First Renewal of Long-Stay Visa (Titre de Séjour) in France


         Having the carte de séjour in France means a lot of things so I was really counting the days until my rendezvous for the renewal of my long stay visa (visa long séjour valant titre de sejour). It is not just an assurance of my stay here nor its legality but it’s also a manifestation that I’ve survived my first year here in France.

Honestly, going back to the Philippines came to mind for countless times when I thought about the language difficulty and the employment possibilities here. Gladly, I’ve made it so I’m going to share how the first renewal of my titre de séjour went and all the other things that I’ve learned along the way.

During my convocation at the Office de l’immigration et de l’integration, I was told to ask for a rendezvous at the Préfecture de Police 4-5 months before the date of expiration of my long-stay visa (vie privée et familiale) which was on 02 August 2017. In the first week of March, I called them and was scheduled to appear at the Préfecture de Police at the Ile de la Cité on 29 August 2017 since I live in Paris, after the date that my visa expired. 

Few weeks after the call, I received the convocation from the Préfecture with the form and the list of all the documents that I must provide. So in addition to the photocopy of my passport, visa and OFII Vignette, I had to add a copy of my convocation in my wallet in case that I will be asked of my papers for my stay here. During this time, I was also deleted in the list of “demandeur d’emploi” of Pôle Emploi.

I have got excitement and anxiety when I went to the Préfecture de Police - excited to have my visa renewed and anxious that a problem might arise.

Anyway, the following are the documents to be submitted for the renewal of long-stay visa (valant titre de séjour) for a spouse of a French national and for those who came here through family reunification or regroupement familial:

COMMON DOCUMENTS:

These are documents that are common to Conjoint de Français (Spouse of a French national) and Regroupement Familial (Family Reunification) and other  types of titre de séjour:

     ·         Proof of legal stay

 Valid temporary residence card (carte de séjour temporaire) or Long Stay Visa (visa de long séjour valant titre de séjour) validated by the Office de l’Immigration et de l’Intégration (OFII) for spouses of French Nationals or members of a family who entered through Family Reunification or “regroupement familial”.


     ·             Proof of Civil Status and Nationality


-      Passport (copy of pages relating to civil status, date of validity, and entry stamps and visas)
-      Birth certificate with filiations or a complete certified copy of the birth certificate when the application for renewal is based on a “visa de long séjour valant titre de séjour

     ·            Proof of Domicile or Residence dated within the past three (3) months

-       Utility bills (electricity, gas, water, landline telephone or internet); leasing agreement within the last 3 months (bail de location); rent receipts (quittance de loyer); or taxe d’habitation (residence tax).
*** I am quite lucky because upon my arrival here in France, we immediately processed the inclusion of my name in our utility bills so I had these documents already.
-       If staying in a hotel: certificate of accommodation and bill of the last month
-       If it’s a private accommodation (staying at someone’s place or institution): signed and dated certificate of the host, copy of his identity card or residence card, and property deeds or acte de propriété (or residence tax statements; copy of the leasing agreement of the host; or utility bills of the host)

      ·        Three (3) passport-size identity photos ( 3.5 x 4.5 cm)

     ·    Proof of tax payment and Stamp Duty (l’acquittement de la taxe sur le titre de séjour et du droit de timbre) to be given upon claiming the residence card.

*** A text message will be sent to you stating the date and time when you can claim your carte de séjour as well as the amount of tax to be paid. For spouses of French nationals, the amount was 269€. The stamps or timbres can be bought at the Tabac or at the site of the Préfecture de Police. I was hoping it was the same as the tax paid during the validation at OFII but it’s different so we have to shell out some more bucks.

     ·     Medical certificate issued by the OFII to be given upon claiming your residence card.

*** I’ve given it during my rendezvous, so they did not ask for it anymore when I claimed my carte de séjour.

SPECIFIC DOCUMENTS:

         Conjoint de Français (Spouse)

·        Proof of Marriage: Complete authenticated copy of the certificate of marriage (copie intégrale de l’acte de marriage) which is not older than three (3) months.

*** I had a problem with this because the copy I provided was a bit old. It was issued in 2016 which I used when I applied for my visa. The list from the Préfecture did not state that the acte de marriage must be issued within the last 3 months. The lady who entertained me told me to provide a copy of the recent acte de marriage as soon as possible and to give it at the reception desk without need of appointment. My husband and I got married in the Philippines so we had to make a request online of a copy from the Ministère des affaires étrangères , the one which handles all events relating to civil status abroad. Please click here. We have waited around 10 days to have the copy of our marriage certificate.

·        Proof of Nationality of the French spouse: Valid national Identity card (carte nationale d’identité) or a certificate of French nationality which is less than 6 months.

·        Living together: Solemn joint declaration that you and your spouse are living together and all documents which could prove it (leasing agreement or utility bills with both names, bank account, etc. except if the community of life is ruptured by reason of:

-              Domestic and family violence that could be justified by any means such as complaints filed, divorce decree, conviction of spouse for this reason, testimonies, medical certificates, etc.)

-              Death of spouse

*** At the Préfecture they will give the form of joint declaration that you and your spouse are living together for you to sign. So your spouse must be there or if your spouse is not with you, you can come back there anytime to sign the document. The processing of your documents however will start when you’ve completed the required documents.

·        Solemn declaration that you are not living a polygamous life should you come from a state which allows polygamy.

Family Reunification or Regroupement Familial

·        Carte de Séjour temporaire (Temporary Residence Card), carte de séjour pluriannuelle (multi-annual card) or the french residence card of the spouse.

·        If the applicant is the spouse : Solemn joint declaration that you and your spouse are living together and all documents which could prove it (leasing agreement or utility bills with both names, bank account, etc. except if the community of life is ruptured by reason of:

-              Domestic and family violence that could be justified by any means such as complaints filed, divorce decree, conviction of spouse for this reason, testimonies, medical certificates, etc.)
-              Death of spouse

·        Solemn declaration that you are not living a polygamous life should you come from a state which allows polygamy.

On the day of the rendezvous at the Préfecture

         I went to the Préfecture de Police at 3 Rue De Lutèce (place Louis-lépine), Paris 75004 for my appointment at 10 in the morning. I arrived there at 9:30 am and queued up to register and get a number. My number was called around 11am because there were plenty of people already before me.

            The person who will examine your documents will ask you few questions but those were not really big deal. It is better if you will be the one answering the questions yourself and not ask your companion or your husband. Well, she told my husband to let me answer the questions and I've heard other applicants for reneal saying the same thing. They will just ask normal things to verify if they have written correctly your name or your address because they will give you a récipissé de demande de carte de séjour or acknowledgement of your application to renew your residence permit. So, do not be so stressed about it. The récipissé is valid for 2 months while waiting for your carte de séjour.

            I brought plenty of supporting documents like my work contract, a copy of my driver’s license and carte vitale, a copy of all the documents I got from OFII and the certificates of the civic formation. The lady who evaluated my papers took all the copies of the documents. She then told me that I will have 10 years and that I would stay “tranquil” during this time.

When are you going to receive your carte de séjour?

            In the first week of October, I received a text message stating the date when I can claim my carte de séjour and the amount to be paid for the taxes. I went to the same Préfecture on 26 October 2017 and presented the proof of payment of tax and stamp duty which I did online at http://timbres.ants.gouv.fr/. We can also get the timbre at the Tabac. I check the data in the card if those were correct to avoid unpleasant surprises. And voila, I got my card and I will be renewing this in 10 years.

CONVERSATION

12 comments:

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    1. Hello, I've just seen your comment. I've gone through the process last 28 August 2017. The Préfécture of Police sent me a list of documents to be presented with the instruction. Thank you so much for the comment.

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