Bourg-en-Bresse - complications ensued after Carte de Sejour application

My wife and I requested titres de séjour “Citoyen UE/EEE/Suisse - séjour permanent” in April 2017 from the Prefecture of the department of l’Ain in Bourg-en Bresse. We are long-term expatriates having lived first in Switzerland for 17 years and then in France from 1987.

The subsequent sequence of events was long and complicated. Although our applications were identical, mine was returned rejected for lack of correct information and justifications, and my wife’s was apparently lost. Later we heard from the “service des étrangers” at the sous-préfecture in Gex, our home town, with whom we had had contact on the subject, that it had been sent in error to them and that they had returned it to Bourg-en-Bresse.

After many attempts to contact the prefecture by phone, email and letter, to no avail, we finally resubmitted our applications, identical to the first attempt, but informed the sous-préfecture of our action.

Finally in late 2017 we were invited to attend the prefecture in Bourg-en-Bresse. This would have meant a 2 hour journey each way and in consideration of my wife’s mobility problems we requested that we should be received instead at the sous-préfecture in Gex. This was ignored, but finally thanks to the good offices of one very helpful person at the sous-préfecture we were able to collect the temporary documents in Gex during a less than 10 minute interview, and then the final documents a few weeks later.

In summary we were initially met with incompetence, disinterest and obfuscation and it was only due to the kind good offices of this one person in Gex that we finally obtained our “Titres de Séjour”.

If this procedure has to be repeated for whatever documents the French authorities will require us to hold after Brexit, we are in trepidation of the stress and upheaval this could engender once again.

In our opinion, citizens’ rights have not been adequately considered in this whole sorry Brexit process which MUST BE STOPPED! This is not to mention that we were not able to vote in the referendum and it looks as though we will be entirely disenfranchised after Brexit.

CP