(the misadventures of an expatriate corporate dropout)
Monday, July 20, 2009
I am no longer classified as a "visiteur" to France via my Carte de Sejour.
I applied for a revised residency card, allowing me to own a business and have an income ... or work independently. In order to receive this, I had to complete paperwork regarding my business plan, projected income, resources to support the business, etc.
I had to provide attestations from my bank and pictures of my inventory. Several trips to the prefecture were required as I either did not understand the requirements fully or additional documentation was requested. In addition, I had two meetings with the Chambre de Metiers to sort things out further.
Le monsieur at the prefecture has been nothing but cordial and helpful. We reached a stumbling block mid-way ... the chambre de metier would not issue my SIRET number without a carte de sejour change to commerçant / professionel and the prefecture would not change my carte de sejour without a SIRET number! After my 3rd trip to the prefecture, he took pity upon me. Excusing himself, he disappeared for about 20 minutes ... he spoke with Madame at the Chambre de Metier and convinced her she could issue the number.
I immediately called and set an appointment. She too was nothing but kind during our meeting, very curious about my new home and activities. Returning to the prefecture, le monsieur decided I had waited long enough. He disappeared again and returned with my temporary Carte de Sejour ... which is typically mailed to the mairie. From that moment, I could conduct business.
But in my mind nothing was official until last Friday ... when my postal carrier delivered my letter from the mairie, summoning me to retrieve my new carte de sejour. Almost as good as my new status is the fact that I have a new, up-to-date photo, minus several chins!!!
I now have my SIRET number, a new Carte de Sejour approved for my second year and commerçant / professionel status.
With this change, it is also possible for me to receive my Carte Vitale, which is the French health care card. My taxes paid will also contribute towards a small retirement fund.
um regarding the carte vitale ... anyone out there have some good tips for applying / receiving? my next residency project awaits!
All in all, telling you I am quite satisfied, trés contente, would be a hell of an understatement!