WORKING ABROAD

No job, no visa

Obtaining a French work visa was already an ordeal but the financial crisis made life even tougher for foreigners in France.

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Obtaining a French work visa was already an ordeal but the financial crisis made life even tougher for foreigners in France. Gloria A., a 27-year-old American graphic designer, needs to find a new employer soon in order to renew her job permit and stay in France.

Gloria A. came to France in January 2008 on a work contract as a graphic designer for a small publishing company based in Paris.

They were supposed to offer me a permanent contract along with a three-year French work permit. But the company was affected by the global economic downturn and was forced to cut some of the magazines. I was laid off because the company couldn't afford to keep me on.

I'm mainly worried about losing my Carte de Sejour (French work visa) due to my unemployment. I have three months to find a job in order to renew my existing stay/work permit. I am currently collecting unemployment, and working under the table at a bar in Paris.

This particular bar has offered me a full-time position to help renew my visa. However, the French government can reject my visa renewal request if they decide that the job at the bar is something a French national can do.

The bar is near a hostel and I'm fluent in English and Spanish and I speak French. So I'm an asset to the bar.

My only option to keep my carte de sejour is to find a job - end of story! if I have other options, I would love to hear them.

If I dont find a job in time, I may enroll at a French university to improve my French. This will open more doors to pursuing a career abroad. Another option is the PACS (a form of civil partnership) with a very close girlfriend here in Paris."