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BREAKING NEWS

France will launch website that allows Britons to submit residence permit applications

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France will launch website that allows Britons to submit residence permit applications
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Reuters
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The French government is set to launch a website that will allow Britons in France to apply for a residence permit online, said the prime minister's office, in a push to standardise the procedure across the country.

The website will start running in October.

French Prime Minister Edouard Philippe announced the plans on Monday at a special meeting of French ministers on Brexit preparations.

The new website launched by the Ministry of the Interior will be used as an "online registration platform for resident permits (carte de sejour) applications for British nationals living in France", said a statement by Philippe's office.

The new website will only process applications of people who are already residing in France at the time of Brexit.

Philippe also pointed out in the meeting that a website for Brexit-related questions already exists.

Euronews has reached out to the interior ministry for more information but has been told further communication on the website will be made available shortly.

Until now, applications have been dealt with by local prefectures so the online platform is meant to standardise the process across the country.

However, Kalba Meadows from citizens' rights group British in Europe's France team was cautious about whether the system would be able to process all the applications on time and without any glitches.

She told Euronews: "We were given to understand last year that there would be a centralised application platform, and this was confirmed in the table produced by the European Commission in June, so while it's not 'new news' for us it's good that a timeline will now be put into place so that the process can begin as soon as possible.

"It's going to be a mammoth task processing applications from up to 200k Brits in France.

"As ever, the devil is in the detail though - and we understand that although applications will be made on a central online platform they will still be processed by individual préfectures, many of which will struggle to meet the demand without extra resources.

"No announcement has been made to date about the provision of additional resources so we're following with interest and look forward to discussing the details of the scheme as soon as possible so it can be made as user-friendly as possible."

The French government has already been pushing Britons living in France to apply for a residency permit.

The existing Brexit website says that in the case of a no-deal Brexit there will be a one-year grace period to obtain a permit but that applications must be filed within six months of Brexit day.

If the UK leaves the EU with a deal, Britons will have until July 31, 2021, to submit their applications for a residence permit.

The statement from the French prime minister also said that an extra 600 customs staff have been appointed to process arrivals in France from the UK and an extra 200 veterinary experts have been called to the border.

For more information on the conditions to fulfil to apply for a residence permit and more frequently asked questions, check out the French government's Brexit website.