Disappointing news for British sun-seekers! A French court has dashed the hopes of around 86,000 British second-home owners, throwing out a proposed law that would have granted them automatic long-stay visas.

What was the plan?

The amendment, championed by Senator Martine Berthet, aimed to let British expats with second homes in France bypass the 90-day visa limit. This meant more time soaking up the sunshine and contributing to local economies, particularly in tourist areas struggling with empty properties after Brexit.

Why did it fall through?

The French Constitutional Court deemed the amendment “unconstitutional” and irrelevant to the immigration bill it was attached to. This means the decision is final, leaving many Brits with second homes in limbo.

What are the current options?

British citizens now face the standard post-Brexit rules: a 90-day limit within a 180-day period. Longer stays require a temporary visa (valid for up to 6 months) or permanent residency. Ignoring these regulations could lead to expulsion from France and the EU.

The impact:

This rejection is a blow to British expats and could dampen the French property market. A recent surge in inquiries about French properties following the amendment’s proposal highlights the potential economic impact.

While this is a setback, there’s still hope. Senator Berthet has vowed to explore alternative solutions, and discussions with the UK government are ongoing. At Visa-Applications.org, we’ll keep you updated on any developments affecting British expats in France. We also offer guidance and support throughout the visa application process. Even with this hurdle, France remains a popular destination for Brits. With careful planning and the right visa, your French dream can still become a reality.

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