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post #11 of 15 (permalink) Old 12-07-2016, 09:51
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Carl, hope the below helps and is understandable.
I have completed the registration process for three campers now, but only for one from the UK, which was the most complex, the other two were for German sourced vans that were newer and had the single CoC document.

Can't help ref the older car and bike but I understand that it is relatively straightforward and more simple than that for the modern motorhome.

For the camper, ifregistered before 2004 (probably much later being a UKvan) you will need Certificates ofConformity for each element of the motorhome.
The reason I mention date is that the law was changed toallow motorhome manufacturers to now issue a single document that covers thewhole vehicle.

In your case you will need one from Auto Trail and one fromMercedes if the vehicle had an Alko chassis that would also be required.
The Mercedes one should be pretty straightforward, mostmanufacturers charge, Fiat charge €150 no idea what Merc will want.

I'm not sure how you will get on with Auto Trail, if theycannot supply the required documentation, you will need to make arrangementswith the DREAL local to your property for a Demande de Réception à Titre Isolé , which will basically be a one offinspection of the vehicle, you will probably also need to get a certificate ofsoundness for the gas system, normally via Veritas.

You will need allof the obvious requirements to be fulfilled i.e.

Proof of residence.
Registrationdocument from the country the vehicle is currently registered in.
Proof of ownershipof vehicle.
Insurance for thevehicle.
Proof ofroadworthiness, in reality this mean getting a Control Technique certificate,which is the French equivelant of an MOT.
A document calledQuitus fiscal which you get from your local Centre Des Impôts (the localtax office), simply states you don't owe any taxes or duties in France on thevehicle.
Demande de Certificat d'Immatriculation, which is the applicationdocument.
The documents from the DREAL.

When your dossier is complete you submit it to yourPrefecture along with the required monetary charge, they will issue you with atemporary document and you will receive the Carte Grise in the post a while later,usually within 10 days.

Some helpful websites, in French but having a French wife should mean no problems there.



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post #12 of 15 (permalink) Old 12-07-2016, 10:43 Thread Starter
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Thank you John - very kind of you to post all that.

Seems a straightforward process - when written down like that - but having had dealings with French officialdom in the past, I will obviously add some expectation of frustration to the process......

Nevertheless, it doesn't seem an impossible task - thank you.
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post #13 of 15 (permalink) Old 12-07-2016, 14:24
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Carl, yes the most difficult frustrating part of the whole procedure was dealing with the French jobs-worths!
Probably the most frustrating one, was on what turned out to be the final visit to the DRIRE, which was what the DREAR was called then, the pleasant person dealing with me agreed that all was in order with vehicle and paperwork but happily told me he couldn't give me the final certificate for the prefecture he would have to send it to me by post to my home address.

The biggest problem I faced on the first one was not being fully aware of all of the requirements, that coupled with the less than helpful staff at the prefecture, each visit would be met with a shake of the head and the statement that another document was required, even when asked to be told exactly what was missing on the return journey a different person demanded another piece of paper.

Subsequent applications were relatively stress free knowing what was needed before first (and only) visit.

Apologies for the lack of spacing's on the earlier post, I prepared it on Word and then cut and pasted, and only just read what was transmitted, when I realised it was too late to edit. Don't know why that happens but I should have been aware as it has happened previously.


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post #14 of 15 (permalink) Old 12-07-2016, 15:01
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We moved here in 2011 and brought with us our 2003 Kontiki, a 2007 Picasso and since then a 2008 Citroen C1, all now re-registered, tedious, lengthy and very bureaucratic but not too difficult.

1. get a certificate of importation from the local office - you need proof of where you live in France in the form of a utility bill in the name of the registered keeper on the V5, that certificate is free of charge and takes about 30 minutes, you will need passports, V5, and possibly proof of ticket from ferry and the ORIGINAL sales certificate is essential, they will not accept anything else,

2. then get a Controle Technique for the vehicle - if you KNOW it needs new headlamps get those done first (that costs around 400€ for the lights), the CT is around 70€ but "special offers can be found.....

for the old vehicle that might cause a problem as lights may not be available, use the internet and you can probably find them (we have a friend with an old Jag who found them eventually),

3. Meanwhile get a "Certificate of Conformity" from the vehicle manufacturer - our Swift one was done by return of e-mail and was foc, the two Citroen certificates each cost £110 from Citroen and took three weeks......

Once you have all of the required paperwork including the import certificate, passports, proof of residence, proof of insurance and everything else the local Sous Prefecture can issue a Carte Gris + immatricuation (registration), that also costs but once again the costs vary so no easy guide.....

Be prepared to have it done within 2 hours, or 10 months depending on how awkward they are feeling - it may go to the bottom of the pile, the person responsible may be away, or the office may simply close for the day as they have too much work...... the excuses are many and varied.

You are supposed to do it within the 6month deadline, but I know vehicles that are still UK registered........

Good luck, feel free to ask if you need help, do remember that "BUREAUCRACY" is a process and a word that was INVENTED IN FRANCE


Any typo that I make means the errorists win.

Any comments above are only MY OPINION and should be read as that.

Last edited by Penquin; 12-07-2016 at 15:08.
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post #15 of 15 (permalink) Old 14-07-2016, 12:51
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When we moved to France 15 years ago, I took a nearly new, continental equipped (i.e. LHD , no probs with headlights etc....) van with me .Took me a year to get the reg changed to French....( you are supposed to do it within 6 months).....In the vehicle registration office they they were ,quite simply , the most unhelpful public sector workers I've ever met. They refused to speak English as will most French public officials, and my French wasn't so good in those days. They would literally just say NO....and not explain all came to the European Conformity document, which I got sorted eventually.
God knows what it'll be like brexit. Having moved now to Portugal, it was easier here but much more expensive to change the French reg to a Portuguese one, but much more expensive....over 2000 euros to re matriculate my 7 year old Hymer.!!!!!
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