Key documents / procedures for WHV holders starting a job in France

Chapter 3: How do I apply for an “autorisation provisoire de travail” (“APT”)?

Published: 27-01-2018


How do I apply for an “autorisation provisoire de travail” (“APT”)?

This section applies to Russian WHV holders in France, as well as Australians who got their WHV before March 1, 2016, Japanese who got their WHV before June 9, 2016, and New Zealanders who got their WHV before March 10, 2017.

Documents to provide

In most cases, you must provide the original plus a copy of the following documents:

  • The form Cerfa n° 15186*02 “Demande d’autorisation de travail pour conclure un contrat de travail avec un salarié étranger résidant en France” (download it from this page).
  • Your signed work contract. It should be a term contract (“contrat à durée déterminée” or “CDD”) with an end date. This end date shouldn’t extend beyond the end date of your WHV. Note that a few WHV holders did get an “autorisation de travail” even though they had a permanent work contract (“contrat à durée déterminée” or “CDI”).
  • Your passport identification pages (pages with your pictures and your personal information).
  • The Working Holiday Visa affixed to a page in your passport.
  • A stamped self-addressed envelope (a second envelope is occasionally requested to send a copy of the APT to your employer).
  • ID pictures (original only, no copies)

Note: Documents needed to apply for an APT can be different from one “département” to the next. Contact your local DIRECCTE to confirm required documents and the number of copies to provide before you go.

Where to apply?

You must apply in person at your local DIRECCTE to the Service de la Main d’Oeuvre Etrangère (SMOE). Note that occasionally, you can skip the lineup if you use the “permis de séjour étudiant” booth (even though, technically, the WHV isn’t a student visa).


You won’t be charged a fee for an “autorisation provisoire de travail,” this document is issued free of charge.

And after?

The DIRECCTE can mail your APT or process it directly and issue it right away. Either way, after a thorough document check, you’ll get a document stamped by French authorities—this will be the “autorisation provisoire de travail” you need for the period of your contract.

You need to apply for a new APT every time you start a new work contract.

And what if I’m a temp with a staffing agency?

All staffing agencies provide a work contract you can use to apply for an APT.

Chapter 3 of 7


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Hi pvtistes,

I’m hoping to clarify the most updated information regarding the need to apply for APT.

I’m Australian and obtained the France WHV last month. I will be arriving in January 2022. I saw above that for Australians who obtained WHV after March 1, 2016 do not need to apply for an APT in order to obtain work. Is this correct?

Having said that, I understand I will still need to obtain a ‘numéro de securité sociale’, correct?

Merci d’avance!


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