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Paperwork = Hell

3 comments
Well here I am in France and stuck in paperwork hell. It started out OK I guess for the pile of red tape we had to plow through. I was beginning to relax and think this would go OK...then...they told me my birth certificate and divorce papers weren't adequate. Seems I didn't get the proper apostille attached. OK. So I sent off to the US for the proper apostilles...one I'm still waiting for. THEN I get a letter from the police captain here, requiring me to come to the police station for an inquiry. Scary stuff. D calms me down, makes a million calls to friends , etc and comes back with " It's no big deal just making sure we aren't getting a fake marriage". Hmmm, OK. so we go and have this nice man (yes, he was very nice...taken from someone that cant speak French) and he asks D a million questions and then tells us we have been going about it in the wrong direction and we have to go to the Prefecture and apply for a Carte De Sejour BEFORE we get married. SO off we go to the prefectures office. After standing in line for a gazillion years we finally get to a window and talk to a young woman who tells us NO thats not the correct information. 1. They cant keep us from getting married for that reason. 2. I can apply for my Carte De Sejour AFTER the marriage BUT I will have to reside in France for 6 months and have my name on all the utilities, etc. She suggested I pop over to England for a weekend to get my visa stamped and then return so I would still be in France legally having renewed my 3 month stay by leaving. So we return feeling much relieved. D calls the landlord who agrees to put my name on all the old rent receipts since July and also on the contract and he calls the cable, etc and puts my name on the bills also. We both breath a sigh of relief and think we have it all figured out. Then two days ago D gets up in the morning and sits here reading the news as he does most mornings...and turns to tell me he just read some very bad news. They just removed the line from the law saying you can get your Carte De Sejour after residing here for 6 months. SO I'm screwed. I supposedly cant get one now without a long term visa. TO get one of those I have to return to the US. We cant afford a ticket to the US. It was hard enough to come up with the money for us both to travel to England to get my passport stamped. I really don't know what to do next and it is causing us both huge anxiety. I feel so bad for D as he is just beginning his 4th year of college and has been accepted in a second college to get a masters in English Language at the same time as his Computer Sciences Masters. How on earth can he concentrate to do his studies when he's worried about whether I have to leave or not. Any words from the wise out there? Suggestions on what to do?
author profile image
Abdelghafour

3 comments

  1. Sorry to hear this. I dont have any advice as my situation is a bit different. I hope you can sort things out without having to return first

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  2. As I see you figured out, you should be able to get married anyway. Congratulations on the upcoming wedding! Once you are married, you are entitled, en plein droit (meaning that you might have to provide heaps of paperwork, but you don't have to worry about being turned down), to a long-stay carte de séjour. If you need help (moral support? tea and cookies? someone to talk with?) let me know. I'm in a similar situation and living in Bordeaux centre.

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  3. Let me know what ends up happening as I'm in the same position as you. I'm getting married in February. I hope I don't have to return to Australia for a new CDS, I can't really afford to..

    Good luck to both of us.

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