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French benefit: Ajpa the caregiver or compassionate leave allowance

This is a daily payment to compensate for time taken off work to look after a close relative

Employees are entitled to a maximum of 22 days of Ajpa in one month, up to a limit of 66 days over their working life Pic: ALPA PROD / Shutterstock

There are hundreds of benefits and financial assistance programmes available in France. If you find yourself in a caregiving role you may be eligible for a temporary daily allowance known as Ajpa.

What is Ajpa?

The allocation journalière du proche aidant (Ajpa), known as caregiver or compassionate leave allowance, enables jobseekers and workers, including self-employed people, to take paid time off to look after a close relative with a disability, or who has lost their independence.

Read more: What help is there for people who are carers in France?

Who can apply?

Applicants must be resident in France and be working or receiving unemployment benefit. 

Salaried staff and self-employed workers can apply, as can those undergoing vocational training or who work with a spouse on a farm or in a craft, commercial, liberal or agricultural business 

Ajpa is not available to retirees or to anyone being paid by their relative using their personalised autonomy allowance, or receiving any of the benefits listed here.

The people receiving the care must be a close relative (spouse, child, sibling, aunt, uncle, first cousin, nephew or niece) of the applicant. 

They must have a level of disability that hinders daily life or personal autonomy, have suffered a work accident, or receive certain occupational disease pensions. 

Anyone elderly must be in receipt of the personalised autonomy allowance. 

How much is paid?

The amount of Ajpa is fixed at €62.44 per full day and €31.22 per half-day. 

Employees are entitled to a maximum of 22 days of Ajpa in one month, up to a limit of 66 days over their working life. 

After reaching that threshold, Ajpa requests can be renewed, but must not exceed one year over an employee’s working life.

How to apply

Salaried applicants must ask their employer for caregiver leave in writing at least one month before their planned leave is due to begin. Apart from that step, requesting Ajpa is the same for self-employed people. 

You can find a list of documents needed for the application here.

Benefit claimants can apply for Ajpa at the caf.fr website. Go to My Account, then click on the tab labelled simuler ou demander une prestation (simulate or request a service). 

Every month, you will be sent a form to fill in to receive Ajpa. 

The tab labelled Mes paiements et droits (my payments and rights) will keep a running total of your 66 days. 

Non-benefit claimants must create an account on caf.fr, then download an Ajpa application under the section ‘applying for a benefit’ and the label Accident.  

Good to know 

An employer cannot refuse a request for leave and returning employees should go back to the same or similar job with at least equal pay. 

You can apply for Ajpa for every person you support.

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