The French Tech visa revamped!

Published 2019-08-13 08:36

The French Tech visa has just been reviewed. Since March this year, the program has allowed more companies to bring in skilled foreign labor.

The French Tech visa has just been revised to better meet the needs of French start-ups and established in France. Launched in 2013 by the Ministry of the Economy, the French Tech project aims to support French start-ups on the international market. The project is aimed at companies meeting specific criteria and including several components ranging from promotion and international development assistance to attract investors and international ideas. It is in this context that was created the "French Tech Visa", set up in January 2017 and reviewed in March 2019. We review, in this article, this visa that revolutionizes the recruitment of foreign talent.

What changed?

Since March 2019, two main things have changed - the first is that more companies are eligible to employ foreign labor through the French Tech visa. Before this change, only a hundred companies that had passed the Pass French Tech program could be eligible. In addition, candidates no longer require any specific qualifications to be eligible for the French Tech visa. Under the old formula, a candidate absolutely needed to hold a master's degree.

What is the French Tech visa?

This visa aims to attract foreign talent to France by facilitating and speeding up the paperwork for recruitment.

To apply for this visa, you must, first of all, find an eligible French company (meeting the criteria listed on the French Tech website). The recruitment process then depends on each company. Once recruited, the foreign worker can launch his application for a long-stay visa (which his family can also benefit from) provided he has:

A contract of employment of a minimum duration of 3 months with a French company corresponding to the criteria of the French Tech.

A gross annual salary of at least twice the French minimum wage (ie € 36,509.20). 

How is this visa innovative?

While there are many investor visas such as the Tier-1 in the UK, The startup-Denmark or the Work visa Entrepreneur in New Zealand, to name but three, employee-only visas and demanding not significant financial resources are more scarce. The French tech visa brings a real flexibility on the recruitment of qualified foreign workers in the field of start-ups by allowing to hire the most qualified people regardless of their geographical origin.

Unlike the US visa, the H-1B (which is reserved for qualified foreign employees), it is not necessary to prove that the company tried to recruit in France before opening up to the international market for get the French Tech visa. Moreover, it is not necessary to pay disproportionate immigration fees (the visa costs a total of € 368) or to require a minimum level of study.

A significant change, therefore, for foreign workers who have the qualities sought by French start-ups and eager to emigrate to France.