France Through The Eyes of a Russian Lawyer (private notes)

I have lived in France for 20 years, and Russian clients often ask me questions both legal and purely domestic. The answers to them form the basis of this article. So, I am often asked whether it is easy for an alien to obtain a resident status in the country. Residence status (10-year right of residence with the right of extension) can be obtained after living in France for 5 years minimum. Except in some cases (eg, marriage), this residence is not automatically granted. Several years ago, a so-called "golden" business card was introduced, which automatically gives the holder the right to residency. However, as I know, there are very few applicants for such a card due to a high "property qualification": to obtain such a card, it is required to make a long-term investment in the French economy of 10 million euros, or create 50 jobs.


It should be noted that the unemployment rate in France is about 10%, in connection with this, there is an overabundance of specialists in almost all areas. Nevertheless, highly qualified informatics, builders and medical personnel may be required.


When employing a foreign citizen, a potential employer must ensure that there are no candidates for this place in France. The salary of the employee should be at least 1.5 times the minimum level of the patch (ie, exceeding 2,000 euros gross / month). The green corridor is given to high-paid workers with a salary of 5,000 euros / month. It should be borne in mind that in France at work they speak French, and that lack of command of the language is often an obstacle to hiring. Access of foreign medical workers to the labor market is limited by the requirement of a French diploma. The same applies to representatives of legal professions, although there are some exceptions in this area.


The income level of the French employee is difficult to track - after all, dividends, rental income, various benefits are added to salaries. The wage dispersion is very large - from a minimum guaranteed wage of 1,398 euros for low-skilled workers from any areas, up to 3-4,000 euros for highly skilled workers, and over 6,000 euros for managers of small and medium-sized enterprises (meaning a monthly salary for a full working day with a working week of 35 hours). Over 15,000 euros a month are earned by the heads of large enterprises. The same tendency is traced in the salaries of officials. There are exceptions. Thus, the president of Areva, which resigned in 2011, received an annual gross of 1 million euros, not counting premiums.


Food prices by French standards are quite affordable, most of the population purchases them in supermarkets. On the market, the products are usually fresh and better, but more expensive.


Accommodation in the center of Paris is very expensive - 500-700 euros / month for an apartment of 25 m2, 2 000 euros / month for an apartment of 60 m2. On the periphery and in the provinces the prices are on the order of others: for 700 euros you can completely rent a 3-room apartment.


Meals for a family of 3 people cost 300-1000 euros per month.


Medicine in France is almost free, because paid (including medicines) through a general social insurance fund and private mutual assistance funds. However, the amount of compulsory and additional contributions from working people to these funds is constantly growing. For example, a monthly contribution to a private mutual support fund exceeds 100 euros for those who want to have full coverage of medical expenses.


Subscription for the Internet costs 30 euros / month. Subscription for mobile communication - from 50 euros / month. for a limited number of calls. However, at the beginning of the year, a new mobile operator, Free Mobile, started to operate in France, which for a subscription of 20 euros / month. allows unlimited calls to any phones in France and the US, and to landlines in Western and Central Europe. This operator has made a real revolution in the world of mobile communication, and to it the subscribers of three other operators, who previously held a monopoly on unjustifiably high prices, are switching massively.



The company's income tax in France is high and is 33.33%. At a small profit (up to 38,120 euros) the rate of 15% is applied.

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