 comments
by Flemming Funch

So, I've been procrastinating for a while going to the Préfecture to apply for our Carte de Sejours (residency carts). First because I was gathering the proper documents. Fresh copies of birth certificates with proper attestations and translations. Passport photos, financial records, copies of phone bills, etc. But I knew I didn't quite have everything needed, such as proper documentation of health insurance coverage, so I didn't quite know what to do. And my friend who has helped me before with this kind of stuff is out of town. And, traditionally, getting a Carte de Sejour is considered an arduous process, involving hours of waiting, lots of red tape, and having to return a number of times because one doesn't have the papers exactly right. Anyway, today I finally gathered myself together to stuff what I had into a briefcase and go down and see what would happen.

And here's the shock, then. The first thing they tell me is that we no longer need a Carte de Sejour. There's apparently a new law, just 3 weeks old, which says, essentially, that citizens from the European Union no longer are required to get Carte de Sejour. The point being, I suppose, that they in principle have the right to be here and to work here, so IDs from any of the other EU countries are considered equally valid here.

I suppose it is a relief. But that also leaves me a bit puzzled about what to do next. I mean, I kind of had looked forward to some French ID cards. I don't know what then actually indicates that we live here. And from my reading of that law, it also introduces some more stringent penalties for working here without a proper authorization to work, including fines and deportation. So now I'll worry about that instead until I figure out what our status really is.

But I find it interesting that Europe is becoming more open and relaxed about how people move around and the paperwork needed, whereas the U.S. seems to be going the other way. When we moved to the U.S. 18 years ago, anybody could pretty much come in and live and work there without worrying too much about anything. We were illegal aliens, but it didn't matter very much. You could get a social security card and a driver's license right away, and just start working, buying a house, etc. As long as you earned money, the details didn't matter. But now the U.S. is much more of a police state than it was before. And now in Europe I can live and work anywhere, apparently with less and less need for any other paperwork than showing my passport as ID.


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12 comments

27 Dec 2003 @ 19:37 by Jon @209.148.230.125 : Just curious ...
... as to how your work situation is coming along ? Oh... and that Budget thing - time for a report to your readership ?  


27 Dec 2003 @ 19:58 by ming : Updates
I was actually just about to write an update on the Budget thing. There's some good news there in the past week. And work, well, not a lot of progress. I have a bit more work from the U.S. for a month or so, a few little odds and ends. Positive signs, but not much more.  


12 Jan 2004 @ 05:04 by Mike @213.122.197.202 : Carte de sejour
Sorry, but I think you're wrong. The carte is still in effect even for EU citizens.  


12 Jan 2004 @ 07:12 by ming : Carte de Sejour
Well, the law seems clear enough on that point. And they sent me away with an official statement from the prefet of the region that it is no longer required. Which says:

"La Préfet de la région Midi-Pyrénées, Préfet de la Haute-Garonne, atteste que, conformément à l'article 14 de la loi no 2003-1119 du 26 novembre 2003, parue au journal officiel du 27 novembre 2003, relative à la maîtrise de l'immigration, au séjour des étrangers en France et à la nationalité, les ressortissants de l'union européene, de l'espace économique européen (Islande, Norvége, Liechetenstein), de la Conféderation helvétique, ne sont plus soumis à détenir un title de séjour"

The part that is not clear is: then what? Supposedly some kind of decree will be issued regarding which situations might still require the Carte de Sejour, and which might optionally accept the application.

Also, it really only makes sense if there's then another way of registering that one is now living in France. That's what they previously used the Carte de Sejour for, so they've better put something else in place.

The new law is mentioned in many places, as a "Latest News" kind of thing, and nobody seems to know what goes with it yet. Watch, for example, {link:http://riviera.angloinfo.com/information/1/cds.asp|AngloInfo}.

The intent seems to be to start complying with {link:http://europa.eu.int/scadplus/printversion/en/lvb/l33152.htm|this EU directive} which outlines how easy it should be to move around in Europe. Like that one should be able to stay 6 months anywhere before registering, and then it should only be a matter of registering, not this complicated procedure. Anyway, that's an intention but maybe not necessarily how it will be quite yet.  



12 Jan 2004 @ 11:10 by Ian @195.92.67.71 : About Time - and thanks ..
Hey Ming,

Well done and thanks for flagging this. I join you in procrastination, I have nasty reaction to all forms of authority (don't say it), I have to take very deep breathes at German airport security checks, particularly Munich for some reason.

It is about time, not to say overdue, meanwhile that twonk Blunkett is introducing ID cards in the UK.

When you try to explain to a French national that the english equate 'freedom' with the ability not to have to present your 'papers' to a policeman and then give only the name 'you are known by' they just don't get it.

Ian.  



14 Jan 2004 @ 16:21 by ming : French Info
{link:http://vosdroits.service-public.fr/ARBO/08020101-FXETR115.html|Here}'s a good authoritative French page on the matter. But at this point it still doesn't say much else either. Carte de Sejour not required, but they're waiting for a decree to give the details. So they haven't really updated their information other than the flash notice.  


18 Feb 2004 @ 07:43 by Pauline @213.161.223.27 : Carte de sejour
You're absolutely right, no need for a carte de sejour under the law you mentioned. Just looked it up on Legifrance. Must go to our local mairies with the relevant info, down here they are behind the times.  


17 Jan 2006 @ 12:48 by Mike Crisp @80.3.64.9 : prescription drugs
I am have type two diabeties and wonder how I will get my regular prscription drugs when I move to France and also how this might effect my access to health insurance .?  


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