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I am an Indian citizen (Indian passport holder) and I am in France on a Schengen long stay (Scientific/D visa). My Schengen visa is valid through 28 April 2015. I understand that the key reason I have a long stay visa is because I have a job in France. Due to a variety of reasons, I am planning on giving my employer the 1 month required notice and resigning from my job on the 25th of March 2015.

Since after the 25th of March 2015, I do not have a job anymore, will that invalidate my long stay visa and must I leave France on the 25th of March (about 33 days earlier than the 28th of April validity on my visa)? Does my having a job govern my duration of stay in the Schengen area?

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There is no reason for your long-stay visa to automatically become invalid.

France has none of the “duration of status” or “grace period” business that you find in the US for example. The way the system works is that you typically get a one-year visa or a first carte de séjour and after that you must apply for a new carte de séjour every year (for scientists or “highly qualified workers” it can be valid for more than one year) until you qualify a carte de résident. That's when you can be forced to leave.

Every time you apply for a renewal, the authorities evaluate your circumstances. For example, a slew of students get a denial (and also an obligation de quitter le territoire français) in December (that's September plus some processing time) because they failed at their exams or completed their studies and do not qualify anymore. Having left your job, and unless you qualify under some other provision, your application for a carte de séjour would also be denied.

The authorities can also invalidate a carte de séjour before the end of its regular validity period and I guess it's the same for a long-stay visa but it would take some official decision. In practice you would receive a letter informing you of the decision. I am not sure whether they actually do that as a matter of course merely because you left your job (never heard of it) but it would probably take longer than 30 days anyway.

Your right to circulate in the Schengen area in turns depend on your having a valid French visa or residence permit. Until France decides to invalidate said visa, other Schengen states are not supposed to evaluate themselves whether you qualify for it.

Incidentally, note that if you lost your job instead of having left voluntarily, the carte de séjour cannot be cancelled and you would be entitled to an extra year in any case.

  • Thank you for the link. It helps. In essence, what you are saying is that only under "some special circumstances" can my visa may be invalidated. – dearN Feb 21 '15 at 17:24
  • @drN Yes, although “vous cessez de remplir les conditions prévues pour la délivrance de la carte” could in principle apply to your situation. The most important thing is that a residence permit remains valid until the date that's on it or you have been notified otherwise. It does not become implicitly invalid after leaving your job, the préfet has to take a specific decision (which can incidentally also be appealed). – Gala Feb 21 '15 at 19:40
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While I could not find a definite answer on this, all links I've read (both English and French ones) suggest that a long term visa is valid until it's stamped validity date (usually one year), and until that point it also acts as a residence permit to stay in France. You actualy need to have the necessary permits prior to getting the long term visa, and potentially also register with the OFII in the first two months of it's validity. I could not find any indication that after your registration you can lose your visa before it's stamped date (unless you forget to register with the authorities in the first two months), even if you lose your job, as the visa will act as your residence permit.

Of course you won't be able to extend the visa's validity for another year, as you don't have the necessary prerequisities anymore.

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