Civil Unions in France?


ATOUT FRANCE/Emmanuel Valentin
© ATOUT FRANCE/Emmanuel Valentin

Reading time: 0 minPublished on 4 January 2023

A PACS (Pacte Civil de Solidarité or domestic partnership contract) can be signed by two members of the opposite or same sex, who either cannot or do not want to marry. At least one partner must be a French citizen. PACS does not alter Family Law concerning adoption and marriage.

It is, however, an attempt to provide more protection and stability to couples opting for such a union. PACS, officially recognized by the French Government, offers protection in the following areas:

  • Housing

In case the lease- or rental-agreement-holding partner leaves or dies, the lease or rental agreement is automatically transferred into the name of the remaining partner.

  • Property

Unless otherwise indicated, assets are presumed to belong to both partners equally.

  • Financial Status

PACS partners can file a joint income tax declaration beginning with the third year of their officially partnered life together and may benefit from certain tax credits from that point onward.

  • Social Security and Employment

One partner can benefit from the other partner's social security and health insurance. Both partners have the right to request vacation at the same time. In case one partner dies, the other is entitled to a type of family leave.

  • Obligations

Partners must help each other mutually and materially. Partners are responsible for debts incurred by both and for daily living expenses and housing.


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