ARRIVING AND LIVING
VISAS AND RESIDENCY PERMIT
BEFORE LEAVING – GETTING YOUR VISA
Procedures for registering in a French higher education institution vary depending on your nationality, your country of residence and your educational plans. International students from outside the European Union who wish to study for more than 3 months in France must have a valid Visa. The Visa should be applied for in their home country and before arriving in France. Once on the French soil, the student will not be able to request a visa for their stay.
Since June 1, 2009, students may apply for long-stay visas. This new VLS-TS visas, issued for stays of 91 days or more in France and offers the following characteristics:
- Passport-free movement across the Schengen area, French overseas departements (DOM) and St Pierre and Miquelon (does not include other French territories)
- Serves as a "residence permit". It authorizes its holder to reside in France and work within the limit of 60% of the annual working time.
All requests for this type of visa must include an original OFII (Office française de l’Immigration et de l’Integration - French immigration and integration office) form, with the top part completed by the applicant when the application is filed. After being approved and stamped the form will be returned to the applicant. It is available for download on the OFII site.
The CEF Procedure (Center for studies in France) is compulsory in 41 countries: this online process is required to get a student visa. Citizens of countries subject to the CEF procedure must submit their visa requests online, using their country's Campus France section. The list of concerned countries is accessible on the Campus France website .
Students from other countries must go through the "long-stay visa for studies in France" procedure at the French Embassy in their home country.
The following documents must be provided:
- Valid passport
- Letter of admission to EPF
- Proof of financial resources, around €615/month (Scholarship certificate or a financial guarantee letter including the sponsor's name to certify that individuals can meet expenses without resorting to unlawful employment or public funds)
- Long-stay visa request form.
- OFII certificate request form.
You may be asked to provide other documents (depending on the country where the request has been formulated). We strongly recommend getting information from the Campus France office in your home country or from the nearest consulate about specific requirements that may be applicable to you depending on your situation before applying.
Students can check at www.expat.org the list of Consultates and Embassies. Citizens of the European Union are exempt from visas and residence permits.
- Please note: if you are studying in an EU country but you are not a citizen of that country, you still need to request a student visa for France.
UPON ARRIVAL – RESIDENCE PERMIT
FIRST YEAR IN FRANCE:
Students with long-stay visas must complete the OFII form. The original copy should be sent to the OFII within 3 months of arriving in France. EPF's Student Life Office will collect these forms on orientation day and they will be sent all at once to the OFII. The OFII will then covoke each student to a medical exam in order to approve their visas.
You must bring:
- your passport
- proof of address (rent slip, lease, water, gas, electricity or landline telephone bill in your name, or letter from your host)
- a valid passport photo (from the front, head uncovered)
- a €60 OFII stamp
The OFII will stamp the passport to certify that these formalities have been taken care of. If these formalities are not completed, the visa will no longer be valid, and the visa holder loses all rights that come with the visa and may be deported.
EPF renews residence permits for students staying more than one year and who report to the Sous Préfecture of Antony. Please get in touch with the Student Life Office two months prior the expiration date of your visa or your first residence permit.
The following documents are required (subject to change):
- Valid passport (photocopy of pages with name, photo, validity dates, visa and date of arrival in France)
- Former residence permit or Visa of arrival
- Signed CERFA form
- 5 ID photos (recent, head uncovered, from the front, not scanned)
- Certificate of Enrollment (provided by EPF),
- Grade transcript (provided by EPF),
- Proof of financial resources (bank statements for the past 6 months),
- proof of housing (certificate from your university residence or, lease contract, rent slip, lease, water, gas, electricity or landline telephone bill in your name, or letter from your host)
Students spending two non-consecutive terms at EPF must submit a new application for their second term and request a new visa from the OFII