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Applying for French citizenship through marriage

Last updated May 2023

The criteria

A foreign citizen married to a French national may apply for French citizenship providing they meet certain criteria:

  • You have been married to a French national for at least 5 years (4 years if they have lived in France for 3 years or more or if their French spouse has been uninterruptedly registered on the consulate’s expats list for at least 4 years). They must have retained their French citizenship between the date of your wedding and your application.

  • You have been and are still living together

  • You can prove a sufficient knowledge of spoken and written French language... by means of a qualification or certificate. Your level of French must meet the criteria of B1 or above, which is described as understanding the main elements of a conversation relating to familiar topics, be self-sufficient in most daily situations and being able to talk about common topics and interest or about an event, experience or project in French. A qualification obtained in any French speaking country would work, or you can study and sit the CEFR test.

  • You have no criminal conviction... punishable by a prison sentence of 6 months or longer, nor have you been charged with a crime deemed to represent a threat to the nation or been subject to an expulsion or been forbidden to enter French territory.

The application for french citizenship through marriage

As of May 2023, the list of requested documents as stated by the French government to apply for french citizenship through marriage is as follows (all original documents must be supplied along with a photocopy):

  • 2 x Cerfa forms 15277*04 duly filled in. (I have an english translation available upon request for my translation clients).

  • 2 x recent passport photos

  • Photocopy of the first page of your passport. If you are a citizen of several countries, please include all passports.

  • Photocopy of your French spouse’s current ID card or passport

  • Your birth certificate (integral version) and translation by a certified French translator

  • Your marriage certificate and any previous marriage certificate, along with their translations by a certified French translator

If you have children from a previous marriage living with you, they may also become French at the same time as you acquire French nationality. You’ll need to provide:

  • Their birth certificate (integral version) and translation by a certified French translator

  • Photocopy of their passport

  • Proof that they live with you (custody decision by the court, proof of school/nursery, proof of leave to remain in the UK…)

Your spouse must be registered with the consulate and all their documents be in order, including your Livret de Famille (family passport) showing your marriage and all your children.

  • Photocopy of the Livret de Famille (family passport) pages showing your marriage and the children you have together

You need to provide proof that your spouse is a French national:

  • French birth certificate

  • If only one or none of their parents was French, proof of nationality (CNF, naturalisation decree...)

  • If they were born overseas, birth certificates of both their parents

You need to prove your knowledge of the French language:

  • French qualification level V minimum (brevet des collèges +), or CECRL / DELF / DALF european qualifiation (level B1+), or French knowledge test (TCF spoken and written) or French assessment test (TEF spoken and written)

And finally...

  • A list of all the countries you lived in during the last 10 years

  • Your british ACRO police certificate + apostille and a similar document + apostille/legalisation (as applicable) for any other country you have lived in during the last 10 years

  • Proof that you and your french spouse live together (utility bill showing both your names). No translation needed.

  • An pre-paid A4 enveloppe (special delivery) to your name and address

Send your application by post to the French consulate in London (Consulat général de France, Service de la nationalité, 21Cromwell Road,SW7 2EN LONDON). You will be invited, along with your French spouse, for an interview at the consulate following which the French ministry will then have 12 months to respond to your application

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