Useful tips & information

6 tips for a smooth repatriation

Your France experience is coming to an end? Whether you are moving back to your home country or expatriating to another country, you have administrative procedures to go through… the same way you did when you first arrived. Here are 6 tips to help smooth repatriation.

Check out my article 10 tips to prepare a stress-free expatriation to France; it will help you get ready for your next destination. The two articles are complementary as I am now detailing other elements specific to your repatriation.

Sort out your local situation

Tip 1: Give notice to your landlord

Check your rental contract if you have one month or 3 months notice. Remember, if you live in a big city there is a chance your notice will be one month, even though it is mentioned 3 months in your rental contract. Find out if this notice reduction applies to you here.

You should give notice by registered mail with recorded delivery.

Tip 2: Gather the necessary documents

Administrative documents
Photo by Sharon McCutcheon

Gather the necessary administrative documents up before your departure. Some will be difficult to get once you are gone, such as:

  • Employment certificates, payslips, references, contracts
  • Tax notices
  • School reports
  • Vaccines certificates, copy of medical records from your French doctors
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If you are moving to another European country (or may relocate to one in the future), the following forms will be useful to settle in another European country.

If you are now travelling to a none-European country but there is a possibility you may move to a European country, later on, I strongly recommend you to request the following documents from the French administration, just in case. It may prevent you from future administrative hassles…

European Health insurance card
  • S1 form: It is a Certificate of entitlement to healthcare if you don’t live in the country where you are insured. It will give the information to the other European healthcare system of your rights in France and will facilitate your registration. You can request it from the CPAM.
  • E104 and U1 forms (formerly called E301): Proof of the payment of social security contributions, which you can obtain from the employment department of the country that you leave.
  • U2 form (formerly called E303): If you received unemployment benefits in France, you can transfer these benefits to another European country to look for work there.

The U1 and U2 forms can be requested from Pôle Emploi International services:

Pôle Emploi Services
Service Mobilité internationale
TSA 10107
92891 Nanterre Cedex 9
Courriel: [email protected]

Tip 3: Update your civil status certificates (if applicable)

If you got married, had a child, or had any other changes in your civil status while you were in France, you should have it transcript by your consulate services in France. This will facilitate any future administrative procedures in your next country of residence.

Tip 4: Update your residence status with your consulate

If you were registered with your consulate in France, let them know you are leaving the country. If you are moving to a none-European country with a household good shipment, you will be requested a change of residence certificate from the Customs Services. Your consulate will be able to provide you with this document.

Tip 5: Inform the French administrations

The French tax office

Once you have found your new permanent accommodation, you should inform the French tax office and provide the date you left the country and your new address of residence.

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Remember that you will need to do the French tax return the following month of April regarding your N-1 income. It is therefore recommended to keep your French bank account open until the following month of October when you will receive your French tax notice.

The French healthcare (CPAM)

Within one month following your departure, you should send the S1105 form to CPAM informing them of your new address. This doesn’t apply to you if you are going abroad under the assignee status and therefore you are keeping your rights to the French social security.

Terminate your contracts

You need to terminate all the contracts you have in France such as electricity, gas, telephone, Internet, water, local insurance etc.

Inform the other administrations (if applicable)

You may have been entitled to subsidies with CAF (family benefits) or Pôle Emploi (employment centre), let them know of your departure.

Get ready for your next destination!

This is pretty much the same as getting ready for coming to France. Check out my article 10 tips to prepare a stress-free expatriation to France; it will help you get ready for your next destination.

smooth repatriation
Photo by Fahrul Azmi

Tip 6: Anticipate your move

The first procedures you want to sort out are your visa request; your children school search and getting temporary accommodation in your next destination if needed.


In most countries, school enrolment should be done several months in advance, especially in a private school with a selection system. Get as much information as possible in advance to have options for your child.


If you are not travelling back to your home country, you may need to apply for a visa for your next destination. Contact the consulate of your future country of destination in France for further information.

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The visa request should always be done from your country of residence (where you have a residence permit). Therefore, you do not need to travel to your home country to request a visa.


If you do not have housing options where you are going, I recommend booking temporary housing for 3 weeks minimum. This is the average time to find a more permanent property.

You are now starting to be pretty ready to start your new adventure! 

Get your suitcase ready following my 10 tips to pack your luggage for your expatriation and organise your French leaving party! 

hope you have found this article useful, would you add any other topics to this listLet me know in the comments section

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