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Survival Home in Paris

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Summertime Blues

September 2022

Well, I’m a gonna raise a fuss, I’m gonna raise a holler
About workin’ all summer just to try an’ earn a dollar
Everytime I call my baby, to try to get a date
My boss says, no dice, son, you gotta work late
Sometimes I wonder what I’m gonna do
‘Cause there ain’t no cure for the summertime blues
Well, my mom an papa told me, son, you gotta make some money
If you want to use the car to go ridin’ next sunday
Well I didn’t go to work, told the boss I was sick
Now you can’t use the car ’cause you didn’t work a lick
Sometimes I wonder what I’m gonna do
‘Cause there ain’t no cure for the summertime blues
I’m gonna take two weeks, gonna have a vacation
I’m gonna take my problem to the United Nation
Well I called my congressman and he said quote
“I’d like to help you son, but you’re too young to vote”
Sometimes I wonder what I’m gonna do
‘Cause there ain’t no cure for the summertime blues
Well, I’m a gonna raise a fuss, I’m gonna raise a holler
About workin’ all summer just to try an’ earn a dollar
Sometimes I wonder what I’m gonna do
‘Cause there ain’t no cure for the summertime blues
Yeah, sometimes I wonder what I’m gonna do
‘Cause there ain’t no cure for the summertime blues
No, there ain’t no cure for the summertime blues

The song “Summertime Blues” was recorded by the American rock and rockabilly artist Eddie Cochran and written by Cochran and his manager, Jerry Capehart. It was released in August 1958, originally as a single B-side..

Out of all the weeks I was supposed to be on vacation, I was away from Paris only during the last one. I saw and heard about calamities occurring in the USA, France and pretty much all over Europe this summer. My awareness of these tribulations made me choose this song. While my office was closed, I also had to deal with some hardships of my own.

Instead of information about how many people spent time in seashore resorts and how warm the sea was, this year we heard about wildfires all over France, and in many parts of Europe, as well as in areas generally not affected in the USA and Canada. We also heard about deaths from flooding and storms, as well as serious droughts. And this is just the news about the climate! The rest of the news, regardless of the topics, has been pretty gloomy, and one needs to scrutinize the media to find good news that inspires cautious optimism.

In my November 2021 issue, titled “Cloudy,” I described my longtime interest in the modern history of Taiwan. As often happens with old civilizations, to understand what is happening today one needs to go back several centuries, and I have researched Taiwanese history from the 17th century up to the present. With some Far East nations, exploring history for several thousand years is necessary to decipher current situations, and I almost never see such an in-depth perspective in either the French or American media reporting about the current situation in Taiwan. Suddenly everyone has discovered the conflict that exists in the China Sea, yet the origins of the impasse began in 1949 when General Chiang Kai-Shek and his armies and followers found refuge on the island known as Formosa. Tensions were high in August 2022, with the media talking about war being imminent. But I doubt armed conflict will break out any time soon. The hope that journalists covering this situation will go back to 1996, the year of the first-ever direct and de facto democratic presidential election in Taiwan, is perhaps not very realistic in today’s environment, but should diligent journalists cover those events, people today would be better informed and take sensationalist journalism with a grain of salt. Nevertheless, I believe that Nancy Pelosi is well acquainted with the history of Taiwan in the past 26 years, and probably even longer, as she was militant about the Tiananmen Square protests held in Beijing, which occurred in 1989.

The closing on the property on August 11th almost did not occur, as few of the parties concerned were in town except our family. Based on the situation as of August 31st, it would be quite optimistic to envision the first guest moving in on November 1st. The renovation should be completed in September but the delivery of the furniture is going to take about two months and, as my regular readers know, whatever is done in August does not count, as the factories are closed. I will use my Facebook account and the October issue to keep people informed about the exact date when everything will be ready.

I remind my readers of the kind of project I have in mind. The studio should ideally serve as temporary but comfortable lodging for someone who has either secured a long-stay visa or is submitting a request for one. It could also be for someone who wants to “test drive” living in France while on a 90-day Schengen regulation before taking the plunge – or not – to buy or rent somewhere on a more long-term basis. After 25 years of offering “A Survival Kit for Paris,” I will soon be able to propose “A Survival Home in Paris” to those who need it, as an extension of my services.

These are the guidelines to accommodate this project:

Rentals will be for a minimum of two months, maximum of six months. This is meant to be the first step toward settling in Paris, or for people who have a serious interest regarding France.

The monthly rent is 1,200€, all included (internet access, utilities and so on), with payment for the duration of the rental period due when the reservation is made.

The security deposit of the same amount, 1,200€, is added to the rent payment.

This is a no-smoking, no-pet place.

My website should soon have a section dedicated to the apartment so that reservations and payment can be done online.

Given the size of the studio – 329 square feet (30 square meters) – and the way it is set up, it is ideal for a single person. It might be considered a tad too small for a couple by American standards: there is just one room, which includes the kitchen, and only the bathroom is separate.

The two walk-throughs cost 150€ each and the initial one includes as such a one-hour session with my assistant, Sarah, for advice and guidance to help with the stay aside from showing the studio, its appliances, and other things.

While this rental business is totally separate from my consulting business, I expect many of the guests will have been my clients earlier, so the two lines of service can coexist.

I discovered two breakthroughs have come from the EU administration.

What I believe to be the more important of the two concerns the planned European Travel Information and Authorization System (ETIAS).

Currently citizens of 63 countries that are not in the European Union (EU) can enter the EU’s Schengen area without a visa. The USA is one of these countries.

ETIAS will be a completely electronic system that allows and keeps track of visitors from these countries. It resembles the Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA), which serves a similar purpose in the USA.

The legal process to create ETIAS started in 2016. The system is expected to be fully operational in May 2023, but not mandatory until the following November. Currently there is still some uncertainty regarding the timing of its implementation. 

ETIAS will make a detailed security check of each applicant to determine whether they are allowed to enter a Schengen country. This procedure applies to those who do not need a visa for travel of up to 90 days in the EU. ETIAS will gather, keep track of and update information to make sure they are not a security threat. It will also monitor precisely who is overstaying the 90-day limit inside the Schengen area.

People who are applying for or renewing an immigration status do not need to request ETIAS.

Staying after a visa or other permission has expired
I am often asked about this second issue. My answer has always been that at the end of the immigration right documented by a visa, carte de séjour or other document, the illegal stay starts. At the same time, especially in France, there is a certain tolerance for stays beyond that date. The European Commission has issued a statement that recognized this right to overstay the expiration date of an immigration status at the EU level, which I have been calling “tolerance”.

Here is the statement given by Dimitris Avramopoulos, then EU Commissioner for Migration, Home Affairs and Citizenship. on behalf of the Commission on March 13th, 2015, to an EU Parliament question:

“The Commission confirms its reply of 16 December 2014 on the same issue (E-007775/2014). Consecutive stays beyond 90 days in a Member State (such as a continuous stay without interruption right after the expiry of a long‐term residence permit) are not regulated by the Schengen acquis.

“According to Article 5(1a) of the Schengen Borders Code, the periods of stay authorized under a residence permit or a long-stay visa shall not be taken into account in the calculation of the duration of short-stay on the territory of the Schengen Member States (when assessing the compliance with the 90 days in any 180-day rule provided by the EU/Schengen acquis). This provision thus allows visa-free third-country nationals (such as US citizens) legally to remain in the Schengen area and visit the other Schengen Member States than the one that issued the residence permit; they can start ‘consuming’ their 90 days visa-free ‘tourist’-stay without leaving and re-entering the Schengen area.

“However, this provision does not allow for a continuous, uninterrupted stay in the Member State that issued the residence permit. As already stated, that would require a successful application for the prolongation/extension of stay from the Member State that issued the permit, which is obviously to be arranged before the expiry of the permit. Finally, it is to be noted that the EU/Schengen acquis does not prevent the Member States from prolonging the stay (extending the validity of the permit) for less than 90 days. The overall duration of stay matters, when, as is the case in the example discussed here, this is more than 90 days, national law applies.”

The parliamentary question, reference E-007775/2014, to which the first paragraph refers, was as follows:

“In the Commission’s view, is it possible for a third‐country national residing in an EU Member State based on a long‐term residence permit to then, once that permit has expired, remain without interruption in that same Member State based on the rules on staying in the Schengen Area — i.e., 90 days out of 180 days? If not, would it be necessary for that foreign national to leave the Member State of residence as soon as possible and then re‐enter since the relevant provisions connect the right to remain on the territory with the ‘arrival’ in that territory?

“This question mainly concerns third‐country nationals (i.e., non-European) for whom compulsory EU visa programs are in place.”

As of June 13th, 2022, people who apply for a bank account and do not receive a reply within 15 days of their application can turn immediately to the Banque de France, which will designate a bank close to the applicant’s home. This procedure is open to any person residing in France or other EU country, any French person residing abroad and certain applicants who are not allowed to use a bank.

A decree published on March 13th, 2022, in the Journal Officiel simplified the procedure for people who do not have a deposit account and cannot obtain one from the institutions they have applied to. The objective is to modify the deadlines in the procedures concerning the right to an account and improve follow-up.

A person without an account who has not received a response from the bank contacted within 15 days may refer the matter to the Banque de France by providing proof of their application in the form of an acknowledgment of receipt of the registered letter sent to the banking establishment or a receipt for hand delivery of the request.

The implicit refusal system that came into force on June 13th, 2022 replaced the certificate of refusal to open an account that the bank concerned had to produce. It was sometimes difficult or even impossible to obtain this certificate. Now one only has to refer the matter to the Banque de France to assert one’s right to an account.

Within one working day of the referral, the Banque de France designates a bank near the applicant’s home or other place of their choice. Within three days of this designation, the bank chosen must provide the customer with the documents required to open an account.

The designated institution is not obliged to open an account, but it must inform the Banque de France of the reason for any refusal. It must also inform the Banque de France if it subsequently terminates the account management agreement opened under this process.

The designated bank must provide the following basic services:

  • – opening, maintaining and closing the account,
  • – issuing bank identity statements on request called RIB, which has the IBAN of the account,
  • – effecting direct debit of bank transfers,
  • – sending a monthly statement of transactions on the account,
  • – carrying out cash operations,
  • – providing checkbooks and bank transfers,
  • – carrying out cash deposits and withdrawals at the counter or ATMs,
  • – making payments by direct debit, interbank payment orders or bank transfers,
  • – providing a means of remote consultation of the account balance,
  • – furnishing a bank card and authorizing its use,
  • – providing two bank check forms per month or an equivalent means of payment offering the same service..

Established by article 58 of the law of January 24th, 1984, on the activity and control of credit institutions, the right to a bank account is open to any individual or legal entity residing in France, to any individual requesting an account for non-business purposes and residing in another EU country and to any French person residing abroad. Applicants who are banned from banking, registered in the file of personal credit incidents or the central checks file, or in an overdraft situation may also exercise this right.

1st meeting/1st work: 350 euros for 2 hours 
Extra per hour: 150 euros 
Handling mail in my office: 50 euros per month 
Handling mail at my home: 60 euros per month 
Surcharge for out-of-office meetings: 80 euros, assuming less than 30 minutes’ transportation 
Surcharge for meetings and phone calls at the client’s request after 7PM weekdays, all weekend, on national French holidays and during vacations: 30%.



After completing my two-year master’s at the University of Rennes next month, the university has helped us obtain a two-year extension to our passport-talent visas from the prefecture.
Now that my immigration situation is under control, my wife and I would finally like to move our household possessions to France – they have been in storage in the United States since I started living in France.
We have started working with an international moving company who will handle processing the container through French customs, but they need us to provide an Attestation de non-cession and to get a Certificate of Change of Residence from the French Consulate, if I understand correctly.
We need to explain to the consulate/customs authorities that, even though we have been physically in France longer than 12 months already, it has not been our résidence normale as defined by Les franchises douanières et fiscales de droit commun à l’importation, which states that La fréquentation d’une université ou d’une école n’implique pas le transfert de la résidence normale.
This said, we understand that the French consulate via the process of requesting a Certificate of Change of Residence should deny us such documents, based on the fact that I am holding a passeport talent visa. I also studied the document issued by French customs called Les franchises douanières et fiscales de droit commun à l’importation.
We have avis d’impots and have paid the taxes d’habitation for each of the three years during which I had passeport talent immigration status. Based on my research, these French fiscal documents would be refused by the French consulate as part of processing my Certificate of Change of Residence.Please let us know if you can provide that type of assistance, or if you need more information.


You have misunderstood the issue. There is an exceptional procedure during the first year, documented by the Certificate of Change of Residence. This document is needed in the first year because the immigrant cannot prove his French fiscal residence. It is also legally assumed that this is your stuff and therefore French customs clear it automatically. Then there is the normal procedure, where the immigrant is a French fiscal resident and moves his belongings, clearing French customs with his French tax documents. In that case, the legal assumption that this is a commercial transaction applies until proved otherwise. This is done by showing the bills related to moving your stuff in storage, and the ones for keeping it there. Indeed, doing this is how you prove that your belongings are being sent from your previous primary residence in the USA and are going to your new French primary residence.
Most people move their household goods here quickly, as they need them in France right away. So for moving companies, the norm in their industry is to clear the things using the Certificate of Change of Residence. But you qualify for the normal procedure, which is to move the belongings from your American primary residence, now in storage, to the French primary residence defined by your French fiscal documents. The moving company should have no problem using them. If this is not the case, quote the law of which you have mentioned some excerpts in your question. Here is what I propose you do to get ready:
1 – Remind them that the Certificate of Change of Residence would have been asked for during the first year of your French immigration residence.
2 – Tell them French customs law states there is a normal way to import your things. Then give them the following quote from the document you have.
“Individuals who have been established for at least twelve consecutive months in a third country and who transfer their normal residence to French territory may import their personal property free of duties and taxes, subject to the exclusions provided for in point 2.2.
“The concepts of personal property, third country, and normal residence are defined in the introduction to this instruction.
“2. Scope of application
2.1 Conditions relating to the property

The personal property must have borne the customs and/or tax charges for which it is normally liable, either in the country of origin or in the country from which it comes. Invoices may be requested by the customs office. The beneficiary must provide proof either of their acquisition including all taxes in the country of origin or of the payment of import duties and taxes in the country of origin.
“The goods imported into France must be intended for the same use as before they were imported and must not, by their nature or quantity, reflect any commercial concerns.
“2.2 Conditions relating to the beneficiaries of the exemption
➢ Possession

The waiver applies to personal property in the possession of the beneficiary and used by him for at least six months before the date on which he ceased to have his normal residence in the third country of origin.
“The benefit of the exemption is not limited to property that was part of the assets of the person concerned for at least six months before the change of residence but also concerns other property over which the person exercised, during that same period, effective and real control, irrespective of whether or not that person was the owner.
“Example: a vehicle made available exclusively to an individual by his employer with a right of first refusal on the vehicle.
“The six-month prior possession of vehicles and high-value goods must be justified (production of the purchase invoice or registration certificate for vehicles or lease contract with purchase option or any other equivalent document).
“In addition, goods admitted duty-free may not be lent, pledged, hired out, or transferred for valuable consideration or free of charge before the expiry of a period of twelve months calculated from the date of acceptance of the declaration of release for free circulation following the general provisions.”
Based on your declaration, you qualify for provision 2.2, “Conditions relating to the beneficiaries of the exemption”
3 – Your French fiscal residence is the address where the movers will deliver your possessions. You have a long-standing French fiscal residence, and it will play a major role in this procedure.
You prove your French primary residence by showing taxe d’habitation bills in your name and ideally with the last French income tax bill, the avis d’imposition sur les revenus.


The answer is simple: yes, you will be able to change employers, without running any risk of losing your immigration status, one year into the coming four-year carte de séjour salarié.

I would like to explain why. This explanation may go beyond the core of your concern, but I want to make sure you see the correlation between being an employee in France and the various immigration statuses linked to French employment.

The salarié category includes travailleur temporaire when it is a fixed contract (CDD, contrat à durée déterminée) lasting at least six months, and salarié when it is an open-ended contract (CDI, contrat à durée indéterminée). It is also possible to get one of the ten sub-categories of the passeport talent category. Of the two most relevant ones, the first is jeunes diplômés qualifiés salariés ou salariés d’une jeune entreprise innovante, i.e. qualified graduates who are employees, or employees of a start-up company. The requirements are having a gross annual salary of €40,295 as of August 1st, 2022, and an open-ended or fixed-term employment contract of at least three months with a French employer, and holding a master’s degree or equivalent obtained in France.

The other obvious sub-category is travailleurs hautement qualifiés (carte bleue européenne), i.e. highly qualified employees (European blue card). The requirements are an open-ended or fixed-term employment contract of at least one year with a French employer, a French or foreign diploma certifying at least three years of higher education or documents proving five years of professional experience in the field at a comparable level, and a gross annual salary of €53,836.50 as of August 1st, 2022.

Depending on the details of the job you will be getting, you can hold one of those three types of status. You can keep the one you are about to get, which is salarié, or get one of the two I just mentioned.

Now I would like to review the specific right to work as an employee. There are two different situations. Either your future job fits the carte de séjour salarié or you will get one of the passeport talent sub-categories.

If it is carte de séjour salarié, your right to work as an employee is totally secured once you have had it for two years or more. The right linked to travailleur temporaire is different from salarié. Since you already have one-year seniority with salarié, you need to wait one year with the new card before you fully secure this right, according to the regulation linked to this status.

NB: if you change employers during the first year of validity of the card, the law states that a request to renew the carte de séjour will be automatically refused. If you change employers during the second year of validity, the law states that you need to submit a new file asking for the right to work, as the French administration can veto this procedure depending on the unemployment rate in your field.

However, if you change employers during the third year, the employee right is fully secured and you do not risk anything. But although the right is secured, your new employer still needs to submit a request related to the right to work as an employee, using the website dedicated to working in France:

If your new job gets you a passeport talent carte de séjour, on the other hand, you will submit a request to the prefecture to obtain that card, and the right to work as an employee will be fully secured this way.


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