From the 1st of June 2009, long stay visa holders will be allowed to reside in France for up to 12 months according to the validity of their visa and purpose of stay. They will no longer be required to obtain a residence permit ("carte de séjour") from the French local authorities ("Préfecture") as long as their visa is valid.
However, long stay visa holders will have to register to the French Office of Immigration and Integration (OFII) during the first three months of their arrival in France.
Please note that this procedure only applies to:
Long stay visa "visiteur"
Long stay visa for spouse of a French citizen "vie privée et familiale"
Long stay work visas "salarié", "travailleur temporaire", "jeune professionnel"
Long stay internship visas "stagiaire"
Long stay student visas "étudiant"
Long stay scientist-researcher visas "scientifique-chercheur"
As soon as you arrive in France, you will have to send by post office in France at your local office of the OFII the following documents (a list of OFII addresses can be found on the 3rd page of the OFII form) :
The residence form stamped by the consulate with the upper and lower portion duly completed along with:
A copy of the ID pages of your passport (containing information regarding your identity and passport validity),
A copy of the immigration stamp received at the border in France (or from the autorities of the country of transit) showing the date of your entrance through the relevant border,
and a copy of the visa issued to you at the French consulate
You will then be requested to appear for an interview and medical examination and pay a processing tax fee.
A proof of accommodation in France,
One ID picture,
Means of payment for the OFII processing fees
— Mention Vie privée et familiale délivré aux conjoints de Français : taxe due : 241 €
— Mention Vie privée et familiale délivrée aux conjoints de ressortissants étrangers : taxe due : 241€
— Mention Stagiaire : taxe due : 58€
— Mention Scientifique-chercheur : taxe due : 241€
— Mention Visiteur : taxe due : 241€
— Mention Étudiant : Taxe due : 58€
— Mention Salarié : Taxe due : 241€
Important: Please note that the processing fees may fluctuate once you arrive in France. For a full list updated of fees, please log on to www.ofii.fr or on www.timbresofii.fr for more details.
When the file is complete, a registration stamp will be added to your passport which will authorize you to stay legally in France for the entire length of your French visa.
More details on the OFII registration can be found on the 2nd and 3rd page of the OFII form document found here:
Minors under the age of 18 are not required to follow any of the procedures.
No. It does not concern the citizens of :
The European Economic Area
Switzerland, Monaco, San Marino, Andorra and Vatican
Algeria. France has a bilateral agreement with this country regarding immigration matters.
Also special rules apply for family members of an European Union citizen.
If the purpose of your stay is extended, you should apply for a renewal of your residence permit at the local French administration called "préfecture" within the last two months before your visa expires.
If the purpose of your stay in France has ended, you should leave France before the expiration of your visa.
If the purpose of your stay has changed (for example: you have a student visa and you are going to be working as an "assistant de langues") you must re-apply for a new visa at the French consulate of your last country of residency.