passeport talent

How to Apply for the Passeport Talent Visa

Americans have had the Profession Libérale and Long-term Stay Visitor statuses closed for application from the US for some time now due to Covid-19.  Other countries do have these options available and Americans who have had legal residence in other countries have successfully applied for and received these statuses from the embassies/consulates in those countries and have subsequently entered France.  One status has remained open to Americans applying from the US: Passeport Talent, a status I had helped clients within a limited capacity in previous years.  But a colleague of mine has watched many friends get it over the years and is now helping those who are stateside and do not want to wait for PL or Visitor to re-open (and who don’t fancy the student route) to get this visa.  I had her write this brief look at three of the 11 classifications available within Passeport Talent for this article.  I’ve added some editorial notes in italics but if you’d like help with this visa classification you can contact Molli at the link at the bottom of the article. – SH

For non-Europeans looking to come to France to live, your best bet has long been the student visa. Even for those who thought their student days were long behind them, traveling to France for some continued education is by far the easiest way. And, continued education doesn’t mean that you need to sign up to do another undergrad or Master’s degree. You can obtain a student visa if you take French classes or attend a cooking school, among other options.

But then 2020 arrived and our lives changed. Traveling wasn’t as easy as before (if it was even allowed) and moving to a foreign country became a distant memory of something that you may have considered. Even college students had to put their study abroad semesters on hold, and if you did manage to get a student visa for yourself, your spouse or children weren’t necessarily able to apply for their own visas through yours. 

But there’s always another way if you look hard enough. If you’re feeling frustrated and aren’t sure what to do, I’m glad you found this blog. Here’s how to apply for a different type of visa for France, the Passeport Talent. 

What is it?

Passeport Talent is a fancy French way of saying that if you’ve got talent, come and share your skills in France! It is a multi-year residence permit that was created to bring talented foreigners to France in order to develop the county’s “attractiveness.” As if France wasn’t attractive enough, right? Well, if you’ve got a special skill that you want to bring over to the Français, you can, thanks to the passeport talent

Who can apply?

You can apply if you’re planning on working and living in France for more than three months. You’ll remember that people from many non-European countries are allowed to visit and live in Europe without a visa for 90 days. The passeport talent ensures that you’re allowed to stay for much, much longer. This long-term visa (otherwise known as a residence permit) is issued for up to 4 years and is renewable.

In order to apply, you must be from a non-European country. 

How to do it

If you’re still in your home country, you’re required to apply at the nearest French consulate. If you’re already in France and are interested in changing your visa status, you’ll need to go to the closest prefecture. To start, you’ll have to provide these documents:

  • Your passport
  • Your birth certificate (translated into French by an officially licensed translator)
  • Your wedding certificate, if you are married (translated)
  • Your children’s birth certificates, if you have any (translated)
  • Proof of address
  • Three ID photos
  • Application (different according to your activity)
  • Official documents related to your activity.

It will cost you 269 € to get the final card.

So, who can receive the passeport talent? There are 11 different scenarios in which you could potentially get one, but for the sake of this article, I will briefly examine three of them. I encourage you to visit the official French website for this type of visa if you don’t see an option below that works for you. 

You want to create a business in France, or are taking control of one

(This is ideal if you have some money set aside for yourself and is essentially a more financially muscular Prof Lib – SH)

  • You’ll apply for “passeport talent — création d’entreprise.
  • You must prove that you have a serious plan to open a business in France. 
  • You’re required to invest at least 30,000€ in your project, have a degree that is equivalent to a Master’s degree (or are able to prove that you have five years of professional experience in your field)
  • You are also able to apply for the passeport talent — création d’entreprise if you are slated to take control of a French business.
  • You’ll need to show proof of the plans for your new business as well as proof of your investment, your diploma, that you’ll be earning at least the French minimum wage (roughly 1,500€ gross per month), and you must fill out this application.

You are an artist, a writer, or a performer

(This is perfect if you were already planning to come as a writer on Prof Lib – SH)

  • You’ll apply for “passeport talent — profession artistique et culturelle.
  • If you’re a singer, performer, author, or simply an artist, you must prove that you earn at least 1,064.85€ gross per month.
  • You’ll need to provide documents that prove that you are a professional artist, and if you are employed by a French company, you’ll need proof of that too. That being said, you can apply for this visa even if you are self-employed. You must fill out this application as well.

You are making a direct economic investment in France

(If you had dreams of opening a B&B or some other larger traditional business, this is a good route for you.  Simply buying a property is insufficient in and of itself.  The investment must create/save jobs. – SH)

  • You’ll apply for “passeport talent — investissement économique — toutes activités commerciales.
  • You must prove that you are investing at least 300,000€ in a French company that you own or through a company in which you hold at least a 30% share of the capital.
  • You must also prove that you will create or save jobs and you must have proof of your plans for your investment, and you must also be earning at least the French minimum wage (roughly 1,500€ gross per month). 

These are just three of the possible situations which would allow you to apply for the passport talent. Like all things in the French administration, the application process is long and very involved. We offer private consultation services which range from help with visas and adjusting to life abroad to Paris travel itineraries. Fill out the contact form to learn more.

Photo courtesy of Nick Youngson CC BY-SA 3.0 Alpha Stock Images

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22 thoughts on “How to Apply for the Passeport Talent Visa

  1. Can you apply for the passeport talent while in France on the normal 90 day tourist visa? My husband has a job that will sponsor him for this visa already.

    • Hi Kelsey,

      If your husband has been approved for his visa, you can apply to join him in France as his spouse. You can read more about that process here.

      If I were you I would apply for it before you come to France to avoid any unnecessary problems.

  2. Hi Molli –
    I am writing a new project here, and want to apply for the “passeport talent – profession artistique et culturelle.” I’ve read though your very helpful information, and downloaded the Eléments du ou des contrats de travail document. I’m just a bit lost when trying to find the profession artistique et culturelle application itself. Is it the link below?
    https://france-visas.gouv.fr/en/web/france-visas/ma-demande-en-ligne
    Thanks so much in advance for any info.

    • Hi Glen, thanks so much for reading! Yes, use the link you’ve provided to start the visa application process. You’ll have to create an account with France-Visas and follow the steps they provide. Once you’ve made your account you’ll be able to access the application. You can do this in English to avoid any confusion! I hope this helps.

  3. Hi! I’ll already be in France at the time as American on the 90 day visa! Will it be ok to apply at prefecture this way?

    • Rose if you mean the 90-day “visa waiver” that is not a visa in any kind of sense. You will have no status in France to apply, therefore you cannot apply here. You will need to apply from your country of residence.

  4. Hi!
    Thank you for the very helpful article! I have a couple of questions.
    If I want to apply for a visa “passeport talent – profession artistique et culturelle” and my husband will accompany me, 1,064.85€ gross per month and is it per person? So it should be doubled for two people or this amount is per family?
    And can I apply for this type of visa if I am a freelance artist?
    Thank you.

    • Hi Lena! Thanks for reading. The only person with a salary requirement here would be the one applying for a visa. If your visa is approved your husband will be able to apply for a VPF (vie privée familiale – a visa for spouses of long-stay visa holders) visa to join you. There are no salary requirements for this type of visa!

      Yes, you can apply for the passeport talent as a freelance artist, if you meet all of the requirements. I offer consultations on just this type of thing. Feel free to get in touch if you’re interested!

  5. If I obtain a 90 day short stay visa while in my home country (USA), is it possible to apply for a long stay visa while in France?

  6. Pingback: How to Renew a Four Year Profession Liberale Visa | The American in Paris

  7. Hello,

    Thank you so much for the very helpful article.
    I’m in France with a long stay visa, and hoping to switch it to Passport Talent as an artist. I considered about PL visa too, but if am allowed to apply for this at the prefecture while I’m in France (if I understood this article right ), it’d suit my situation. Now I’m wondering when is it possible to apply for it? Is it ok to do so more than 2 months before the current visitor visa expires?

    This is my first year I’m in France.

    • Nicole

      You can’t switch to one of these visas right away from visitor. You need to renew once as a visitor, and then when your next renewal comes up you can apply for a change of status to either PL or Talent.

      Remember you can always apply from a country in which you have residence, and since you live in France now and hold a renewable titre, there’s no question of having to go back to a home country to renew or change status.

  8. Hi,

    I have one doubt regarding the “passeport talent – creation d’entreprise” title. Here (and in other places) I read that it is basically similar to the “profession liberale” with the added requirement of the 30,000€, however I see another significant difference. While for profession liberale I read -in the government’s websites, that it allows “vous installer comme professionnel libéral en France”, for passport talent I read that the company needs to be of type “commerciale, artisanale ou industrielle”. That would seem to exclude “profession liberale”-type of companies such as a software engineering consultancy. Is this indeed the case or am I misinterpreting something?

    Thanks!

    • Hi Ernesto, thanks for reading! I specialize in the artist option for the passeport talent because as you can see the creation d’entreprise status is quite complicated! I don’t have an answer for you, but you can email me at mollisebrier@gmail.com and I can potentially connect you with an immigration lawyer who may be able to help.

  9. Thank you very much for this! All very informative, and helped to answer some of our burning questions about the possibilities of staying and establishing residency.

  10. Hi Molli,
    I’m a recording artist that is signed to a U.S. record label/entertainment company. I will be composing and recording music in France for a project that will take more than a year to complete, in addition I want to move to France permanently. The record label/entertainment company will be paying me to compose and record the music as well as my living expenses. That said, music artists that are signed and paid advances and royalties or are comissioned to make music are considered self-employed independent contractors. So as a self employeed music artist who wants to get the long stay Talent Passport designated for self employeed artists, can I get the visa showing that I’m being paid by a u.s. company to do this music project in France, or do I need to show that I’m being paid by a French company/entity/individual? The music project would be created in France and the album would be released in France (with albums, singles / streaming, vinyl sales occurring in France) and there would be French lyrics, in addition to a global release in English. This project will truly be a French project that highlights French heritage and culture… so this would benefit France. But again, this project would be paid for by a U.S. based entertainment company, so any proof of income paid to me from this project would come from that source. Do you think I can qualify for the self-employed artist Talent Visa based on the info I’m providing? Your insight is much appreciated

    • Hi Nat, thanks for reading! Based on everything you’ve outlined here you have a good chance of being approved for the visa in my opinion as it sounds like your project is very much tied to France and French culture. If you’re paid an advance and it covers the French minimum wage for the entire time you plan to work in France then you could use that as proof that you’re able to support yourself. I hope this helps!

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