Brexit deal residency cards website to open early July

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The government says that it has now closed the website that it created for Britons to apply for the ordinary ‘third country citizen’ residency cards that they would have required in the ‘no-deal’ scenario and is working on updating and modifying it.

A revamped website will open from early July for applications for a card called titre de séjour ‘accord de retrait du Royaume-Uni de l’UE’ (Brexit deal card), which is expected to be free of charge.

However the government says Britons in France and their family members who had already applied via the ‘no-deal’ card site will not need to make a new online application.

“Your application has been taken into account and will be dealt with by the prefecture before it becomes necessary for Britons to hold a residency card,” the Interior Ministry announced today.

Britons who are residents in France before the end of the Brexit transition period will be able to benefit from the Brexit Withdrawal Agreement and the special new cards.

At present the expected cut-off date for benefiting (ie. the end of the transition period) is December 31, 2020. It could be extended if the UK government agrees to this before the end of June this year.

After the cut-off date it is likely that British people coming to France will need to follow ordinary ‘third-country’ citizens’ residency procedures including applying for a visa from a consulate in the UK and then one of various residency cards depending on work status after arrival in France. However this could depend on what is agreed concerning immigration rules in the coming ‘future relationship’ talks.

Britons who qualify to benefit from the ‘Brexit deal’ will have to apply for a new card before July 1, 2021, after which Britons in France will be obliged to hold a residency card.

The application deadline and deadline for obligation to hold a card are the same, which is clearly an issue considering that it usually takes some time to process a card request.

It is expected that for those who already hold an EU citizen’s carte de séjour – séjour permanent, the application will essentially be a swap with minimal formalities and no additional supporting documents.

For those with short-term EU citizen cards it is possible that a scan of the card may replace the need for an alternative justificatif de résidence document (rental, home insurance or work contract etc) proving you live in France, as was the case for the ‘no-deal’ site. However other supporting documents (possibly relating to healthcare cover or income) may still be required.

It is possible that there may also be two versions of the card, one for those benefiting fully from the deal because they can show five-years’ residency, and one for those benefiting temporarily until accruing five years (similar to what is called ‘settled’ or ‘pre-settled’ status in the UK).

There has been no clarification as to what will happen to outstanding applications that Britons may have made for ‘EU citizen’ cartes de séjour where they have not yet been issued with these cards.

This is what the website says:

The website ONLINE PROCEDURE TO REQUEST A RESIDENCE PERMIT FOR BRITISH CITIZENS RESIDING IN FRANCE BEFORE THE UNITED KINGDOM’S WITHDRAWAL DATE FROM THE EUROPEAN UNION” opened in the event of a no-deal Brexit which has been ruled out is now closed.

The French Ministry of Interior is launching its update in order to remain within the framework of the United Kingdom’s withdrawal agreement from the European Union which was eventually reached and ratified by both parties.

The provisions of the withdrawal agreement are applicable to British citizens and their family members already residing or planning to reside in France before 31 December, 2020.

Although the United Kingdom’s withdrawal from the EU is effectively starting from 1 February 2020, the withdrawal agreement provides for a transition period until 31 December 2020, during which all British citizens will keep the rights they acquired as EU citizens.

Pursuant to the withdrawal agreement, the British citizens residing in France will be issued specific residence permits “United Kingdom’s withdrawal agreement from the EU” for which they will have to apply before 1 July, 2021. British citizens residing in France will not be required to hold a residence permit until 1 July, 2021.

For this purpose, a new website adapted to the provisions of the withdrawal agreement will be opened in anticipation early July 2020.

If you are a British citizen or a family member of a British citizen and you have already applied for a residence permit on the no-deal Brexit website, you do not need to make another online application. Your application has been taken into account and will be processed by the local prefecture before the obligation to hold a residence permit becomes enforceable.

Source: The Connexion, gouv.fr