`Here, we will explain the purpose of the Intra-Company Transfer (ICT) (Mobilité Intragroupe) immigration route for France, the eligibility rules, and how to apply. For expert assistance with your immigration matter, contact Reiss Edwards, immigration lawyers, and solicitors in London.
With the world’s fifth-largest economy (worth over 2.5 Trillion Euros), France is home to many of the world’s largest multinationals, including Airbus, L’Oreal, the PSA Group, Danone, BNP Paribas, Ubisoft, Michelin, and Capgemini. Global organisations with interests in France rely heavily on the ability to send seconded employees from other countries to work for a period of time in a French company in the same group. By doing so, companies can ensure that staff with the necessary skills, experience, and seniority can be seconded where they are needed. Here, we will explain the purpose of the Intra-Company Transfer (ICT) (Mobilité Intragroupe) immigration route for France, the eligibility rules, and how to apply.
The French ‘Intra-Company Transfer’ (ICT) (Mobilité Intragroupe) immigration route is for employees of foreign companies who have been with their employer for six or more months. Employees are typically seconded for a limited duration to carry out a specific task or series of tasks, such as overseeing the delivery of a new IT system, introducing a new product to the French market, or purchasing new premises.
ICT seconded employees must meet the following criteria:
If you are eligible under the ICT immigration route and your stay will be for 12 months or more, it is likely you will be granted a long-stay visa (VLS) with the words “ICT Seconded Employee”. If your stay will be for less than 12 months or you will be attending training in France, you will receive a long-stay visa (VLS) with the words “ICT Trainee”.
The first stage in applying under the ICT route is for the employer and a representative of the French company (where you will be working) to apply for an ICT declaration form 15619 * 01. They will need to detail the terms and conditions of your secondment in France, the organisation and its structure, your employment contract, job role and qualifications, hours and pay, and any contact information. The company will also need to provide a completed ‘internship agreement’; this must be drawn up by the overseas entity and the French hosting company. Once these documents have been approved, you can then apply for your visa to come to France.
The second stage of the ICT process is to apply for an entry visa. Those following the ICT route in France who wish to stay for less than 12 months will receive a ‘VL-TS’, which will allow them to enter France for the stated purpose (i.e. ICT secondment). A VL-TS has the added benefit of functioning as a visa and permit in a single document. Holding a VL-TS means you will not need to apply for a separate residence permit in France. If you plan to stay for more than 12 months, you will receive a standard long-term visa (VLS).
For those outside of France, applicants can apply online or by visiting their nearest French consulate. It is recommended that applications be submitted three months before the intended date of arrival in the country.
When applying for your long-term visa, you will need to include copies of the ICT declaration form and the internship agreement.
Several documents must be submitted to support a VLS or VLS-TS application, including:
The following fees are payable for a long-stay visa
On arrival in France, the VL-TS holder will need to validate their VL-TS with the French Office for Immigration and Integration (OFII). The rules state, “Upon arrival after validation of their visa, and at the latest within three months of his entry into the territory, the visa holder must register with OFII. The long-stay visa is only valid as a residence permit if it has been validated by OFII. This process, as well as the payment of the tax on the residence permit and the stamp duty, are made online at; https://administration-etrange...
VLS holders are obliged to apply for a residence permit within two months of arrival in France. Applicants need to present in person in their local prefecture and provide the originals of their supporting documents. At this stage, a final fee may be payable.
In many cases, the project or assignment linked to the secondment may take longer than anticipated, in which case a residence permit extension will be needed. As long as you are still employed by your overseas employer, and they still have interests in France (i.e. a company in the same group), it should be possible to renew your residence permit in France.
If you are eligible to extend your residence, an application must be submitted within two months of the expiry of your current VLS or VLS-TS at your local immigration office in France. In order to be granted a renewal, you will need to provide proof that you still meet the requirements for an employee residence permit.
If you are unsure if you are eligible to extend your temporary worker residence permit in France, speak to an immigration lawyer who will be able to outline your available options based on your circumstances.
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