Over-60s must now sit French language test

All applicants for French nationality after April 1 will be required to take a new tougher French language test.

26 February 2020
By Oliver Rowland

This also applies to those aged 60 and above, and some with chronic illnesses or disabilities, who were previously exempted from the formal test and had their French evaluated at a prefecture interview. 

Now exemption from the French test, which is taken at one of many approved language centres, is only possible for those with a doctor’s certificate proving they are too ill or disabled to take it – or those with another approved diploma proving their language level.

The test is also being made longer with two written tests in addition to existing oral and listening parts.

The level required will remain European B1 intermediate but old test certificates will not be valid if you send your dossier after April 1.

A record 3,827 British residents were granted nationality in 2019, up from 3,124 in 2018, 1,605 in 2017, 439 in 2016 and 320 in 2015.

Even so, Britons represented just 5% of all those granted nationality in 2019.

Only 6.5% of Britons were refused, compared to 30% overall.

Grounds included insufficient work income, or criminal records.


See also: Where can I sit a language test to become French? and I sat culture test to become French

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