Home > Before Leaving > French Law, What you Need to Know Before you Move

French Law, What you Need to Know Before you Move

By: Maggie Lonsdale BA (hons) - Updated: 27 Aug 2019 | comments*Discuss
 
Law Inheritance Succession Mortgage

In order to make your new life in France go as smoothly as possible, it is a good idea to prepare your legal and official affairs before you move.

There are a number of companies who are more than happy to help you with paperwork such as opening bank accounts, getting car insurance and health insurance. They are often rather expensive tough, as they tend to cater for cash rich, time poor clientele. If you fit into this category, you may find their services a godsend, although if you are more likely to have to be careful with your money, you will be perfectly able to deal with these matters yourself.

Using a Professional Relocation Company

If you chose to use a relocation company for your financial affairs, they will usually have a number of companies and services that they are affiliated to – they are able to get you discounts on standard prices and often provide a phone number for any issues you may have, which can be very helpful in your first few months when there is no much to deal with. These organisations tend to know the area well and can suggest all manner of helpful tips – where is the best paint to be found and what schools have the best reputation – information that you would probably not be able to find out unless you were friends with someone ‘in the know’.

Dealing with the Paperwork

However, using these services can also make you feel disconnected from your new life – there is a certain satisfaction in traipsing off with your documentation to sort out a phone connection or to find a dentist. You will have to find the right words or gestures to make yourself understood and you will invariably get to know your town in the process. Accept that the red tape and dealing with bureaucratic rules is all part of your new life, and then it won’t seem so annoying when you have queued for an hour only to be told you do not have the right documentation!

If you chose to do all the paperwork and legal documentation yourself, you must be prepared that it is all rather frustrating. Ultimately satisfying, but very frustrating! The most important legal information for you to be aware of before you make the move to your new life in France will regard your French property, as this will invariably be your most expensive possession. There are two key differences between French and UK law in this matter, although you are advised to seek expert advice before signing or committing to anything.

Inheritance Law Differences

The two key differences relate to succession law and the return of your deposit. The succession law is different in that it is not assumed that, in the event of your death, your property does not automatically go to your next of kin. Unlike in the UK, your property, or indeed your proportion of the property, automatically goes in equal amounts to your children. If you are married and have children together, this is less difficult to change than if perhaps you and your partner have been married before and there are a number of children from earlier relationships. You will need to get a detailed document drawn up to make sure that your house is left to the person or people you want it to.

Mortgage Clause

You also need to bear in mind that you can lose your deposit if you have not made sure there is an additional clause in your compromis. If you are getting a mortgage for the property, you will need to add a mortgage clause that says your purchase is subject to you obtaining a mortgage, or otherwise you will still be required to pay the deposit, often 10% of the purchase price.

You might also like...
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice..
Hi there! I am curious about filling out the paperwork for french citizenship WITH a criminal record - this would be a DUI case. I am curious whether there is certain criteria for cases like that. Or are they somewhat rejected the visa straight away
Leah - 27-Aug-19 @ 7:36 AM
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice...
Title:
(never shown)
Firstname:
(never shown)
Surname:
(never shown)
Email:
(never shown)
Nickname:
(shown)
Comment:
Validate:
Enter word:
Topics
Latest Comments
  • Leah
    Re: French Law, What you Need to Know Before you Move
    Hi there! I am curious about filling out the paperwork for french citizenship WITH a criminal record -…
    27 August 2019
  • stewart
    Re: French Fashion
    We are a family of two and intend to move to the Loire valley area within the next 6 months. Can anybody give us a rough estimate of the cost of…
    25 June 2019
  • henryallan1450
    Re: Cost of Living in France
    i would ask you than i wish live south of France because i do like front Sea view very much but i feel bit worried about high rentals…
    29 April 2019
  • Natalie
    Re: Making Friends in France
    Hi. I moved to France last summer and am looking to make English speaking friends or join clubs in the area. I live in Pissy-Poville, a…
    27 January 2019
  • Natalie
    Re: Resources For Expats in France
    I moved to Pissy-Poville (13 kms outside Rouen) last summer and am looking for English speaking clubs and activities - anything…
    27 January 2019
  • manulang
    Re: Making Friends in France
    Halo. I wish you can help me , i want to make friend in France
    15 November 2018
  • Juliette
    Re: Cost of Living in France
    I have lived in France since 2016 and the cost of living is very high - the utilities are ridiculous the cost of insurance , house car…
    29 August 2018
  • andy
    Re: The Role of the Notaire in Buying French Property
    I sold my French house in Jan 2017. It could have been sold in Dec but there was a 'hold-up' in…
    26 April 2018
  • Nana
    Re: Making Friends in France
    Its my desire to learn new culture, meet new friends all over the world, especially France. I shall be happy if your services could be…
    5 February 2018
  • NewLifeInFrance
    Re: Planning Ahead, a Move to France Won't Happen Overnight
    Exmoorgirl - Your Question:Hi there, I am a 42 year old single mother of two children aged 6…
    10 January 2018