Civil registration


Country Report: Civil registration Last updated: 08/04/22


Forum Réfugiés – Cosi Visit Website

When protection is granted, a “family reference form” is sent to the beneficiary of international protection by OFPRA, with the notification of the OFPRA protection decision or later, when the protection has been granted by the CNDA.

Upon receipt of the family reference form duly completed, signed by the beneficiary of international protection and sent by post, OFPRA begins the instruction for the establishment civil status documents begin. The time limit for issuing documents is 3 months, insofar as possible. For 2018, OFPRA reported a 4.6 months average time for delivering those documents. However, this is only an average and some beneficiaries of international protection wait much longer for their documentation. OFPRA has prioritised the issuance of civil status documents for some categories of persons, for instance unaccompanied children, girls at risk of FGM and relocated refugees.[1]

OFPRA takes into account the documents provided by the beneficiary of international protection in his or her asylum application file, namely foreign civil status documents, identity or travel documents (national identity card, passport). Statements of the beneficiary at the time of filing of his or her application for asylum, during the interview at OFPRA and on the family reference form, are also taken into account.

The personal status of the beneficiary of international protection will continue to apply according to the law of the country of origin for all rights acquired before the grant of international protection. For instance, a religious marriage will be valid in France if the national law of the person considered it as official, even though French law does not recognise this type of union. By way of exception, French law will apply to acts prior to the recognition of the international protection in two cases: (a) French law will prevail in case of a right contrary to French public order e.g. polygamous marriage; and (b) same sex marriage will automatically be recognised pursuant to French law, even if not recognised under the law of the country of origin.

French law applies to all events subsequent to the grant of international protection. The beneficiary may therefore marry, enter into a civil union (PACS) or divorce according to French law.[2]


[1]  OFPRA, 2017 Activity report, 56.

[2]  OFPRA, Guide of procedures, 2015, available at:

Table of contents

  • Statistics
  • Overview of the legal framework
  • Overview of the main changes since the previous report update
  • Asylum Procedure
  • Reception Conditions
  • Detention of Asylum Seekers
  • Content of International Protection
  • ANNEX I – Transposition of the CEAS in national legislation