The Connexion 243 - January 2023 e-Paper

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The Connexion 243 - January 2023 e-Paper
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What's inside this month's edition

EU to investigate legality of 2021 French inheritance law
A complaint lodged by a British woman against the 2021 French law that seeks to impose forced child heirship rules on foreign residents is being reviewed by the European Commission

French news explained

New rules and changes in France affecting residents and second-home owners

Drivers launch legal challenge to 'shocking' London zone penalties
A group of French residents is preparing legal action over fines, some for thousands of euros, for driving in London's Low and Ultra Low Emission Zones (LEZ and ULEZ)

Power cut risk remains but the 'worst has been avoided'
France is facing the risk of planned power cuts this January but the signs are good that the worst-case scenario of widespread cuts has been averted
The First Lady is right to resisit woke assault on French language
Simon Heffer gives his opinion on how the French seem to jealously guard their language
Ireland-France Brexit boom
New links between France and Ireland, one of the most obvious ‘Brexit benefits’ – for Ireland, at least – continue to be forged
Recruiting UK chalet staff ‘complicated now’
A chalet business owner has spoken of how complicated it has become to recruit people from the UK to work in the Alps
Support needed to campaign for MPs for Britons abroad
Groups supporting the rights of Britons abroad are seeking help with the launch of a new campaign to renew calls for an MP or MPs for citizens overseas
Website now open for Etias
The new Etias pre-approval scheme for visits to the EU will not be operational until November but the website which will be used to register is now live
Retirees’ income clarified
Foreign residents in France on visitor visas (retirees and early retirees) need only show an income equivalent to the ‘net’ Smic minimum wage, not the brut (gross) Smic, to convert their cards to a 10-year carte de résident after five years in France
Energy prices, Etias, health checks... what’s new in 2023
We feature money-orientated, everyday life and environmental updates, and look at new laws and changes to watch out for
Terror fears as Eurostar security to be privatised
Plans to outsource security baggage controls to a private company at the Paris Gare du Nord Eurostar terminal could put passengers at risk of terrorist attacks, customs officers have warned
Human urine is field fertiliser
Last summer, public toilets and male and female urinals were installed in Lyon’s city centre, with the urine used by local farmers to fertilise fields
How much do you need for ‘decent life’ in France?
An economist at a leading research body says €1,634 a month for a single person, or €2,540 for a retired couple
Macron ‘could stand again’
The President, Emmanuel Macron, could run for a third consecutive term – by using a constitutional loophole, a former justice minister claims
Renault revives classic with electric SUV
Renault has unveiled a concept car based on the new Renault 4L – which looks nothing like the old one which was hugely popular in France and abroad
Normandy is 'Europe's most desirable region' for Britons
The Normandy Tourist Board says it proves the naysayers were wrong when they predicted the British would not come back after Brexit
Pensions reform 'will worsen inequality'
Unions say they will call for strike action starting in January if the French government pushes ahead with its plans to raise the retirement age to 65
Make sense of six-month visas
Whether you are American, Australian or - since Brexit - British, if you want an extended stay in France, planning and paperwork are unavoidable
Egg shortages put spotlight on keeping hens at home
Avian flu has led to millions of chickens and other birds having to be killed, sending egg prices soaring and raising fears of shortages
Our dream holiday in Grenoble was on the house
As the cost of living continues to bite, we see how a house swap might be the free holiday solution we are all looking for

Practical advice for living in France

Could you save with EDF’s Tempo contract?
EDF’s Tempo option offers cheaper electricity most of the year in return for paying more on certain winter days when the network is under strain, meaning they could be advant ageous for many second-home owner
Energy rating law ‘puts older houses at risk’
Many historic buildings are at risk under France’s new climate change law, according to the leaders of eight associations dedicated to preserving heritage
Property Watch in Department 39: Jura
Jura only became part of France in 1678 after years of war between French kings and various Burgundy and Habsburg rulers
How can I make my will easier for UK family?
I am making a French will but what else can I do to make it easy for them, most of whom have only limited French?
Buyers can claim interest on house deposit
What happens to the money the notaire asks for before a purchase?
Couple warn of grant scheme ‘frustrations'
The flagship grant programme for energy-saving home renovation, MaPrimeRénov, hit the headlines when the official consumer watchdog warned improvements were needed

Our financial writer answers your money queries on page 33.

You can find more advice for managing your money in France in our Money and Tax section on pages 33 and 34, and online 

Reader questions answered

  • Are there rules on advertising break lengths?
  • Do people still celebrate their name days in France?
  • Why does post office care about the value of items I am sending abroad?
  • Help to rent an armchair for a disabled person
  • Do I need to inform the French authorities about my new EU passport?
  • Solar panel contractor delaying installation: what are my rights?

Subscribers can also find answers to reader questions in the Your Questions section online.

French Living

Visit the crowning glories of France’s long-lived, now long-lost monarchy
Discover the splendid sights of the republic’s former monarchy, from the Hall of Mirrors in Versailles to Margaret of Austria’s royal monastery in Brou, Bourg-en-Bresse
‘It is not about competition and speed, but giving confidence back’
Luc Costermans talks about the association he founded that allows blind people like himself to drive racing cars
‘Consumers want this information. It is a duty for companies to give it’
Nutritional scientist Serge Hercberg talks about the Nutri-Score system he developed to simplify consumer decision making, and how food lobbies continue to fight against its implementation
Mayors in the market for pioneering hydrogen bus
Public transport is the key target market for the zero-emission Hyvia’s Master City Bus H2-TECH, the first hydrogen urban minibus in Europe

More in the January edition

Gardens: A garden to be shared: winter-ready wonder welcomes visitors in January
Property: Dome house is aligned to the sun’s movements
Travel: Travel rules for children
Heritage: Steam train runs on coal – and olives
Culture: Tone down the swearing, swot up on Google Street View... how to translate a great novel
Money: ill our plans protect surviving spouse?
Careers: I qualified as a tour guide and see places with fresh eyes
Food and drink: Classic charcuterie at home