French Citizenship By Marriage

Obtaining French citizenship by marriage allows spouses of French citizens to acquire French citizenship and enjoy all the same rights as native-born French citizens. The path to naturalization provides many advantages but has precise requirements and the application process can also be challenging.

For expert help meeting eligibility requirements, compiling documentation, and successfully becoming a French national, consult with one of our expert attorneys at Total Law. Call our office today on +1 844 290 6312 or message us online to discuss your application.

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    Overview Of The French Citizenship By Marriage

    French citizenship by marriage or certificate of French nationality is a pathway for US citizens to become citizens through marriage to a French citizen.

    The process involves applying for naturalization, which officially recognizes them as french nationals.

    The spouse must possess a residence permit and have an established permanent address in the French territory with their partner.

    Additionally, the spouse seeking citizenship must provide proof of their marital status. This can be done through the French civil status register, which is an official record of births, marriages, and deaths in France.

    During the application process various documents like birth certificates, marriage certificates, passports and proof of residence will need to be submitted to verify the authenticity of the marriage and confirm eligibility for naturalization.

    Only then can you start an application, either through the immigration services or French consulate. As part of the process, an interview may be conducted to assess whether the marriage is legitimate.

    Once approved by the French authorities the spouse will be granted French citizenship. The permit offers the same rights enjoyed by French nationals. Including access to benefits, healthcare facilities and civic responsibilities.

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    Eligibility Requirements Of French Citizenship By Marriage


    To meet the eligibility criteria for French citizenship by marriage, if you’re married to a French citizen, you must meet the following requirements set out by the French government.

    US applicants seeking citizenship by naturalization must have been married to the French national for a minimum of four years. They must also have resided in France continuously with their partner for at least five years prior to applying for citizenship.

    In addition, US applicants must also meet the following conditions:

    • Proficiency in the French language may be a requirement, typically at the B1 level.
    • They must not have any criminal convictions in France or in the United States.
    • Must demonstrate financial independence, meaning they have sufficient means to support themselves and their family in France.
    • Demonstrate an effort to integrate into French society, such as by taking part in cultural activities, and contributing to the community.

    It is also crucial to emphasize the importance of checking and understanding all the requirements before initiating the application process.

    This ensures that all necessary conditions are met, reducing the likelihood of delays, complications or even a rejection.

    Costs and Fees

    When applying for French citizenship by marriage from the US, there are costs associated with an application. Include permit fees, administrative charges, and any other expenses translating the documentation and travel.

    The most common costs include:

    • Application fee for French citizenship by marriage is currently €182.
    • The cost of translating documents can vary, typically around €50 per document.
    • If you choose to work with an immigration lawyer like Total Law to help with an application. You will have to pay legal fees which can vary.
    • There may be other costs, such as travel expenses to and from the Prefecture or Sous-Préfecture for an interview.

    Our immigration team has helped hundreds of cases secure French citizenship by marriage. Let us help you too. Contact Us

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      French Citizenship By Marriage Application Process


      To apply for French citizenship by naturalization if you’re a US citizen married to a French citizen, you must gather all the required documents outlined below and ensure that all documents are translated into French by a certified translator before you begin the application process.

      Step 1: Gather Required Documentation

      Before initiating the application process, ensure you have gathered all necessary documentation to support your eligibility. This includes:

      • Submit a valid passport, or birth certificate.
      • Submit an official marriage certificate from France or the US, duly translated into French.
      • Provide evidence of continuous residence in France for at least five years, such as rental agreements, utility bills, or bank statements.
      • Provide proof of French language proficiency, typically at the B1 level.
      • Submit a clean criminal record certificate from France and the US.
      • Submit evidence of sufficient means to support yourself and your family in France.

      Step 2: Complete the Application Form

      Once all the required documents are gathered, the next step is to download and complete the application form for French citizenship by marriage.

      This form is available on the French Ministry of the Interior website. Ensure you provide accurate and complete information, including your personal details, marital status, residence history, and language proficiency.

      Step 3: Submit the Application

      After completing the application form and ensuring that all necessary documents are in order, submit them to the relevant Prefecture or Sous-Préfecture in France. You may have to schedule an appointment at the local prefecture or consulate in French or the US.

      Step 4: Schedule an Interview

      In some cases, you may be required to attend an interview as part of the application process. During this interview, you may be asked about your relationship with your spouse, how you plan to integrate into society, and knowledge of French culture and customs.

      Step 5: Pay the Application Fee

      Upon scheduling an interview, you will be notified of the application fee. It is currently €182 and must be paid before your interview.

      Step 6: Awaiting Decision

      After the interview, the Prefecture or Sous-Préfecture will review your application and make a decision on whether to grant you French citizenship.

      • Potential Processing Times

        The actual processing time for a French naturalization application can vary depending on several factors such as the applicant’s location and your individual circumstances.

        On average, it takes approximately 18 months to 2 years from the time of application submission to receive a decision on French citizenship. However, it’s essential to note that timeframes may also differ based on any changes in immigration policies.

        Other reasons include:

        • The complexity of your case, such as those involving criminal records or extended absences from France, may take longer.
        • The workload at the French authorities can affect processing times. It may be slower during French national holidays or periods of peak demand.
        • If you submit in-accurate or in-complete documentation this can lead to longer wait times. So it is vital to carefully check everything before you submit an application.

        If you would like help, consult with one of our expert attorneys at Total Law. Call our office today on +1 844 290 6312 or message us online to discuss your citizenship application.

      What US citizens Should Also Consider


      Once a US citizen successfully applies for citizenship in France, it is vital that they understand their rights and responsibilities as French citizens.

      This includes knowing their rights, fulfilling obligations towards the state and actively participating in duties, like voting in elections. Demonstrating awareness of these aspects forms part of the naturalization process.

      In case you are considering obtaining citizenship through marriage. It is crucial to evaluate how it may impact your current citizenship status.

      While some countries do not permit dual citizenship, US citizens can acquire citizenship with France. However they must meet the necessary eligibility requirements set out above.

      The benefits of becoming a dual citizen of the United States and France include:

      • You can live and work in both countries
      • Vote in both countries (if you are a resident of France)
      • Travel freely between both countries
      • Access the social benefits of both countries
      • Maintain dual nationality even if you divorce your French spouse

      Financial Implications

      Obtaining French citizenship by marriage can also have significant financial implications for US citizens. Firstly, the cost can vary between €250 and €4,000 or even more.

      Moreover, American citizens who become French citizens will need to comply with tax regulations regardless of whether they reside in France or the United States. This could pose a challenge for individuals, particularly those, with substantial assets or income.

      Cultural Implications

      Becoming a French citizen through marriage is a significant step that involves more than just obtaining a legal status in France.

      It also means embracing the French way of life, and speaking the language. Which helps improve communication with fellow French citizens.

      Additionally, participating in French culture involves understanding and appreciating the rich history, art, cuisine, and traditions that make up the fabric of French society.

      Adhering to French laws and customs is also crucial for anyone aspiring to become a French citizen, as it ensures that one respects and abides by the regulations that govern the country.

      This process of integration may require patience and effort, but it is an essential part of becoming a part of the vibrant and diverse French community.

      Legal Implications

      There are a number of legal implications to consider when obtaining French citizenship by marriage. One crucial factor to remember is the status of your US passport. It is imperative to ensure that your passport remains valid throughout the process.

      Additionally, registering with the US government as a dual citizen may be necessary to comply with legal obligations. Understanding and addressing these legal implications is essential for a smooth transition into French citizenship through marriage.

      How Our Total Law Lawyers Can Help You

      If you require assistance with an application for French citizenship by marriage, our experienced immigration attorneys at Total Law can provide specialized support.

      We have in-depth expertise on French nationality regulations to guide eligible applicants seamlessly through the process. Our services include:

      • Evaluate if you meet the eligibility criteria for naturalization
      • Compiling and translating all documentation needed
      • Completing your French citizenship application form accurately
      • Provide regular status updates throughout the application process
      • Liaise with French consular officials on your behalf

      We are dedicated to empowering qualified spouses in legally becoming French citizens. Contact Total Law at +1 844 290 6312 or email to connect with our attorneys. We offer transparent legal guidance to reduce headaches when applying for French nationality.

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                Frequently Asked Questions

                Yes, marrying a French citizen gives you the opportunity to apply for a residence permit. However it’s important to note that this doesn’t guarantee your citizenship. There are criteria and an application process that must be followed to secure it.

                Yes, a US citizen can apply for French citizenship through naturalization after meeting residency and language requirements, among others. The process involves an application, interviews, and demonstrating integration into French society.

                In some cases, individuals with French ancestors may be eligible for citizenship by descent. This typically involves proving the lineage and meeting specific criteria related to the ancestor’s nationality status at the time of emigration.