work permitThe employee status change procedure concerns foreign nationals who hold a valid residence permit in France and who wish to obtain employee status.

The “employee” status change procedure does not only concern students, even if it is the latter who are most often affected by this procedure.

It is established case law that the procedure for applying for work authorization is compulsory when the foreigner wishes to hold a full-time job, even in the case where he is already authorized to work because of his student status. The employment contract must, therefore, have been favorably targeted by the administration.

The circular of January 12, 2012, relating to changes in the status of students relaxed the old provisions of the circular of May 31, 2011, relating to the control of immigration known as the “ Guéant circular ”.

The new text recalls the provisions of article L.311-11 of the Ceseda (non-opposition of the employment situation to the student holder of a provisional residence permit of six months having an employment contract with remuneration at less than 1.5 times the minimum wage).

The procedure for changing employee status cannot concern:

– a person holding a simple tourist or business travel visa;

– an employee temporarily posted to a French company and who has undertaken to return to his country of origin at the end of his mission.

– a foreigner not staying regularly in France.



The employee status change file must be filed with the prefecture of the employee’s domicile and must include the following documents:

-The employment contract for foreign workers in four copies of form n ° 13653*01 which can be downloaded from the website of the Ministry of Immigration.

– the commitment for Ofii payment;  (OFII is the Office for Immigration and Integration)

– the order of appointment if the employer is a public person

– proof of registration of the company or association (Kbis extract, K extract or registration at the prefecture)

– the copy of the company or association articles

– a copy of the single personnel register or personnel movements if the company employs more than fifty employees;

– a copy of the quarterly or monthly declarations made to the Urssaf or the MSA and tax services;

– a motivation letter drawn up by the employer;

-the supporting documents for the research carried out to fill the position offered to the future employee. It should be noted that these documents are only essential when the employment situation is opposable. Otherwise, they are not mandatory.

– a copy of the passport or proof of identity for nationals of the European Union;

– the curriculum vitae and diplomas of the future employee; the diplomas must be translated into French by an approved translator;

– a copy of the valid residence permit.

Additional information may be requested for the purposes of examining the file, either from the employee or the employer.



After studying the employee’s file, if a favorable opinion is given on the student’s request for a change in status, the foreign manpower service will send two copies of the contract favorably targeted to Ofii, the commitment to pay the fee corresponding to the nature of the work permit issued and notify the prefectural services of its decision. The Ofii services then send the employer a summons for the employee’s medical examination.

After having passed the medical examination, the employee receives the two contracts referred to by the DIRECCTE and by the Ofii before being issued their residence permit. The Ofii accounting officer then sends the employer the request for payment of the fee.

The medical examination must take place within three months following the favorable opinion of the DIRECCTE. Otherwise, the work permit may be withdrawn.