I am a civil servant

Since January 1, 2021, the United Kingdom has been a third country to the European Union. EU law has ceased to apply in the UK.

The Withdrawal Agreement provides specific provisions for the right of residence and for the maintenance of the working conditions of British nationals settled in France before December 31, 2020. You have until June 30, 2021 to apply online for residence status. The agreement of December 30, 2020 does not modify these provisions in any way.

If you wish to settle in France, you are not covered by the provisions of the Withdrawal Agreement and the steps to be taken are different.

You are concerned if you are a British national who is a member of the French civil service and has the status of permanent or trainee civil servant on the date of the United Kingdom's withdrawal from the European Union.


  • Article 24 of the withdrawal agreement upholds the applicability to British citizens of Article 45 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU) concerning the free movement of workers in the EU, including “the right not to be discriminated against on grounds of nationality as regards employment, remuneration and other conditions of work and employment” and “the right to take up and pursue an activity in accordance with the rules applicable to the nationals of the host State or the State of work”.

    Consequently, Article 24 of the agreement applies Article 45 of the TFEU to British citizens who entered the French civil service before Brexit and those who enter the civil service during the transition period. The same conditions apply to these British citizens as to European citizens: they cannot hold a position with a direct connection with the sovereign attributes of the State or which involve direct or indirect participation in the exercise of government powers by central government or other government bodies.

    In accordance with Article 24 of the withdrawal agreement, British citizens will remain “assimilated” to European citizens in terms of the specific rights granted British citizen workers who enter the civil service up to the end of the transition period. Therefore, the rights of workers (taken in the broad sense to cover civil servants), such as they are guaranteed by Article 45 of the TFEU, are upheld by the withdrawal agreement.

    The rights deriving from their capacity as civil servants or government employees for those British citizens who become civil servants or government employees by 31 December 2020 are therefore upheld, including with respect to access to the civil service and career advancement without the loss of European citizen status being able to be invoked against them.

  • Regarding British citizens who did not make use of their right to free movement in France (ie did not settle in France) before the end of the transition period (31/12/2020), provisions applicable to non-EU citizens with respect to the civil service apply. From January 1st, 2021, they may be recruited as contract government employees without the ability to take up sovereignty positions, pursuant to Article 3-1 of Decree 86-83 of January 17th 1986, Article 2-1 of Decree 88-145 of February 15th 1988 and Article 3-1 of Decree 91-155 of 6 February 6th 1991.