Sick foreigner

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  1. Procedure summary
  2. Does this procedure affect you?
  3. Procedure steps

Procedure summary

Following law n° 2016-274 of 7 March, 2016 related to foreigners’ rights in France, the follow-up of files belonging to sick foreigners on French territory has been changed.  The new procedure which was assigned to the OFII took effect as of 1 January, 2017.

Does this procedure affect you?

You are eligible to this procedure if you fulfil the following requirements:

  • You are a foreigner (except if you are a citizen of a European) country;
  • You regularly live in France;
  • You think that your state of health requires medical care without which your health will be severely compromised;
  • You think that you are unable to have access to the appropriate treatment in your country of origin;

Procedure steps

How do I apply for a sick foreigner?

In order to apply for a residence permit for medical reasons or to apply for a temporary residence authorisation for because of the health condition of your minor child, you must:


Step 1 : Go to the nearest prefecture

In order to make a new application or to renew your residence permit, the prefecture will provide you with:

  • A blank medical certificate to filled in by your physician;
  • An information notice explaining the steps to be taken;
  • and a “MEDICAL PRIVACY” envelope bearing the address of the medical service of the OFII;

The medical certificates or results should not be dropped off at the prefecture (Article L. 1110-4 of the Public Health Code) but sent to the OFII.


Step 2 : Ask the physician you regularly visit to fill in the blank certificate

Go to you regular physician or to the hospital in order to fill in your medical certificate.

It should be carefully filled  as to provide as much information about your state of health as possible or that of your minor child. You can attach other medical papers if necessary.

Careful, make sure that the medical certificate is signed:

  • by yourself: this means that you agree to the transfer of your personal health data and to the electronic follow-up of that same data;
  • signed by the physician and bearing his stamp.

Original documents will be given back to you.


Step 3 : Send the file to the OFII physician yourself

You must send to the OFII the medical certificate filled out by your physician using the “MEDICAL PRIVACY” envelope provided to you by the prefecture.

Also attach all the original medical documents related to your heath situation or that of your minor child (biological analyses, additional tests, hospitalisation report(s), etc.)

Since 1 March, 2019, the sending deadline of medical certificates to the OFII is one month.

However, if at the same time, you applied for asylum since 1 March 2019, the sending dealing of your file is extended by 3 months starting from your visit to the GUDA.

Step 4 : File examination by the OFII

In order to examine your medical file, the OFII physician can ask, while respecting your medical privacy, the physician who filled in your medical certificate for additional information. You will be informed of that.

Therefore, it is important that the OFII can quickly get in touch with you: clearly write down your phone number, your email and your home address.

The OFII physician can also summon you as to carry out additional tests if they deem it necessary. These tests are free of charge. You will not be asked to pay. It should be noted that you do not need to be on an empty stomach during the tests.

On the day of your appointment, you must bring:

  • A document justifying your identity or that of the legal tutor for a minor (e.g. a passport);
  • The additional medical documents related to your health situation (blood tests, hospitalisation report, etc-)

The OFII physician must have in his possession the requested additional information within 15 days as of the day he requested that information. In case you do not have the requested elements on time, you must certify to the medical service of the OFII that you have made the necessary steps.

Failure to respond to the request of the OFII physician, the receipt provided for in article R. 311-4 will not be issued by the prefecture.

It should be noted that the prefect will be informed by the OFII if:

  • You do not go the appointment with the OFII physician or with a colleague of the OFII physicians;
  • You do not justify your identity when you are summoned;
  • You do not carry out the requested additional tests;

The opinion of the colleague

Your medical report is sent to a colleague of the OFII physicians.

The colleague of the OFII physicians can request to talk to you or to carry out additional tests in the presence of a physician of your choice and an interpreter, if applicable.

If the application is for a foreign minor, they must be accompanied by their legal representative.

After deliberation, the colleague give their opinion to the prefect of your place of residence.

The prefect’s decision

The decision regarding your application for a residence permit is taken by the Prefect. It will be notified to you by the Prefecture.

The OFII will not share or notify an information regarding the prefect’s decision.

For more information

It is pointless to go to the OFII if you are not summoned or if you do not have an additional medical document.

For information regarding your application for a residence permit, you can call the following unique number: 01 53 69 53 90 (available from 9 am. to 12 am. and from 1 pm. to 4:30 pm.) or by sending an email to

To know more about all the orders and decisions regarding the medical service of the OFII, click here.

You can find more information regarding reports to parliament of 2019 here, of 2018 here, and of 2017 here.

Watch our video to learn more about sick foreigner

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