Organising documentation, coupled with migrating staff across the world, needs a designated in-house department. Few companies have the time, the resources or want to invest in such an operation. Bradford Jacobs does have the resources to sidestep all these issues. As an international payroll provider, we ensure all your employees comply with work permit and visa regulations with our Employer of Record (EOR) solution.
There is an alternative. We can also recruit staff in France through our Professional Employer Organisation (PEO) networks without requiring visas or work permits. The result? Your company is running within days rather than weeks or even months.
When travelling abroad for work, business or pleasure, most people need either an entry visa or work visa, work or residence permit depending on the country they are going to and which country they are travelling from. In France, the process is highly complicated, and although information is readily available, the procedures can be tricky for the uninitiated and professional advice will be a boon!
France is a member of the European Union (EU) and the European Economic Association (EEA), and these nations’ citizens have ‘free movement’ within this area, alongside the Economic Free Trade Association (EFTA) countries and do not require an entry visa, work, or residence permit.
However, they will need the following:
After three months in France, they must register with their local town hall or municipality, where they can apply for a residence permit if desired.
As well as the countries mentioned above, other Third Country nationals can enter France (a member of the Schengen area) without a visa for up to 90 days in any 180-day period and are on the visa-exempt list. Check this link for those who require a visa: https://www.schengenvisainfo.com/who-needs-schengen-visa/
Those not on the exempt list will need a Type C Schengen Visa also known as a Short-Stay Visa, or Uniform Stay Visa which allows them to:
This visa does not permit citizens to bring their families or settle in France. They can apply for single or multiple entries. People not in the EU, EEA or EFTA also require ‘permission to work’, a Short-Stay Visa, and a short fixed-term contract.
To work for less than 90 days: A Temporary Work Permit (ATP, autorisation provisoire de travail) applied for by the employer from the French Labour Ministry.
To work for more than 90 days: Prospective employees require a Work Permit for longer stays and longer periods of employment. These permits can be:
Visa de long séjour valant titre de séjour (VLS-TS) allows the holder to live and work in France for one year when validated by l’Office Francais de l’Immigration et de I’Integration (OFII). This can be used as a Residence Permit and serves as a Work Permit.
‘Salarie qualifie’: For highly skilled and qualified workers with:
‘EU Blue Card’
Suppose the foreign national does not possess a Visa or Residence Permit or qualify for the Talent Passport Permit. In that case, the employer applies for a ‘specific work permit’ to be submitted at least three months before the employee is due to start. The contract can be fixed or permanent. After receiving the work permit, the employee must apply for an entry visa and residence permit.
This allows salaried employment for those who do not qualify for the Talent Passport or other Long-Stay Visas but will need the following:
European Union (EU), European Economic Association (EEA) and Swiss nationals do not require a Residence Permit, Visas or Work permits for France.
Third Country nationals who are not on the visa-exempt list and whose employment will be for less than three months need to obtain the following:
For longer periods of employment and residence in France, a Work Contract that needs to be authorised by the *DIRECCTE, a Work Permit, a Visa to enter France, and a Residence permit are all required to live and work for up to a year. Depending on the occupation and salary, the qualifications and educational documents will determine the necessary paperwork.
* DIRECCTE – the French Regional Department of Enterprise, Competition, Consumer Affairs, Labour and Employment
A Long-Stay Visa (D-Visa) for more than 90 days and up to one year. This is equivalent to a Residence Permit and also serves as a Work Permit and is called a Visa de long séjour Valant titre de séjour VLS-TS and can give up to one year’s residence without having to apply for the Carte de séjour, (long-term resident permit that allows a family to reside in France). Including VLS-TS ‘Employee’ for foreign citizens employed with a contract longer than one year.
Salaried Employees Visa: Applicants must have a work contract (fixed or permanent) authorized by the DIRECCTE for up to 12 months. Also, the employer must obtain permission to employ foreign Third Country nationals.
Talent Passport Permits – Highly qualified and skilled workers with high-level qualifications, a contract of one year or more with up to 1.5 times the national gross average salary. Includes the EU Blue Card.
The VLS-TS Long-Stay Visas are equivalent to Residence Permits and also serve as Work Permits.
The process of living and working in France is as follows:
It allows the employees to apply for Work Visas and Residence Permits to work in France. The employer has to apply for the Work Permit (excluding, e.g., VLS-TS / Talent Passport Permits) three months before the employee is due to arrive. From April 2021, applications should be through the dedicated portal:
When the application is sanctioned, it goes to the OFII. Once agreed upon, the employer is notified, and it will then be sent to the Embassy or Consulate where the application originated. This allows the employee to apply for a Long-Stay Visa.
Documents required for Work Permit:
For companies outside France, other documentation is required. All relevant documents must be sent by the employer to French Immigration Office (OFII) to be approved.
A VLS-TS Long-Stay Visa
It is the equivalent of a Residence Permit. And can serve as a Work Permit in some cases. It is applied for at a local French Embassy/Consulate where the prospective employee is a resident. The process can be started online via the French website at:
An interview may be needed in person for the necessary biometrics. An external service provider can be utilized to help with the visa process.
Other paperwork will depend on which Long Stay Visa is being applied for.
When arriving in France, a notice will be attached to the passport. Within three months, the holder must register with the OFII to authorise the Residence Permit.
For more information, download our free guide or get in touch with our consultants here