Granted, understanding the subtleties of the law is never easy. But if you have to do it in a foreign language, and deal with the logic and principles that are often just as foreign, it can become a downright nightmare! In an effort to help you find your way in the maize that is the French legal system, we have put together a few tips.
So what’ the first thing you should do when you are confronted with a legal issue in France ? A good place to start would be the “legal advice” section of our blog. We cover many topics, so you might find an article that deals directly with your problem.
One of our frequent contributors is Jean Taquet, a French consultant who has an excellent knowledge of the French and American laws and bureaucratic systems. He provides solid advice through his newsletter, so don’t hesitate to subscribe, and read the past issues on his website. You can even send him questions.
You can also get information in English directly from the French government on Legifrance.gouv (online publication of legal texts). This official website providse translations for France’s main legal texts, as well as useful links and articles.
If you still have a very specific problem that you don’t know how to handle, try to find a Maison de justice et du droit near your home. These “Houses of law” have three missions : inform the citizen, provide arbitration and mediation services and assist the victims. There you can receive free legal information from lawyers, law experts or associations. Some even have translators available, if you’re not comfortable speaking French! However this is not always the case, so be sure to check first, or come with someone fluent in the language. You can find the nearest Maison de justice et du droit here, by clicking on your department on the map.
These ressources should prove very helpful should you ever be in need of legal help. If you know of a website, an association or a book that also deals with French law, feel free to share your knowledge in the comments! We’ll be sure to update the article with your information.