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FAQ Fellows

Answers to the most frequently asked questions received by AgreenSkills' fellows.

Will AgreenSkills finance my trip to the country where my host institution is located?

No, you will have to pay for your own tickets to your destination. The mobility allowance you receive from AgreenSkills, in addition to your basic salary, has been anticipated to cover such costs. However, both incoming and outgoing fellows can ask their host or home units, respectively, whether an advance is possible. Fellows are also able to accept travel grants offered by the host or home units, or other institutions, as long as the grants are not funded by the European Commission. 

Do I have to open a French bank account if I am an incoming fellow?

You will need to open a bank account in France in order to be paid. You may visit the Kastler foundation website for a detailed guide on how you may open a bank account.

Is any aid provided for my spouse or family?

Yes, financial and schooling help is available. You can find the details of what INRA offers you on this online guide . The Kastler foundation also provides a map indicating each region’s Euraxess center. Most of them will offer local child care services and schools.

How can I apply for a visa?

You will need a long-stay visa (visa de long séjour)  for a stay of more than three months. This visa is compulsory when a foreigner wishes to live in France for a period of more than three months. Generally, you will need:

- A passport, together with a photocopy of your passport, valid for the duration of your stay in France.

- The visa application form.

- Proof of the purpose of your stay, i.e. the original and a photocopy of theconvention d’accueilsigned by the head of the host establishment and bearing the official stamp of the prefecture.

- Recent, identical and good-quality full-face identity photographs in color (3.5 cm x 4.5 cm). No hats or thick-rimmed, tinted, spectacles should be worn in these photos.

We strongly advise you to contact or visit the French consulate in your region, which will be able to inform you of the exact documents needed and the waiting period for a visa.

Do I need a French social security number?

Yes, Registration with the Social Security is compulsory for anyone residing on French territory for more than three months. You may request affiliation to the CMU (Universal health insurance coverage). The CMU allows you to obtain partial refunds for medical care and medications. An overview of France’s health care cost assistance programs can be found here .

There may be a bilateral agreement between France and your home country. Click here to find out whether your home country has a bilateral agreement with France. Please refer to the agreement for more information on health matters:  As the Social Security only covers part of medical care, we strongly recommend that you take out a supplementary health insurance policy, what is called a « mutuelle » in France. It can also cover any house damage and civil liability insurance. For instance, through ABC-Assurances/Axa-Assurances, the Kastler foundation offers insurance policies suited to the needs of international researchers in France.

Do I need to have a medical check-up if I am an incoming fellow?

Medical check-ups are a requirement by some institutions for new members of staff and this should be brought to your attention by local HR personnel at your host institution. At INRA, all incoming fellows must have a medical check-up done once they arrive in France by a certified and approved physician. If you are appointed at a host unit belonging to INRA, you can ask local HR personnel to provide you with a list of approved physicians. You will then have to make an appointment with a physician, asking for a general medical exam for employment within a public institution, and you will have to provide them with the form entitled,Mémoire d’honoraires médicaux, which the physician must then complete. You can then return the form to Human Resources. You should not pay for the check-up yourself; the payment will be made by INRA upon receipt of the completed form.

How can I find accommodation?

Some universities have residence halls for students, which you can find listed on their website. You may also find associations who will be ready to help you in your search. For incoming fellows to France, we encourage you to visit the Kastler foundation website where you will find a map indicating the websites of universities in each region. INRA provides you with some indications in its Handbook on social policy . Outgoing fellows should get in touch with administrative staff at their host institution who can provide them with useful information on finding campus and non-campus accommodation.

As an incoming fellow, will I have to pay French taxes?

Yes, but you should first check whether your country has signed an agreement with France. You will find the list here . If there is no agreement, the normal tax regime will be applied should the duration of your stay in France surpass 6 months. You can read more about the French tax system, including income tax on individuals, in the following document , provided by the Ministry of Economy, Finance, and Industry. You must declare your income on www.impots.gouv.fr and pay the taxes for any French or foreign revenue you may receive.

Do I have to reference the fellowship granted by AgreenSkills in my publications?

Yes. All publications relating to the work you are conducting or have conducted must acknowledge the contribution of the AgreenSkills' fellowship programme. The following format should be used under the Acknowledgements section of your paper, or under a section dedicated to funding:

“[Fellow's name] has received the support of the EU in the framework of the Marie-Curie FP7 COFUND People Programme, through the award of an AgreenSkills/AgreenSkills+ fellowship (if AgreenSkills programme: under grant agreement n° 267196) (under grant agreement n°609398)”