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Expatriates of French nationality returning to France as employees have their Social Security rights active and retroactive from their first day of employment.

Problems arise for their spouses and adult children (minor children are directly dependent on the worker’s coverage): since the Protection Universelle Maladie (PUMa – Universal Health Protection) reform, the French Healthcare System Caisse Primaire d’Assurance Maladie (CPAM – Primary Health Insurance Fund) requires that European nationals and French nationals returning from expatriation provide proof of residence for three consecutive months in France in order to be eligible for French Social Security coverage.

Although we systematically advise our clients to take out private insurance covering their family until they are fully affiliated with CPAM, this is a partial solution.

In fact, these coverages do not cover their family members of French nationality because it is impossible for private insurance companies in France to insure a French national before he or she is reintegrated into the general Social Security system.

However, it is possible to avoid this problem, as long as it is anticipated well in advance.

What is the solution to avoid this problem?

Indeed, a solution exists to avoid this problem but it requires addressing the issue of returning to France before leaving on expatriation:

It is essential to contact the Caisse des Français à l’Etranger (CFE –
Fund for French Nationals Abroad) before the expatriation and to take the necessary measures to inform it of the expatriation. The expatriate and his/her family must also declare their departure to the CPAM and return the family’s “Cartes Vitale”, to allow the CFE to take over. These elements are also part of the Expatriation Checklist, which precedes any outbound support from Home Conseil Relocation.

for French Nationals Abroad) before the expatriation and to take the necessary measures to inform it of the expatriation. The expatriate and his/her family must also declare their departure to the CPAM and return the family’s “Cartes Vitale”, to allow the CFE to take over. These elements are also part of the Expatriation Checklist, which precedes any outbound support from Home Conseil Relocation.

Then, after their return to France, the family must inform the CFE of their return, and request coverage for three months in France until the family can start the process for the reactivation of their Social Security rights.

What if the family has already expatriated and has not informed the CFE?

If the family has not made the necessary arrangements before leaving abroad with the CFE, it is not possible for the spouse or adult children to subscribe to the CFE’s three-month temporary coverage after their return to France.

In this case, the only possible solution to benefit from health coverage during this three-months period is to subscribe to an insurance policy abroad covering the spouse and adult children in France.

Do not hesitate to contact us for more information on these topics!

Sources :

https://www.legifrance.gouv.fr/affichCodeArticle.do;jsessionid=DA8155C2DFE42CE287DA6B92E32324E4.tplgfr42s_1?idArticle=LEGIARTI000033712581&cidTexte=LEGITEXT000006073189&categorieLien=id&dateTexte=

https://www.legifrance.gouv.fr/affichCode.do;jsessionid=DA8155C2DFE42CE287DA6B92E32324E4.tplgfr42s_1?idSectionTA=LEGISCTA000006156079&cidTexte=LEGITEXT000006073189&dateTexte=20190418

https://www.legifrance.gouv.fr/affichTexte.do?cidTexte=JORFTEXT000031663208&categorieLien=id

https://www.legifrance.gouv.fr/affichLoiPreparation.do?idDocument=JORFDOLE000037485357&type=general&typeLoi=proj&legislature=15

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