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CONDITIONS FOR THE ACQUISITION OF FRENCH NATIONALITY

Posted on January 18, 2019

THE CONDITIONS FOR THE ACQUISITION OF FRENCH NATIONALITY

  1. Acquisition of French nationality by naturalization and declaration
  2. Acquisition of French nationality by naturalization
  3. Declaration of French nationality by marriage
  4. Declaration of French nationality by a French ascendant
  5. Declaration of French nationality by a French brother or sister
  1. French nationality of a child
  2. Child born in France to foreign parents
  3. a) Acquisition of French nationality between the ages of 13 and 16
  4. b) Acquisition of French nationality between the ages of 16 and 18
  5. c) Acquisition of French nationality at age 18
  6. Adopted child
  7. a) Simple adoption
  8. b) Plenary adoption
  1. Reintegration into French nationality
  2. Marriage with a foreigner
  3. Change of nationality of parents
  4. Exercise of certain public offices

1. Acquisition of French nationality by naturalization and declaration

  1. Acquisition of French nationality by naturalization as of June 25, 2018

Naturalization is a method of acquiring French nationality that is not automatic. You must meet all the following conditions to acquire French nationality by naturalization.

Terms

1) Age

You must be of legal age to be naturalized (art. 21-22 al. 1 of the Civil Code).

However, you can submit your application from the age of 17, but your naturalization decree will only take effect when you reach majority.

The naturalization of a minor child, who has remained a foreigner although one of his parents has acquired French nationality, can be requested. The child must have resided in France with this parent for at least 5 years on the date of the request (art. 21-22 al. 2 of the Civil Code).

2) Residence in France

You must reside in France at the time of signing the naturalization decree. The notion of residence is broader than the usual notion of domicile. It implies that you must have the center of your material interests (particularly professional) and your family ties in France. If you live in France but your spouse and/or your children live abroad, you may be refused French nationality (art. 21-16 of the Civil Code).

The length of your stay in France depends on your situation.

Duration of residence required according to your situation

Situation Duration of residence in France
General case (art. 21-17 of the Civil Code) 5 years
2 years of successfully completed studies to obtain a diploma from a French higher education establishment (art. 21-18 al. 1 of the Civil Code) 2 years
Contribution to the influence of France (art. 21-21 of the Civil Code) 2 years
Exceptional integration path (activities or actions carried out in the civic, scientific, economic, cultural or sporting fields, etc.) (art. 21-18 al. 2 and 3 of the Civil Code). 2 years
Military service in the French army (art. 21-19 §4 of the Civil Code) No minimum duration
Voluntary enlistment in the French or allied armies, in time of war (art. 21-19 §4 of the Civil Code) No minimum duration
Exceptional services to France (decree of naturalization taken after consulting the Council of State on a reasoned report from the competent minister) (art. 21-19 §5 of the Civil Code) No minimum duration
Refugee status in France (art. 21-19 §6 of the Civil Code) No minimum duration
Belong to a State of which at least one of the official languages ​​is French, and either have French as their mother tongue, or have attended school for at least 5 years in a French-language teaching establishment (art. 21-20 of the Code civil) No minimum duration

By way of derogation, even if you live abroad, you can be naturalized by decree subject to fulfilling one of the following conditions (art 21-26 of the Civil Code):

  • You carry out a public or private professional activity on behalf of the French State or an organization whose activity is of particular interest to the French economy or culture
  • You are staying in Monaco
  • You are doing your national service or are engaged in regular French army training
  • You are a national service volunteer

If you live abroad, the assimilation of residence which benefits one of the spouses extends to the other and to their minor children, if they actually live together (art 21-26 al. 2 of the Civil Code) .

3) Regularity of stay

You must have a valid residence permit when you submit your application, unless you have the nationality of a country of the European Economic Area or if you are Swiss (art. 21-27 § 3 of the Civil Code).

You must not have been the subject of an expulsion order or a ban from French territory still in force (art. 21-23 and 21-27 of the Civil Code).

4) Adherence to the values ​​of the Republic

You must prove your assimilation to the French community, in particular in the following way:

  • By your adherence to the essential principles and values ​​of the Republic (art. 21-24 of the Civil Code, Decree no. 93-1362 of 30 Dec. 1993, art. 33-2 and art. 37 and following, Decree . no. 2012-127 of 30 Jan. 2012)
  • Through a sufficient knowledge of French history, culture and society (art. 21-24 of the Civil Code, Law no. 2003-1119 of 26 Nov. 2003).

5) Knowledge of the French language

You must prove that you have sufficient oral knowledge of the French language to enable you to deal with everyday situations (art. 21-24 and 21-24-1 of the Civil Code, Law no. 2011-672 of June 16, 2011, art 2).

6) Occupational integration

Professional integration is an essential condition for assimilation and integration in France (concerning the applicant’s resources or even art. 21-16 of the Civil Code).

However, it is assessed on the whole of the professional career and not only on your specific situation at the time of your request.

The nature of the employment contract (CDD, temporary contracts) is not an obstacle in itself as long as the activity provides sufficient and stable resources.

7) Morality and lack of criminal convictions

You must be of good character and morals (art. 21-23 al. 1 of the Civil Code).

You must not be in one of the following situations (see art 21-27 of the Civil Code):

  • Have been sentenced in France to a sentence of at least 6 months in prison without suspension (except in the event of rehabilitation or deletion of the conviction on bulletin n°2 from your criminal record)</li >
  • Have been convicted of a crime or misdemeanor constituting an attack on the fundamental interests of the Nation (except in the event of rehabilitation or erasure of the conviction of bulletin n°2 from your criminal record)</li >
  • Have been convicted of an act of terrorism (except in the event of rehabilitation or erasure of the conviction in bulletin no. 2 from your criminal record).

Reference texts

Acquisition of French nationality by decision of the public authority

Provisions common to certain modes of acquisition of French nationality

Effects of acquiring French nationality

Administrative decisions

Articles 35 to 52

B. Declaration of French nationality by marriage

as of April 04, 2018

Marriage to a Frenchman has no automatic effect on nationality (art. 21-1 of the Civil Code).

The acquisition of French nationality is done according to the declaration procedure if a certain number of conditions are met (duration of the marriage, community of life, assimilation, etc.).

To acquire French nationality by declaration, all the following conditions must be met:

1) Spouse’s French nationality

Your spouse must be of French nationality on the day of your wedding and have retained French nationality since that date (art.21-2 al 1 of the Civil Code).

2) Validity of marriage

Only a valid marriage under French law, whether celebrated in France or abroad, allows the acquisition of French nationality. In particular, any marriage in which one of the spouses would be in a state of polygamy due to a previous undissolved marriage is excluded (Circular of the Ministry of Immigration of December 29, 2009 relating to the procedure for acquiring French nationality due to marriage, art. 147 of the civil code).

3) Length of marriage

You must have been married for 4 years to a Frenchman on the date of your declaration (art. 21-2 al. 1 of the Civil Code).

This duration is 5 years in the following 2 cases (art.21-2 al. 2 of the Civil Code):

  • You have lived in France for less than 3 years continuously since your marriage;
  • In the event of residence abroad, your spouse has not been registered in the consular registers for the duration of your cohabitation.

4) Place of the wedding

If your marriage was celebrated abroad, it must have been transcribed in the French civil status registers (Circular of the Ministry of Immigration of December 29, 2009 relating to the procedure for acquiring French nationality due to marriage).

5) Regular stay

You must be legally resident in France (provided with a temporary document or a residence permit) (art. 21-27 § 3 of the Civil Code).

You must not have been the subject of an expulsion order or a ban from French territory still in force (art. 21-23 and 21-27 of the Civil Code).
6) Community of life

The emotional and material community of life must not have ceased with your spouse since your marriage. (Circular of the Ministry of Immigration of December 29, 2009 relating to the procedure for acquiring French nationality by reason of marriage, articles 203, 212, 213, 214 and 215 of the Civil Code).

7) Oral knowledge of the French language

You must prove that you have sufficient oral knowledge of the French language to enable you to deal with everyday situations (corresponding to oral level B1 of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages ​​of the Council of Europe) ( art.21-2 al 3 of the Civil Code, Law no 2011-672 of June 16, 2011, art 3).

In addition, applicants for naturalization must have sufficient knowledge of French history, culture and society (art. 21-24 of the Civil Code, Law no. 2003-1119 of Nov. 26, 2003) and adhere to the essential principles and values ​​of the Republic (art. 21-24 of the Civil Code, Decree no. 93-1362 of 30 Dec. 1993, art. 33-2 and art. 37 et seq., Decree no. 2012-127 of 30 Jan 2012)

8) Absence of criminal conviction

You must not be in one of the following situations (Article 21-27 of the Civil Code):

  • Have been sentenced in France to a sentence of at least 6 months in prison without suspension (except in the event of rehabilitation or erasure of the conviction on bulletin n°2 from your criminal record)</li >
  • Have been convicted of a crime or misdemeanor constituting an attack on the fundamental interests of the Nation (except in the event of rehabilitation or erasure of the conviction in bulletin n°2 from your criminal record)</li >
  • Have been convicted of an act of terrorism (except in the event of rehabilitation or erasure of the conviction in bulletin no. 2 from your criminal record)

Reference texts

Acquisition of French nationality by reason of marriage

Provisions common to certain modes of acquisition of French nationality

Declarations of nationality

Stamp duty

C. Declaration of French nationality by a French ascendant

as of March 30, 2018

If you are a foreigner over the age of 65, ascendant direct from French and you have lived in France for at least 25 years, you can make a declaration of French nationality.

You must meet the following conditions as of the date of your return:

  • Be over 65;
  • Being the direct ascendant of a French person (parents, grandparents, great-grandparents);
  • Reside in France on a regular basis (with a temporary document or a residence permit) and habitual for at least 25 years;
  • Not to have been sentenced in France to a sentence of at least 6 months in prison without suspension (except in the event of rehabilitation or deletion of the conviction from bulletin n°2 from your criminal record);
  • Not to have been convicted of a crime or misdemeanor constituting an attack on the fundamental interests of the Nation (except in the event of rehabilitation or erasure of the conviction of bulletin n°2 from your criminal record);
  • Not to have been convicted of an act of terrorism (except in the event of rehabilitation or deletion of the conviction of bulletin n°2 from your criminal record);
  • Not have been the subject of an expulsion order or a ban from French territory still in force.

Reference texts

Declaration of French nationality by a French ascendant (article 21-13-1)

Provisions common to certain modes of acquisition of French nationality

Declarations of nationality

Stamp duty

D. Declaration of French nationality by a French brother or sister as of April 05, 2018

If you are the brother or sister of a person who has acquired French nationality, you can, at your majority and under certain conditions, make a declaration of French nationality.

The conditions to be met relate to your brother or sister and yourself.

By your brother or sister

Your brother or sister must meet the following 2 conditions:

  • Being born in France to foreign parents;
  • Have acquired French nationality.

His French nationality must have been acquired in one of the following ways:

  • At the age of majority, because of his habitual residence in France on that date and for a continuous or discontinuous period of at least 5 years since he was 11 years old;
  • At 16, because of his habitual residence in France when he declared his nationality and for a continuous or discontinuous period of at least 5 years since he was 11;
  • At the age of 13, at the request of his parents, due to his habitual residence in France for a continuous or discontinuous period of at least five years since he was 8 years old.

By yourself

You must meet the following conditions on the date of your declaration:

  • Has usually resided in France since the age of 6;
  • Reside in France on a regular basis (provided with a temporary document or a residence permit);
  • Have completed compulsory education in France in an establishment that has signed an agreement with the State;
  • Not to have been sentenced in France to a sentence of at least 6 months in prison without suspension (except in the event of rehabilitation or deletion of the conviction from bulletin n°2 from your criminal record);
  • Not to have been convicted of a crime or misdemeanor constituting an attack on the fundamental interests of the Nation (except in the event of rehabilitation or erasure of the conviction of bulletin n°2 from your criminal record);
  • Not to have been convicted of an act of terrorism (except in the event of rehabilitation or deletion of the conviction of bulletin n°2 from your criminal record);
  • Not have been the subject of an expulsion order or a ban from French territory still in force.

Reference texts

Declaration of French nationality by a French brother or sister (article 21-13-2)

Provisions common to certain modes of acquisition of French nationality

Declarations of nationality

Stamp duty

2. French nationality of a child

  1. Child born in France to foreign parents

as of March 16, 2017

A child born in France to foreign parents can acquire French nationality. Depending on his age, the conditions to be met and the steps to be taken are different.

  1. a) Acquisition of French nationality between the ages of 13 and 16

Terms

Foreign parents of a child between the ages of 13 and 16, who was born in France and has habitually resided there since the age of 8, may claim French nationality on their behalf by declaration. . The consent of the child is mandatory, unless his mental or physical faculties do not allow it (art. 21-11 al. 2 of the Civil Code).

  1. b) Acquisition of French nationality between the ages of 16 and 18

Terms

A child born in France to foreign parents can become French without waiting for their majority. He can, from the age of 16, claim French nationality by declaration if at the time of this declaration:

  • he lives in France,
  • and if he has had his habitual residence in France for a continuous or discontinuous period of at least 5 years, since the age of 11.

He can do this alone without parental authorization (unless he is prevented from expressing his will by an alteration of his mental or bodily faculties) (art. 21-11 al. 1 of the Civil Code).

  1. c) Acquisition of French nationality at age 18

Terms

Any child born in France to foreign parents acquires French nationality at the age of 18 if, on that date:

  • he lives in France,
  • and if he has had his effective and habitual residence in France for a continuous or discontinuous period of at least 5 years, since the age of 11 (art. 21-7 al. 1 of the Civil Code).

Reference texts

Civil Code: Articles 21-7 to 21-11, Articles 21-26 to 21-27-1, Articles 26 to 26-5.

  1. Adopted child

as of April 16, 2018

  1. a) Simple adoption

Simple adoption does not allow the adopted child to automatically acquire French nationality. The child who has been the subject of a simple adoption by a French person must request it by making a declaration.

Terms

  • The adopted child must be a minor.
  • He must reside in France at the time of the declaration (unless it is a child adopted by a Frenchman who does not have his habitual residence in France).
  • If the adoption was pronounced abroad, the act which establishes it must have been the subject of an exequatur decision in France.
  • The adopter must have been French on the date of the adoption, but it does not matter if he became a foreigner afterwards.
  1. b) Plenary adoption

A child adopted in full form by a Frenchman is French by descent. He is considered French from birth and does not have to claim this quality.

It does not matter whether the parents are married or not, as long as the French parent appears on the child’s birth certificate.

If the parent subsequently loses French nationality, this has no consequence on the nationality of the child.

Reference texts

Acquisition of French nationality by reason of filiation

Acquisition of French nationality by reason of birth and residence in France

Declaration of nationality following a simple adoption (article 21-12)

Declaration of nationality

  1. Reinstatement of French nationality by declaration

as of April 17, 2018

Reintegration allows a person who has possessed and then lost French nationality to regain it for the future. When it meets the legal conditions, reinstatement by declaration is a right. The administration does not have the power to oppose it.

  1. Marriage with a foreigner

You can ask to be reinstated in the French nationality if you lost it because of a marriage with a foreigner whose country does not accept the double nationality. This faculty is open to your unmarried minor children subject to having the same habitual residence, or in the event of separation or divorce, an alternating residence.

Terms

1) Links with Francee

You must have maintained or acquired clear links with France, in particular of a cultural, professional, economic or family nature.

2) Regular stay in France

You must be legally resident in France (provided with a temporary document or a residence permit).

You must not have been the subject of an expulsion order or a ban from French territory still in force.

3) Absence of criminal convictions

You must not be in one of the following situations:

  • Have been sentenced in France to a sentence of at least 6 months in prison without suspension (except in the event of rehabilitation or erasure of the conviction on bulletin n°2 from your criminal record)
  • Have been convicted of a crime or misdemeanor constituting an attack on the fundamental interests of the Nation (except in the event of rehabilitation or erasure of the conviction in bulletin n°2 from your criminal record)
  • Have been convicted of an act of terrorism (except in the event of rehabilitation or erasure of the conviction in bulletin no. 2 from your criminal record)

Reference texts

Civil Code: articles 24 to 24-3

Reinstatement of French nationality by declaration (article 24-2)

Civil Code: articles 26 to 26-5 

Declarations of nationality

Decree No. 93-1362 of December 30, 1993 relating to declarations of nationality, decisions on naturalization, reinstatement, loss, forfeiture and withdrawal of French nationality

B. Change of nationality of parents

You can be reinstated by declaration of French nationality if you lost it, during your minority, due to the voluntary acquisition by your parents of the nationality of a country that does not accept dual nationality. This faculty is open to your unmarried minor children subject to having the same habitual residence, or in the event of separation or divorce, an alternating residence.

Terms :

1) Age

You must be of legal age.

2) Residence in France

You must reside in France.

3) Regular stay in France

You must be legally resident in France (provided with a temporary document or a residence permit).

You must not have been the subject of an expulsion order or a ban from French territory still in force.

4) Absence of criminal convictions

You must not be in one of the following situations:

  • Have been sentenced in France to a sentence of at least 6 months in prison without suspension (except in the event of rehabilitation or erasure of the conviction on bulletin n°2 from your criminal record)
  • Have been convicted of a crime or misdemeanor constituting an attack on the fundamental interests of the Nation (except in the event of rehabilitation or erasure of the conviction in bulletin n°2 from your criminal record)
  • Have been convicted of an act of terrorism (except in the event of rehabilitation or erasure of the conviction in bulletin no. 2 from your criminal record)

Reference texts

Civil Code: articles 24 to 24-3

Reinstatement of French nationality by declaration (article 24-2)


Civil Code: articles 26 to 26-5 

Declarations of nationality

Decree No. 93-1362 of December 30, 1993 relating to declarations of nationality, decisions on naturalization, reinstatement, loss, forfeiture and withdrawal of French nationality

C. Exercise of certain public mandates

If you have held certain public offices (former member of the Parliament of the Republic, of the Assembly of the French Union, etc.), you can be reinstated in French nationality by declaration. This faculty is open to your unmarried minor children subject to having the same habitual residence, or in the event of separation or divorce, an alternating residence.

1) Age: You must be of legal age.

2) Domicile in France: you must have established your domicile in France.

3) Regular stay in France

You must be legally resident in France (provided with a temporary document or a residence permit).

You must not have been the subject of an expulsion order or a ban from French territory still in force.

4) Absence of criminal convictions

You must not be in one of the following situations:

  • Have been sentenced in France to a sentence of at least 6 months in prison without suspension (except in the event of rehabilitation or erasure of the conviction on bulletin n°2 from your criminal record)
  • Have been convicted of a crime or misdemeanor constituting an attack on the fundamental interests of the Nation (except in the event of rehabilitation or erasure of the conviction in bulletin n°2 from your criminal record)
  • Have been convicted of an act of terrorism (except in the event of rehabilitation or erasure of the conviction in bulletin no. 2 from your criminal record).

Reference texts

Civil Code: articles 24 to 24-3

Reinstatement of French nationality by declaration (article 24-2)

Civil Code: articles 26 to 26-5

Declarations of nationality

Decree No. 93-1362 of December 30, 1993 relating to declarations of nationality, decisions on naturalization, reinstatement, loss, forfeiture and withdrawal of French nationality.

Yours faithfully,

With my best regards,

20180904 Opinion legale CONDITIONS FOR THE ACQUISITION OF FRENCH NATIONALITY

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