In order to work in France, foreign nationals of countries outside the European Economic Area (EEA) and Switzerland generally need to request a work permit. However, under certain conditions, researchers holding an employment contract may be exempted from the work permit requirement if their host institution provides them with a Hosting Agreement (Convention d'accueil).
If you have a scientific status or a "passeport talent-chercheur" status:
The "Passeport talent-chercheur" or the "Scientifique" (Scientific) residence permit entitles you to work within the framework of the activity specified in the hosting agreement which enabled you to obtain the current residence permit. (Section B of Hosting Agreement, line “Nature de la recherche ou de l’enseignement universitaire” (Type of research or university teaching).
No additional formalities are required.
There is a possibility to combine several scientific jobs by signing several hosting agreements. Moreover, you can also work for an another organization as part of your research, provided that there is a written agreement with your main employer.
If the organization for which you will be working does not have the authority to issue hosting agreements, you will need to apply for a work permit. In this case, the enforceability of the employment contract cannot be applied because your scientist-researcher status goes beyond the regulatory framework.
If you are a doctoral student, you can work alongside your studies at a level of:
- 50% of a full-time equivalent (FTE), or 803 hours (1607 hours/2) for an Algerian national
- 60% of a full-time equivalent (FTE) or 964 hours for other nationalities - non-EU nationals
If you have student status and a doctoral contract, you will need a work permit.
How to request a work permit?
Applications for work permits for PhD students with a "student" residence permit must be submitted to the DIRECCTE (Territorial Unit of the Regional Directorate for Entreprise, Competition, Consumption, Labour and Employment) of your place of residence
Document required (copy of each document) :
- A valid residence permit ("student" CST or "récepissé" or visa validated by OFII stamps)
- Passport pages stating the identity and validity dates
- A current student card
- A proof of address
- A form CERFA 15186 * 03 to be completed by the employer, downloadable here.
Additional documents (depending on your situation):
- Doctoral contract
- Contract ATER and certificate of employment stating the date of taking up office
- Convention CIFRE
You must contact the Territorial Unit of DIRECCTE according to your place of residence. Visit http://direccte.gouv.fr and select your region to find the contact information.
Formalities to be completed before hiring (by employer):
Before hiring, the employer must send an employment declaration to the prefecture - a copy of residence permit and work permit within two working days prior to hiring.
If the foreign worker presents a valid proof of registration with Pôle Emploi, this declaration is not necessary.
- When to apply for a work permit? See this practical guideline.