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Dual Nationality GB/FR ???

Posted by Sophie-182589 - Created: 16 years ago
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6 replies (Showing replies: 1 to 6)

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Posted by Ellen7-187820 - 16 years ago

Sophie, I'm British and I've been living in France for the last 12 years. I'm married to a Frenchman and I've never bothered with French nationality because as an EU national I have almost all the same rights. A few weeks ago I decided that I may as well get myself French nationality. I have nothing to lose by doing it. like you the main reason was to able to vote. I'm a civil servant but I can't chose my minister.

My husband rang the Tribunal de Grand Instance (in our case Aix en Provence) and asked, and a (wait for it...) very friendly and helpful person told him everything we would need and sent us a list of all the paper work. The list wasn't as long as I had feared the most complicated bits are going to be getting my birth certificate translated by an official translator and finding photocopies of my in laws' livret de famille. I'm lucky in that since I've been in France for more than 10 years, I don't need to prove I haven't got a criminal record in Britain.

hope this helps


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Posted by Seeker-184579 - 16 years ago

Well, yes, I see, in that case it does make sense...

Pre-requisites are slightly different if you're married to a Frenchman, see here.  Just don't separate within 12 months of your application, they say..!

Best of luck with that.



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Posted by Sophie-182589 - 16 years ago

Thanks for the information, it's very helpful. I think I should qualify, I'm married to a French man, am bilingual, have been living and working here for 5 years and own property here, all that and no criminal record.

As to the question, why do it? I would like to be able to vote in France and not just at a local level, as I aim on staying in France for good, it seems to make sense. On a more personal level, I feel as much French as I do English, and probably lead a more French than English life, I would just like my nationality to reflect my feelings.

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Posted by wendy-179831 - 16 years ago

And further to Seeker's link and other post, have a look here.

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Posted by Seeker-184579 - 16 years ago

Is there a law against acquiring dual nationality? (in case you're wondering! :-)

Actually, yes! My understanding (but I'm no lawyer, mind) is that those European countries that have signed the Strasbourg treaty of May 6th 1963 - notably Germany, Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Italy, Luxembourg, Norway, Netherlands and Sweden - do not allow the acquisition of the new nationality without loss of the old one (with some exceptions in the case of Italy and Netherlands). This is basically to prevent people from acquiring dual nationality, but as far as I know, the UK and France, for example, are not amongst them. The UK recognises dual nationality. In the case of France, you may ask to lose your French nationality when you acquire another, but you don't automatically lose it...


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Posted by Seeker-184579 - 16 years ago

Hello Sophie,

Well, if you weren't born in France and are not married to nor intending to marry a Frenchman and you don't already have at least one French parent, it is possible to acquire French nationality by naturalisation, but this is not an automatic right.

Full details can found here in this link.  No apologies for the information being in French, since having a "sufficient knowledge" of the French language is a pre-requisite!!!! 

Basically, you need to have lived in France for the last 5 years (reduced to 2 yers if you have successfully completed a higher education course in France) and you have to be considered as being (I love it!) of "de bonne vie et moeurs" i.e. you have not been convicted of a serious crime.

Having said this, I'm wondering why you would want to?  I can't see much advantage in having French nationality over and above avoiding having to renew your Carte de Séjour now and again - within Europe, my guess is that your right to live and work in France isn't going to go away in a hurry...

Hope this helps.

Seeker [