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LEGAL AND AGENCY SERVICES PROVIDED BY FRENCH LAWYERS

The lawyers on this site are independent, French or dual qualified lawyers, with considerable experience in property law, particularly for foreign clients, whether companies or private individuals.

All our advice and assistance can be provided in English.

As well as providing legal advice and assistance across the full range of property matters, our lawyers also:

  • advise and assist in sales and purchases of property (including property for sale at Property Auctions)
  • act as agents for the purchase and sale of real estate, as authorised under the rules of professional conduct governing lawyers in France (this service includes property searches).

LEGAL ADVICE AND ASSISTANCE IN FRENCH PROPERTY MATTERS

Our lawyers provide the full range of legal services in property matters, giving advice in non-contentious matters and also representing clients in disputes involving property.

Please note that our lawyers are able to deal with cases throughout France. In cases where it is necessary to have a lawyer of a local bar on the record in court proceedings, our lawyers instruct appropriate local lawyers for procedural matters but retain complete control over the management of the case, draft the written arguments and argue the case at final hearing.

Areas of practice include :

  • commercial and residential property
  • retail, leisure and hotels,
  • lakes, forests
  • advising on appropriate mechanisms for sales, purchases and management of property for tax purposes
  • public law, including planning an expropriation
  • development and construction
  • property matters relating to family and divorce
  • forced sales and mortgage foreclosure
  • charges and freezing orders over real estate

BUYING A PROPERTY IN FRANCE AND PROPERTY SEARCHES

Recent changes in the professional conduct rules for French avocats allow members of the various bars in France French to act as agents for the purchase and sale of real estate, under certain conditions.

All our lawyers are authorised to act as an agent for real estate transactions, both for the purchase and sale of real estate.

In addition, they are active members of the AAMTI (Association des Avocats Mandataires en Transactions Immobilières - Association of Avocats Agents for Real Estate Transactions), which assists lawyers in providing these services within the appropriate legal framework ensuring compliance with the professional conduct rules governing avocats.

Buying a property on the open market

If you are buying a property in any part of France, we can help you throughout the legal process of French property purchase from the initial contract to completion.

Although you may be tempted to do as much as possible yourself, particularly in terms of negotiation, it is often advisable to obtain assistance at a very early stage in order to obtain the best deal in terms of price and also in order to spot any problems which may make the purchase inadvisable.

Buying a property at auction

Buying a French property at auction can be a way of acquiring a property cheaply but it does involve hidden expenses and it is therefore important to understand how the system works. Our lawyers are able to assist you through throughout the process: see the section Property Auctions.

  • We liaise with any French estate agent involved.
  • We assist you in negotiations, including negotiations on price with the seller.
  • Although final conveyances of land in France require the intervention of a Notary (notaire), our lawyers are usually substantially involved in reviewing and drafting all documents to be used in the process, from the initial agreement to sell, up to the final conveyance, particularly where the sale forms part of a wider commercial transaction or raises other issues.
  • We advise on how and when to apply for mortgage finance and how to protect yourself if you fail to obtain finance for your purchase.
  • We will provide you with written reports at all stages.

Property searches

Although there are many agency and other websites advertising French properties the sale, which can give you a good feel for the French property market, our lawyers are able to provide a property search service, acting as agents within the legal framework ensuring compliance with the professional conduct rules governing avocats.

We can provide details of service on request.

The service involves discussing your project with you, in terms of the sort property you are looking for, how you intend to use the property, your budget and the area of France you are interested in.

We are then able to look for suitable properties either through our own sources or through estate agents. We can then assist you during the negotiation process and throughout the process of purchase, down to final completion.

SELLING A PROPERTY IN FRANCE

In accordance with the professional conduct rules for French avocats, all our lawyers are authorised to act as agents for real estate transactions, both for the purchase and sale of real estate.

  • You can instruct us to sell your property. Our commission will also include all legal fees for accompanying you during the sale process (excluding the fees of the Notary) and will not be higher than those of an estate agent.
  • We will advise you regarding tax issues.
  • We will help you regarding all documentation you need to provide to the French Notary (surveys, proof of ownership, proof of identity…).
  • If you have to sell your property as a consequence of a divorce we do not have to be instructed by both parties in order to find buyers.
  • If you are selling an apartment we will help you to obtain all necessary authorisations from the assembly of the co-owners.
  • We will help you from the initial contract to completion and until you have received the net proceeds of sale.