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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello,

I am a Non-EU and moving to France with my EU spouse. I have been doing research in regards to paperwork for the carte de sejour and also purchasing property and have noticed that France will request for a copy of my birth certificate. I have never held a copy of my birth certificate and I was born in a country where it is not possible to have one sent to me, or even have a chance to request one. I have an Australian passport and citizenship papers that state my date of birth and location of birth. I have never had issues in Australia with using those two documents for proof of birth. Will we have issues by me not having my birth certificate? Thank you in advance.
 

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If it is truly impossible to obtain a birth certificate from your country of birth, then I guess the French will have to accept your Australian citizenship papers. However, you should be prepared to "discuss" this firmly, but calmly with every French office that will ask for a birth certificate. If your country of birth has an Embassy or Consulate in France, it may be a good idea to get some sort of confirming statement or document from them if possible.
Cheers,
Bev
 

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Hello,

I am a Non-EU and moving to France with my EU spouse. I have been doing research in regards to paperwork for the carte de sejour and also purchasing property and have noticed that France will request for a copy of my birth certificate. I have never held a copy of my birth certificate and I was born in a country where it is not possible to have one sent to me, or even have a chance to request one. I have an Australian passport and citizenship papers that state my date of birth and location of birth. I have never had issues in Australia with using those two documents for proof of birth. Will we have issues by me not having my birth certificate? Thank you in advance.
I don't want to discourage you, but it's going to be a very rough ride without any birth certificate. I agree with what Bev told you, but is there any possible way for someone you know to procure one for you? For example, when I needed another copy of my birth certificate, my parents went and got it for me. They unfortunately had to travel a fair bit (because I needed that plus an apostille stamp, which were basically on opposite sides of the state), but thank goodness, they were willing and able to do that for me. Otherwise, you may want to try and consider getting some sort of written reason as to why that is impossible, and getting it notarized by the consulate of the country where you were born. Paperwork that physically will back up what you are saying will go a long way with the bureaucracy.
 

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I suspect Bev and Julialynn don't realise that it's not possible to get birth certificates from some countries.

It's hard to advise you, but if it is indeed not possible you may be able to get a document from Australia that will serve the purpose and I think you should look into that. Otherwise I suggest you write to the French Embassy (as opposed to the Consulate) in Australia and ask their advice.

Good luck.
 

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I don't think the Embassy will take any interest in this. The whole matter is a consular matter. But I agree with the advice to take it up with them at the earliest opportunity, to see what documentation will be accepted (if any).
 

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I suspect Bev and Julialynn don't realise that it's not possible to get birth certificates from some countries.

It's hard to advise you, but if it is indeed not possible you may be able to get a document from Australia that will serve the purpose and I think you should look into that. Otherwise I suggest you write to the French Embassy (as opposed to the Consulate) in Australia and ask their advice.

Good luck.
I do realize all too well. I used to work with refugees in the US, and lack of identification papers (namely birth certificates, among others) was something that often caused issues, but generally since they have paperwork backing up their refugee status, it also gave them a bit more latitude. This is unfortunately much less the case with asylees, who are pretty much completely on their own, with almost no government protection or help. And while their reasons for their lack of papers are just as important as that of refugees, because of their status, they are apparently expected to have thought of fleeing with all their identification papers. That, however is the US. I can't imagine it's much better in France, though. And while I know I've heard of countries that essentially only give out one birth certificate for a life time, which causes a whole other host of problems, I also think we all know that most bureaucrats only see what is required on paper and are generally unwilling to do anything beyond that. I think it's always best to at least have paperwork backing up what you are saying, so they can't try to just hand you off to someone else, or tell you there's nothing they can do.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Unfortunately I no longer have living family members that I know of (small family) and there is no sign of any documentation anywhere in old files. My country of birth stated it would be very difficult for me to obtain a copy of my birth certificate with my lack of documentation from my parents side and it may take more than a year to hear back from them if I am "lucky". Hopefully all goes well with future transactions!
 

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Unfortunately I no longer have living family members that I know of (small family) and there is no sign of any documentation anywhere in old files. My country of birth stated it would be very difficult for me to obtain a copy of my birth certificate with my lack of documentation from my parents side and it may take more than a year to hear back from them if I am "lucky". Hopefully all goes well with future transactions!
I'm really sorry to hear that, mm, that is rough. I think the next best thing in that case is to go to the local French consulate, as suggested, as they will best be able to counsel you what you can get instead. I hope you'll be able to get some sort of paper that will work for you!
 

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Unfortunately I no longer have living family members that I know of (small family) and there is no sign of any documentation anywhere in old files. My country of birth stated it would be very difficult for me to obtain a copy of my birth certificate with my lack of documentation from my parents side and it may take more than a year to hear back from them if I am "lucky". Hopefully all goes well with future transactions!
In this situation I would still consider that you should go through the process and formally apply, and keep copies of any application, or any evidence that you have done so. Being able to show these supports your case, and also proves a genuine issue to any official.

"Very difficult" doesn't necessarily mean impossible, although that might be the long-term outcome. While such a long wait might be frustrating, it would be worth a try to gain what of course would be a valuable document for you. And sometimes things (and bureaucratic processes) can surprise you. At the least, you would know that you have tried everything possible, and have evidence that you can't get it, if it turned out that way.

That won't help you in the meantime, of course. The easiest route is to have a statement confirming that you have no birth certificate, and are unable to get one, notarised by your Embassy, and produce that with your other documents when asked. It's not as unusual as you might think, so don't be worried, just explain your situation carefully, and try to keep a good humour. If someone insists you must have a birth certificate, even after you've (politely) explained, ask to see their supervisor. :) And keep cool! :)
 

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I do realize all too well. I used to work with refugees in the US, and lack of identification papers (namely birth certificates, among others) was something that often caused issues, but generally since they have paperwork backing up their refugee status, it also gave them a bit more latitude. This is unfortunately much less the case with asylees, who are pretty much completely on their own, with almost no government protection or help. And while their reasons for their lack of papers are just as important as that of refugees, because of their status, they are apparently expected to have thought of fleeing with all their identification papers. That, however is the US. I can't imagine it's much better in France, though. And while I know I've heard of countries that essentially only give out one birth certificate for a life time, which causes a whole other host of problems, I also think we all know that most bureaucrats only see what is required on paper and are generally unwilling to do anything beyond that. I think it's always best to at least have paperwork backing up what you are saying, so they can't try to just hand you off to someone else, or tell you there's nothing they can do.
Easy now! Bureaucrats are just people like you and me. Often they don't have the authority to do things, so they're obliged to hand things over to someone else. I've found most to be as helpful as they can, if you treat them with courtesy and respect, and ask for help.

In terms of refugees, documentation can _often_ be destroyed on purpose. Where refugees have no documentation, it means things can be a little harder, and may take significantly longer. But the whole refugee process can be done easily enough (although it is still a step-by-step process) without that documentation, and a pathway to getting new documents (or indeed new documents for travel, if needed) can be provided as part of the grant of refugee status.

Adding a birth date for a refugee (or indeed creating one), although important, is actually a pretty minor thing, as part of the processing for people being assessed as refugees.
 

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Although it's becoming a bit less common, there are lots of people (in the US, too) who have no birth certificate and who cannot get one. In the States, they'll accept various other documents - baptismal certificate, school entry certificate, basically anything obtained fairly early in life that indicates your (approximate, if necessary) date and place of birth.

However, the French can be kind of stubborn about these things. I think Kaju has the right idea - you need to pursue the issue with the government of the country where you were born and keep any and all correspondence related to the matter. If at all possible, try to get some form of statement either from that government or from the Australian government attesting to your lack of a birth certificate and mentioning whatever document(s) the Australian government accepted in lieu of a birth certificate when they granted you nationality.

If you play it calmly and offer lots of paper to support your cause, the French should ultimately accept it - because for those who take French nationality, we get a "French birth certificate" to be used in lieu of our original one. (Saves a bundle in translation fees!) If you explain it in terms that relate it to the French situation, it will take some time, but you will be able to prevail - assuming you have enough official paperwork to back up your story.
Cheers,
Bev
 

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Kaju will know, but it's my recollection that you are required to provide a birth certificate (or relevant substitute document) to obtain an Australian passport, so there must be a suitable document somewhere. It may be worth checking with the Australian Department of Immigration to see what they have in their files/archives - that in itself may require a formal Right to Information request.

BTW, I was not required to produce a birth certificate in order to purchase property in France, though I agree it's always best to have one.

As far as substitute documents are concerned, I wouldn't think that's uncommon in France where lots of birth certificates were destroyed during 2 world wars, so I'm pretty sure that the administration would be able to cope with the circumstance. And as Kaju says, it's best to put in a request for the birth certificate with the OP's home country Embassy and get a written response.
 

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I will say that I have gotten out of producing certain documents here in France, so it is definitely possible. However, the key seems to be to offer up something that confirms or certifies the same information (and, if possible, that looks appropriately "official"). You also need to keep your cool in presenting it and telling them that it's the best you can offer. (Being apologetic is even better.)
Cheers,
Bev
 

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Kaju will know, but it's my recollection that you are required to provide a birth certificate (or relevant substitute document) to obtain an Australian passport, so there must be a suitable document somewhere. It may be worth checking with the Australian Department of Immigration to see what they have in their files/archives - that in itself may require a formal Right to Information request.

BTW, I was not required to produce a birth certificate in order to purchase property in France, though I agree it's always best to have one.

As far as substitute documents are concerned, I wouldn't think that's uncommon in France where lots of birth certificates were destroyed during 2 world wars, so I'm pretty sure that the administration would be able to cope with the circumstance. And as Kaju says, it's best to put in a request for the birth certificate with the OP's home country Embassy and get a written response.
You can get an Australian Passport with a Birth Certificate, but it's not essential. An Australian Naturalisation Certificate, or an existing Australian Passport will do fine instead. If there's no DOB, sex or place of birth on the naturalisation certificate, you'll need a foreign passport that shows that. Along with either 2 or 3 other supporting documents (Medicare, DL, rates notice, bank statement, etc depending on what you have.

It may be possible if born in Australia without a Birth Certificate to apply for a late (!) registration of birth with the relevant Registrar of Births, Deaths and Mariiages.

I don't know much about it really, as Passports are issued by the Australian Passport Office, which is part of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, rather than the Department of Immigration and Border Protection, which I'm rather more familiar with. :)

The thing is, lots of people don't have Birth Certificates, may be Australian Citizens that have never travelled so don't have a Naturalisation Certificate or Passport. It's a simple case of then contacting an Australian Passport Office (or Embassy/High Commission if you're outside Australia). Let's face it, anyone doing that is not going to be the first! :)

People would be surprised what can be done! ;)
 

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You need to obtain a "jugement déclaratif de naissance" which is a document that replaces a birth certificate when for different reasons this cannot be obtained.

http://circulaires.legifrance.gouv.fr/pdf/2011/11/cir_34124.pdf

This very long document deals with all aspects of the registration of births and on page 16 you will see that you need to obtain this jugement, and from page 11-15 you will find instructions on how to proceed.
 

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You need to obtain a "jugement déclaratif de naissance" which is a document that replaces a birth certificate when for different reasons this cannot be obtained.

http://circulaires.legifrance.gouv.fr/pdf/2011/11/cir_34124.pdf

This very long document deals with all aspects of the registration of births and on page 16 you will see that you need to obtain this jugement, and from page 11-15 you will find instructions on how to proceed.
Does this apply to non-French people born of non-French parents in a foreign country?
 

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Does this apply to non-French people born of non-French parents in a foreign country?
"Un intérêt d'ordre public s'attache à ce que toute personne résidant habituellement en France, même si elle est née à l'étranger et possède une nationalité étrangère, soit pourvue d'un état civil."

P 16
 
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