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Residence permit: Researchers

Scientists from European countries

If you are a scientist or a PhD student from a country of the European Union or the European Economic Area (EEA), or from Switzerland, you can reside and work in France. No procedures are required.

Scientists from third countries

In 2016, the multi-year "Passeport talent" residence permit was created to simplify migration for foreign employees and non-employees who want to contribute to France’s economic performance. This permit is issued in several cases. Researchers (and PhD candidates under certain conditions) can benefit from “chercheur” status.

Some advantages of the “Passeport talent” permit:
  1. Family members of card-holders may be issued a multi-year residence permit bearing the words "passeport talent - famille" which avoids having to go through the family reunification procedure. This card also grants the right to exercise a professional activity.
  2. It allows a salaried professional activity to be exercised without having to apply for a work permit from the Regional Directorate for Enterprises, Competition, Consumption, Labour and Employment (DIRECCTE).
  3. It is a multi-year card and therefore exempts its holder from the tedious annual renewal procedure at the Préfecture.
Depending on your situation, procedures and documents vary.

You reside in Lyon

In Lyon, Espace Ulys is responsible for verifying researcher cases and making appointments at the Préfecture.

You have a "Passeport talent" visa or residence permit

You have a long stay visa (VLS-TS) R311-3 9° L313-20 4° “PASSEPORT TALENT"

Within three months of your arrival, you must validate your visa, after which it has the same value as a residence permit.

The validation request must be sent online using the dedicated website (website in French, English and Chinese).

Note: you will be required to pay a tax of €200 to validate your VLS-TS.

Keep in mind that your hosting agreement and your “passeport talent” visa allow you:
  • To work on the mission mentioned in your hosting agreement on your arrival in France, even if your visa is not yet validated.
  • To come and go within the Schengen Area as you please for the first three months.
If you have any doubts about the type of visa you have received, send a copy by email to Espace Ulys. We can inform you of the procedure to follow.

YOU ARE COMING TO LYON WITH YOUR SPOUSE: your spouse must have received the same type of visa stating R311-3 and must also have it validated.

You have a long stay visa L313-20 4° "Passeport talent - c. sej. a sollic."


Within two months of your arrival
, you must contact Espace Ulys, we will check your file and arrange an appointment at the Préfecture du Rhône so you can submit your application for a residence permit.

At the appointment at the Préfecture, and subject to your application being complete, you will receive an Autorisation Provisoire de Séjour (APS), a temporary residence permit. You can legally reside and work in France with the APS while waiting for your residence permit. You are also allowed to travel outside France.

You will be notified by SMS when your residence permit is available for collection (approximately two months after the request). A tax of €225 is payable in revenue stamps when you collect your permit. The residence permit is valid for several years.
In order to collect your residence permit, you must make an appointment at the Prefecture using the dedicated platform. This process is only dedicated to those having written confirmation their card is ready for collection.

YOU ARE COMING TO LYON WITH YOUR SPOUSE: he/she should have received the same type of visa with the designation L313-21 and must also contact us to make an appointment at the Préfecture. You must accompany your spouse at this appointment.
Download the list of required documents by the Préfecture.

Procedure for renewing your “Passeport talent” residence permit or changing your status.

In the case of a change of status to "passeport talent-chercheur " (for example, from a "étudiant" residence permit) you must follow the same procedure as for renewal.

The renewal of your "passeport talent-chercheur" residence permit (and your spouse’s if need be) must be done at the Préfecture within two months prior to the expiration of your current residence permit or visa. You must contact Espace Ulys, we will check your file and arrange an appointment at the Préfecture du Rhône so you can submit your application for a residence permit.

At this appointment at the Préfecture, and only if your application is complete, you will be issued a receipt for your request for renewal of the "passeport talent” residence permit .

You will be notified by SMS when your residence permit is available for collection (approximately two months after the request). A tax of €225 is payable in revenue stamps at this appointment.
In order to collect your residence permit, you must make an appointment at the Prefecture using the dedicated platform. This process is only dedicated to those having written confirmation their card is ready for collection.

For all subsequent renewals, the procedure is identical and must be initiated two months prior to the expiration date of your residence permit.
Download the list of documents required for the residence permit renewal

Algerian scientists


Algerian scientists are subject to a special bilateral agreement. You must obtain your residence permit through the Préfecture.

First application for a "Scientifique-chercheur" residence permit

Within two months of your arrival, you must contact Espace Ulys, we will check your file and arrange an appointment at the Préfecture du Rhône so you can submit your application for a residence permit.

At the appointment at the Préfecture, and subject to your file being complete, you will receive a receipt for your application for a residence permit. This receipt allows you to legally reside and work in France while waiting for your residence permit.

Note: the receipt does not grant you the right to travel after the validity dates of your visa. You must wait for your residence permit to be able to travel.

You will be notified by SMS when your residence permit is ready for collection (approximately two months after applying).
In order to collect your residence permit, you must make an appointment at the Prefecture using the dedicated platform. This process is only dedicated to those having written confirmation their card is ready for collection.

Download the list of documents for the first application for a residence permit

Procedure for renewing your “Scientifique-chercheur” residence permit or for changing status

In the case of a change of status to "Scientifique-chercheur" (for example, from an "étudiant" residence permit) you must follow the same procedure as for renewal.

The renewal of your "scientifique-chercheur" residence permit (and your spouse’s if need be) must be done at the Préfecture within two months prior to the expiration of your current residence permit or visa. In this case, you must contact Espace Ulys, we will check your file and arrange an appointment at the Préfecture du Rhône so you can submit your application for a residence permit.

At the appointment at the Préfecture, and only if your application is complete, you will be issued a receipt of your request for renewal of the "scientifique” residence permit.

You will be notified by SMS when your residence permit is ready for collection (approximately 2 months after applying). A tax of €225 is payable in revenue stamps at this appointment.
In order to collect your residence permit, you must make an appointment at the Prefecture using the dedicated platform. This process is only dedicated to those having written confirmation their card is ready for collection.

For all subsequent renewals, the procedure will be identical and must be initiated within two months before the expiration date of your residence permit.
Download the list of required documents for renewal

Renewal procedure at the end of your stay

Note: Algerian citizens are subject to a special bilateral agreement. The following provisions may not apply.

At the end of your stay, and depending on your situation, you can apply to stay to look for another job. Depending on your project, there are two possible solutions.

Renewal of your "passeport talent" on the basis of involuntary lack of employment

You can apply for the renewal of your “Passeport talent" residence permit if you no longer have employment for reasons beyond your control (for example, if our contract is not renewed). This extension allows you to look for a new job in the academic field and to benefit from the entitlements acquired during your stay.

As is the case for standard renewal, you must contact Espace Ulys to have your file checked.

The renewal of your "passeport talent" residence permit (and your spouse’s, if need be) must be done at the Préfecture within two months prior to the expiration of your current residence permit or visa. You must contact Espace Ulys, we will check your file and arrange an appointment at the Préfecture du Rhône so you can submit your application for a residence permit.

At the appointment at the Préfecture, and only if your application is complete, you will be issued a receipt for your request for renewal of the "Passeport talent” residence permit.

You will be notified by SMS when your residence permit is ready for collection (approximately 2 months after applying). A tax of €225 is payable in revenue stamps at this appointment.
In order to collect your residence permit, you must make an appointment at the Prefecture using the dedicated platform. This process is only dedicated to those having written confirmation their card is ready for collection.

Download the list of documents required for renewal on the basis of involuntary lack of employment.

Apply for the "Recherche d’emploi/création d’entreprise" permit

The "recherche d’emploi/création d’entreprise" temporary residence permit is for holders of a "passeport talent-chercheur" card who have finished their research but are not eligible for unemployment benefits.

This permit is valid for one year and is not renewable. A tax of €75 is payable in revenue stamps.

This application is done entirely online on the dedicated website.

During this period, you are allowed to work in your chosen field.

At the end of the one-year period, you will be able to apply for a residence permit if you have found a job or started a business. Some residence permits are subject to conditions. Check that your situation matches the criteria for the permit.

Learn more about the eligibility criteria according to your situation.

You reside in Saint-Etienne

You have a "Passeport talent" visa or residence permit

You have a long stay visa (VLS-TS) R311-3 9° L313-20 4° "PASSEPORT TALENT"


The Préfecture of the Loire does not tolerate late applications. Applications made outside the dates of validity of the residence permit (residence permit, receipt, temporary residence permit) will be considered to be "late" and liable to a fine of €180.

Within three months of your arrival
, you must validate your visa, after which it has the same value as a residence permit.
The validation request must be sent online using the dedicated website (website in French, English and Chinese).You will be required to pay a tax of €200 for the validation of your VLS-TS.

Keep in mind that your hosting agreement and your “passeport-talent” visa allow you:
  • to work on the mission mentioned in your hosting agreement on your arrival in France, even if your visa is not yet validated.
  • to come and go within the Schengen Area as you please for the first three months.
Note: the hosting agreement does not allow you to work outside the field stated on the document.

If you are in any doubt about the type of visa you have received, send a copy by email to the Espace Ulys in Saint-Etienne. We can inform you of the procedure to follow.

YOU ARE COMING TO SAINT ETIENNE WITH YOUR SPOUSE: your spouse must have received the same type of visa stating R311-3 and must also have it validated.

You have a long stay visa L313-20 4° "Passeport talent - c. sej. à sollic."


The Préfecture of the Loire does not tolerate late applications. Applications made outside the dates of validity of the residence permit (residence permit, receipt, temporary residence permit) will be considered to be "late" and liable to a fine of €180.

Within two months of your arrival, you must take an appointment at the Préfecture de la Loire to apply for a residence permit. It is advisable to apply as early as possible as it can take a long time to receive an appointment.

Download the list of the "passeport-talent-chercheur" documents required by the Préfecture de la Loire
Only copies of documents will be kept by the Prefecture de la Loire. However, you must have the originals as well. They will be requested by the Préfecture for verificationswhen you collect your receipt.

At the appointment at the Préfecture, and subject to your application being complete, you will receive an Autorisation Provisoire de Séjour (APS), a temporary residence permit and a receipt of first demande. You can legally reside and work in France with the APS while waiting for your residence permit. Alongside your passeport, the APS also allows you to travel outside France.

You will receive a SMS from the Préfecture when your final residence permit is ready. To collect your permit, a tax of €225 is payable in revenue stamps

In order to collect your residence permit, you need to go to the Prefecture from Monday to Friday, from 9am to 11.30am, without an appointment. Upon presentation of the text message confirming the availability of your card and your ID (passport, former residence permit and receipt), you will be given the card.

YOU ARE COMING TO SAINT ETIENNE WITH YOUR SPOUSE: your spouse must have received the same type of visa stating L313-21 and must take an take an appointment at the Préfecture de la Loire. You must accompany your spouse at this appointment.

Procedure for renewing your "Passeport talent" residence permit or changing your status


The Préfecture of the Loire does not tolerate late applications. Applications made outside the dates of validity of the residence permit (residence permit, receipt, temporary residence permit) will be considered to be "late" and liable to a fine of €180.

In the case of a change of status to "Passeport talent-chercheur" (for example, from an “Etudiant" residence permit) you must follow the same procedure as for renewal.

If your stay is extended, your residence permit (and your spouse's if necessary) must be renewed at the local Prefecture within two months prior to the expiry of your current residence permit or visa. You must take an appointment online with the Prefecture de la Loire. It is advisable to apply as early as possible as it can take a long time to receive an appointment.

At this appointment at the Préfecture, and only if your application is complete, you will be issued a receipt for your request for renewal of the "passeport talent” residence permit . Alongwith your passeport, expried residence permit, this receipt will allow you to travel.

You will be notified by SMS when your residence permit is available for collection (approximately two months after the request).  To collect your permit, a tax of €225 is payable in revenue stamps. In order to collect your residence permit, you need to go to the Prefecture from Monday to Friday, from 9am to 11.30am, without an appointment. Upon presentation of the text message confirming the availability of your card and your ID (passport, former residence permit and receipt), you will be given the card.

For all subsequent renewals, you must follow the same procedure, submitting your renewal request within two months prior to the expiry date of your current residence permit.

Download the list of the "passeport-talent-chercheur" documents required by the Préfecture de la Loire.
Only copies of documents will be required to submit the file to the Espace Ulys. However, you must have the originals as well. They will be requested by the Préfecture when you get collect your receipt.

YOU ARE COMING TO SAINT ETIENNE WITH YOUR SPOUSE
: your spouse must also take an appointment with the Prefecture online.You must accompany your spouse at this appointment.

Algerian scientists

Algerian scientists are subject to a special bilateral agreement. You must obtain your residence permit through the Préfecture.

First application for a "scientifique-chercheur" residence permit

The Préfecture of the Loire does not tolerate late applications. Applications made outside the dates of validity of the residence permit (residence permit, receipt, temporary residence permit) will be considered to be "late" and liable to a fine of €180.

Within 2 months of your arrival, you must take a appointment with the Prefecture de la Loire to apply for a residence permit. It is advisable to apply in Prefecture as early as possible as it can take a long time to receive an appointment.

At the appointment at the Préfecture, and only if your application is complete, you will be issued a receipt for your request for renewal of the "Passeport talent” residence permit. Note:This receipt does not grant you the right to travel after your visa expires. You must wait for your residence permit to be able to travel.

You will be notified by SMS when your residence permit is ready for collection (approximately 2 months after applying). A tax of €225 is payable in revenue stamps at this appointment.
In order to collect your residence permit, you need to go to the Prefecture from Monday to Friday, from 9am to 11.30am, without an appointment. Upon presentation of the text message confirming the availability of your card and your ID (passport, former residence permit and receipt), you will be given the card.

Download the list of the "Scientifique-chercheur" documents required by the Préfecture de la Loire.
Only copies of documents will be by the Prefecture. However, you must have the originals as well. They will be requested by the Prefecture for verifications

Procedure for renewing your “Scientifique-chercheur” residence permit or for changing status


The Préfecture of the Loire does not tolerate late applications. Applications made outside the dates of validity of the residence permit (residence permit, receipt, temporary residence permit) will be considered to be "late" and liable to a fine of €180.

In the case of a change of status to "Scientifique-chercheur" (for example from an "Etudiant" residence permit) you must follow the same procedure as for renewal.
If your stay is extended, your residence permit (and your spouse's if necessary) must be renewed at the local Prefecture within two months prior to the expiry of your current residence permit or visa. You must take an appointment online with the Prefecture de la Loire. It is advisable to apply as early as possible as it can take a long time to receive an appointment.

At this appointment at the Préfecture, and only if your application is complete, you will be issued a receipt for your request for renewal of the "passeport talent” residence permit . Alongwith your passeport, expried residence permit, this receipt will allow you to travel.

You will be notified by SMS when your residence permit is available for collection (approximately two months after the request). To collect your permit, a tax of €225 is payable in revenue stamps. In order to collect your residence permit, you need to go to the Prefecture from Monday to Friday, from 9am to 11.30am, without an appointment. Upon presentation of the text message confirming the availability of your card and your ID (passport, former residence permit and receipt), you will be given the card.

For all subsequent renewals, you must follow the same procedure, submitting your renewal request within two months prior to the expiry date of your current residence permit.

Download the list of the "Scientifique-chercheur" documents required by the Préfecture de la Loire.
Only copies of documents will be by the Prefecture. However, you must have the originals as well. They will be requested by the Prefecture for verifications

Renewal procedure at the end of your stay

Note: Algerian citizens are subject to a special bilateral agreement. The following provisions may not apply.

At the end of your stay, and depending on your situation, you can apply to stay to look for another job. Depending on your project, there are two possible solutions.

Renewal of your "Passeport talent" on the basis of involuntary lack of employment


The Préfecture of the Loire does not tolerate late applications. Applications made outside the dates of validity of the residence permit (residence permit, receipt, temporary residence permit) will be considered to be "late" and liable to a fine of €180.

You can apply for the renewal of your “Passeport talent" residence permit if you no longer have employment for reasons beyond your control (for example, if your contract is not renewed). This extension allows you to look for a new job in the academic field and to benefit from the entitlements you acquired during your stay.

As is the case for standard renewal, you must take an appointment to the Prefecture de la Loire in order to apply for your change of status.

Download the list of documents required for renewal on the basis of involuntary lack of employment.

Apply for the "Recherche d’emploi/création d’entreprise" card

The "recherche d’emploi/création d’entreprise" temporary residence permit is for holders of a "passeport talent-chercheur" card who have finished their research but are not eligible for unemployment benefits.
This permit is valid for one year and is not renewable. A tax of €75 is payable in revenue stamps.

This application is entirely done online on a dedicated website.

During this period, you are allowed to work in your chosen field.

At the end of the one-year period, you will be able to apply for a residence permit if you have found a job or started a business. Some residence permits are subject to conditions. Check that your situation matches the criteria for the permit.

Learn more about the eligibility criteria according to your situation.