Multidimension desk:

Exceptional residence permit – temporary worker or employee

From now on, foreign nationals working in professions figuring on the “list of occupations or areas in short supply” will be eligible for “temporary worker (travailleur temporaire)” or “employee (salarié)” residence permits, for a period of one year.

To qualify, foreign workers must meet the following conditions:

  • have worked in a job in demand for at least 12 months, consecutive or otherwise, over the last 24 months
  • at the time of application, be employed in a job on the list of occupations or areas in short supply
  • have been resident in France for an uninterrupted period of at least 3 years.

The list of occupations and areas in short supply will be updated each year. Currently, it is assumed that the list from the order of April 1, 2021 will be followed until the publication of the new list.

Prefects will have discretionary powers to grant the title. The perfect concerned will examine the reality and nature of the professional activity by any means, and other elements such as:

  • social and family integration
  • respect for public order
  • integration into French society and adherence to the principles of the Republic (freedom of expression and conscience, gender equality, the motto and symbols of the Republic, etc.).

The issue of this document will be accompanied by a work permit, in the form of a secure document. In these cases, the foreign national cannot be held to have entered the country illegally.

If the foreign worker has been the subject of a conviction, incapacity or disqualification listed in bulletin no. 2 of the criminal record, he or she will be excluded from the regularisation process.

The prefect may refuse to issue this permit: 

  • foreign nationals who have failed to comply with the obligation to leave French territory
  • Foreign nationals who have fraudulently obtained false documents.

These provisions are subject to an experimental period until December 31, 2026.

Role of the employer:

This new regularisation procedure does not involve any mandatory participation by the employer. The initiative now rests with the worker.

Compliance by the employer with labour and social legislation will be verified during the procedure.

Employers’ obligations in terms of French language training for their foreign employees have been reinforced.

Language skills:

At present, these residence permits, generally valid from 1 to 4 years, are issued on the sole condition of having completed a French language training course as part of the republican integration contract, but there is no obligation to do so.

In future, however, foreigners applying for their first multi-annual residence permit will be required to have a minimum knowledge of the French language (level A 2). This measure will come into force following a decree, by early 2026 at the latest.

To know more about Immigration in France, visit our ‘IMMIGRATION INFO’ page