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Documents for French nationality

Posted by szozu - Created: 14 years ago
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10 replies (Showing replies: 1 to 10)

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Posted by szozu - 14 years ago

Ellen,

I can't believe they're making me jump through all sorts of flaming hoops that you managed to avoid! My husband's parents were both born in France, yet they are asking for their marriage certificate as well as that of my parents!

I called the two UK numbers that the Marseille consulate gave me and everyone I spoke to was very helpful. The marriage documents were paid for by credit card and they took the search details over the phone. For the divorce decree, they told me I would have to write to them and send a cheque for GBP 20. Luckily, I have a friend in the UK, otherwise the latter would have proved a bit difficult. I've discovered that one can send funds internationally via the post office, using a Mandat International--much cheaper than sending a bank cheque through Barclays.

Lana

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Posted by Ellen7-187820 - 14 years ago

Lana, I was born in Hertfordshire and I got my birth certificate from the county site (or at least my dad got it for me, he had already got my great grandfather’s from them) I don’t know if every county has a site and I don’t think there is a centralized one. If by pure chance you need the Herfordshire one, I’ve got the address.

I’ve always found the Marseille consulate very helpful too. Of course, you could always ask the embassy in paris.

My list looks like a more recent one than yours. At least the stamp price is in euros and I only have to provide one enveloppe. There is absolutely nothing at all on it (not even on the crossed out bits) about my parents. My birth certificate doesn't have their dates or places of birth or anything. (it has got their names)

We had to contact two different mairies because we were married in Normandy and my husband was born in Metz. At least we didn’t need to get his parents birth certificates because they were born in Toulon and Brittany and I avoided the casier judiciaire by being in France for more than 10 years. (in fact, it’s a good reason for waiting)

When I handed the papers in, I was told that I would probably get a reply some time next summer.

Ellen

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Posted by Joelle-187653 - 14 years ago

You need to provide them with a birth certificate showing the name, place and date of birth of your parents.If it isn't possible, send them your own birth certificate and also your parents' birth certificates. I know, because my husband had to go through all this.Joëlle

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Posted by szozu - 14 years ago

Ellen,
Do you happen to remember what site you used to get the documents from the UK? I was given two phone numbers to call by the consulate in Marseille (the consulate in Nice apparently doesn't answer their phone!), but wasn't informed that there was a site I could use.

My list, with crossed out and highlighted sections, is from the Tribunal in Cannes. It apparently hasn't been updated for awhile, as the instructions demand: 2 enveloppes timbrées à FRS. et libelées à votre adresse. My husband's comment was, "Well, you'll have to go to a museum to find the stamps!"

The part about information regarding my parents says:

NOUS PRECISER SUR PAPIER LIBRE les noms, prenoms date et lieu de naissance de vos parents, le nom de jeune fille de votre mère (parents de l'èpoux étranger uniquement).
Si possible nous produire leur acte de mariage ou à défaut leurs actes de naissance.

It's the "si possible bit" that can be subject to interpretation. I may call the German Consulate again, to find out if they were registering all marriages at the time my parents got married. It's a special situation, as they were living in a refugee camp. This is getting a bit out of hand because I've already phoned three different consulates, with the potential of expanding to a total of five(!!!)--not to mention having to contact the FBI for the "cahier judiciare" for my end of things and we've contacted three different mairies for my husband's side. I cringe to think what the translation fees are going to cost.

Did they give you an indication of how long it would take to process your paperwork? Someone once mentioned how nice everyone was when they applied for French nationality. They said they were given the impression that the French seemed pleased and flattered that someone from a well-to-do Western country would request it.

Lana

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Posted by Ellen7-187820 - 14 years ago

Lana, I got my British birth certificate through the internet too. I thought I was going to have to go there or at least spend hours on the phone but no, it was easy and really quick. But I did have to pay.

When I gave in my papers last month, the lady there was very nice and efficient. She checked over the list and made sure I had everything asked for. I asked her about the "mr & mrs" problem and she said that when people didn't manage to get the right paperwork but had obviously tried, they just asked them to do a "declaration sur honneur" so maybe you can try that for the things you can't get.

I'm suprised they even want your parents' birth certificates, they didn't want my parents'. You would think at least that there would be only one set of necessary documents regardless where you are doing the asking (I am doing mine through the Tribunal at Aix) I had a very official looking yellow paper with the whole list on it and bits crossed of when they didn't apply (i.e. the casier judiciaire) i had to take it with me when i handed it all in.

Ellen

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Posted by szozu - 14 years ago

Yes Ellen, I am applying for nationality through marriage. Thanks for your idea about asking the German Consulate to provide a paper saying that the birth certificate as provided is the only type available--though you'd think that they would know this by now! The lady there was extremely nice and even offered to fax me the text of the letter for requesting the birth certificate, as I don't speak German.

As to the papers from my husband's side; it's a bit difficult as both his parents are deceased and they had both remarried, resulting in the remaining livret de famille having his mother listed with her second husband. I was surprised at how simple it was to request things like my husband's birth certificate from Paris and our acte de mariage from Nice. The requests can be made online and I have to give credit to the French for being so organized.

As to providing my parent's birth certificates--that would mean dealing with the Ukrainian administration and would probably be impossible to do without going there, spending a month each in their respective places of birth and repeatedly beating my head agaisnt the wall--though I may try calling their embassy in Paris just for fun!

Lana 

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Posted by Ellen7-187820 - 14 years ago

Lana, I’m in the middle of the nationality thing myself at the moment. I’ve collected together all the paperwork and given it in and I’m going to do the official bit in front of the judge in a couple of weeks. If your husband is French, are you asking for nationality through marriage too? I wasn’t asked for anything about my parents at all but I needed photocopies of my husband’s parents’ ID cards and their livret de famille. I couldn’t see why, since all that information is on his birth certificate already. The most difficult bit was finding two documents mentioning "Mr and Mrs" or "Mr or Mrs"

Seekers’ answer more or less covers it on the difference between the extrait and the copie integrale. Depending on how pleasant the German consulate is; you could ask them to do a official looking paper explaining that this is the one and only form. The British consulate did it for me for the casier judiciaire when I needed one to take a concours. I didn’t need one this time as I’ve been in France for more than 10 years.

It is a bit frustrating having to pay for a new birth certificate every time I need one because they always have to be less than 3 months old even though British ones don’t change. Of course, the French system is really useful when you’re doing research into family history.

Good luck and bon courage

Ellen

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Posted by szozu - 14 years ago

Thanks, Seeker. I also can't get over how, in spite of my husband being born in France, they also want his father's birth certificate and the "acte de mariage" of his parents. Since his parents are no longer alive and no one knows where or when they were married, we are hoping that it will have been added onto the birth certificate.

The requirements are at least reasonable in saying the following regarding information about my parents: "Si possible nous produire leur acte de mariage ou à défaut leurs actes de naissance." Of course, as my parents history involves fleeing from the bolsheviks and all kinds of other upheavals suffered during the war, this is "pas possible." They were lucky enough to escape with their lives!

Lana

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Posted by Seeker-184579 - 14 years ago

Lana,

I once had a similar problem.  I believe they mean a "full" copy ('extrait avec filiation', i.e. with parentage shown) as opposed to the 'extrait' which is simply a shorter version.  This of course refers to French standards, but some countries other than France also supply longer or shorter versions of birth certificates, e.g. the UK. 

Note that all these birth 'certificates' are in fact 'extracts' (or copies) from a Birth Register, including those issued in France! (France now supply computerised versions of birth certificates out of their central database in Nantes, either long or short versions, on demand). So don't be daunted by that word 'extrait'.

What the French authorities will most often look for is the most complete version of a certified copy of a Birth Register entry that can be obtained. By 'certified', I mean it has to come from an issuing authority, i.e. it is an official copy, not a photocopy of any sort. If this certified copy is dated at all, then they will also require that the date stamped (or written) on it is not more than 3 months old (regardless of whether none of the information on it could have changed since birth or not - crazy, I know, but...). 

So, if the German Consulate is correct in saying that there is only one format they provide in Germany, then that will do - your job is to convince the nice French lady behind the counter that there is no other alternative possible. 

I once tried to explain to an incredulous French civil servant that the British authorities do not record the date and place of birth of one's parents, nor the time of birth when registering a birth.  'But why not?' was the question. 'Because they don't, tout simplement', I replied. 'Well, they should...'  was the indignant retort!  I felt like saying: 'Mais oui, vous avez raison, bien sûr! La prochaine fois que je verrai la reine Elizabeth, je lui demanderai d'instituer une nouvelle loi de votre part' but thought better of it... 

Give it another 50 years or so, and I'm sure that they'll agree on a European standard for these things...

Seeker J

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Posted by szozu - 14 years ago

Nope, they don't mean official copy in this case--that's what they wanted for my marriage and it was easily obtained from Germany where they (with the usual German efficiency) provided a single birth certificate written in nine(!!!) languages which clearly reads "extrait des registres de l'état civil concernant une naissance." The nice lady at the German Consulate said that this is the only type of birth certificate they provide, since unlike the French, they don't ammend information to a person's birth certificate.

Lana