Reduction or withdrawal of reception conditions


Country Report: Reduction or withdrawal of reception conditions Last updated: 10/07/24


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As of 2024, this will be affected by the provisions of the new asylum law: see Changes to the legal framework: new law of 26 January 2024.

Apart from the withdrawal of reception conditions following the end of the right to remain, specific conditions are foreseen in law to allow for the reduction or withdrawal of material reception conditions, both accommodation and ADA.

According to Articles L. 551-15 (refusal) and L. 551-16 (withdrawal) Ceseda, as amended in 2018, material reception conditions can be refused or withdrawn where the applicant:

  1. Without legitimate reason, has not presented themselves to relevant authorities when required, has not responded to an information request or has not attended interviews related to the asylum application;[1]
  2. Has provided false statements concerning their identity or personal situation, in particular their financial situation;[2]
  3. Has made a subsequent application or, without legitimate reason, has not made an application within 90 days of entry into the French territory;[3]
  4. Exhibits violent behaviour or serious disrespect of the house rules of the centre.[4]

OFII is competent to decide on the suspension, withdrawal or refusal of material reception conditions. As required by European law, recalled by the Council of State in 2019,[5] decisions on refusal or withdrawal of material reception conditions must be written and motivated.[6] In case of suspension, a letter stating the intention to suspend material reception conditions is sent to the asylum seeker, who then has 15 days to challenge this decision through an informal appeal (i.e., written observations). All decisions relating to the refusal or withdrawal of reception conditions can be appealed before the Administrative Court under the common rules of administrative law.

In cases of subsequent applications, some Prefectures systematically reduce reception conditions of asylum seekers. In Lyon, Marseille, Paris and its surroundings, no subsequent claimants can benefit from reception conditions. In a few cases, subsequent claimants can benefit from these conditions after demonstrating their particular vulnerability and their specific needs in terms of accommodation. It is also possible after these 15 days to lodge an appeal before the administrative court.[7]

The law describes the procedure to be followed by reception centres management and by the Prefect once a decision on the asylum claim which ends the right to remain has been adopted.[8] OFII informs the reception centre management where the asylum seeker is accommodated that the right to reception conditions has ended and that the provision of accommodation will be terminated upon a specific date. Rejected asylum seekers can formulate a request to remain 1 month in order to have time to plan their exit of the centre.

The management of reception centres has to inform OFII and the Prefect of the Département in case of a prolonged and non-motivated absence of an asylum seeker from the reception centre, as well as any violent behaviour or serious disrespect of the community life rules.[9]

In 2021, OFII took 31, 458 decisions of withdrawal of reception conditions and 16,877 such decisions were taken in the first 7 months of 2022.[10] There is no more recent data on this crucial issue as OFII does not communicate this figure (here obtained by parliamentarians). The reasons are not known, but the refusal of orientation in the framework of national reception scheme seems be the main explanation of these high figures: in 2021 and 2022, out of 48,230 people who were offered an orientation outside Ile-de-France (Paris region), 12,124 refused and 5,704 who accepted did not go to the designated accommodation, leading in total to a deprivation of reception conditions for 17,828 people.[11] This is also indirectly confirmed by the significant increase in 2021 and 2022 of refusal and cessation decisions based on the refusal of an accommodation proposal or departure from a reception centre (from 2,583 and 2,645 in 2019 and 2020 to 8,359 in 2021 and 11,907 in 2022),[12] although OFII claims it cannot differentiate this data between those who received such a decision and had received an orientation measure and those who received these decisions without having received an orientation measure.

The number of asylum seekers without material reception conditions is an increasingly important and worrying issue. If we compare the number of asylum applications pending at the end of 2023 according to Eurostat (146,175) and the number of asylum seekers benefitting from reception conditions at this date (102,196 persons in total at the end of December 2023 according to OFII),[13] this means more than 40,000 asylum seekers do not have reception conditions in France.

The assessment to deny or withdraw reception conditions does not take into account the risk of destitution.

Asylum seekers should pay a part of accommodation cost when they have sufficient resources (very rare in practice).

In French law, there is no official possibility to limit reception conditions on the basis of a large number of arrivals.






[1] Articles L.551-15 (refusal) and L. 551-16 (withdrawal) Ceseda.

[2] Articles L. 551-15 (refusal) and L. 551-16 (withdrawal) Ceseda.

[3] Articles L. 551-15 (refusal) and L. 551-16 (withdrawal) Ceseda.

[4] Articles L. 551-15 (refusal) and L. 551-16 (withdrawal) Ceseda.

[5] Council of State, Decision 428530, 31 July 2019, available in French at:

[6] Articles L. 551-15 (refusal) and L. 551-16 (withdrawal) Ceseda.

[7] Practice-informed observation by Forum Réfugiés and partners, January 2024.

[8] Article R. 552-11 Ceseda.

[9] Article R. 552-6 Ceseda.

[10] Assemblée nationale, Rapport fait au nom de la Commission des lois sur le projet de loi de finances 2023, 6 October 2022, available in French at:

[11] Assemblée nationale, Rapport fait au nom de la Commission des finances sur l’orientation directive, 24 May 2023, available in French at:

[12] Ibid.

[13] OFII, Publication on twitter, January 2024.

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