In Episode 1 of Profiles in Franceformation, I spoke with my guest Harriet Welty-Rochefort about her life in France, and we talked about how easy it was for her to get work and a French residency permit as an American in France in the late 1960s. However, despite living in France, she was unable to become a naturalized French citizen until 1996, when the US changed a law that stripped US citizens of their citizenship if they became naturalized citizens of a foreign country.
In this bonus episode, I talk about how changes to US law have enabled Americans to gain passports abroad, and the process of becoming a French citizen after living in France.
- The recurring theme we’ll cover about what makes someone living in France “French enough” to “deserve” to become a naturalized French citizens
- What the actual requirements are for becoming French through marriage or “by decree”: the residency, language, income, and integration requirements you’ll have to fulfil if you want to one day apply.
- Why you’ll want to have a vision of applying for naturalization *before* you apply for your first French visa.
- The benefits of having French or even EU citizenship, and why Harriet might have been able to pursue different career options had she been able to become a naturalized French citizen earlier in her life.
- Why gaining French (or another) citizenship is the first step towards renouncing your US (or other) citizenship
- Which French visa types can be cumulated and count towards your minimum residency requirement (usually 5 years) before you can apply for naturalization
- Why student, visitor, and temporary work visa types often do NOT provide a path to residency or naturalization
- Which visa types you must have to go through the naturalization request process
- Where to find out more information on forging a path to becoming a French citizen.