Well, the answer is straight forward really: because It is illegal for you, if you live in France, to drive a UK Registered car.
Why: Because using a foreign registered car enables you to avoid parking and speeding tickets!! And the French authorities don’t like it (funny that). Now the legal delay for changing the plate is one month. But they (and we) are very lenient as everybody knows French administration works slowly (I am being diplomatic here!).
Between you and I, we only have seen one case when someone got fine (90 euro) by the gendarmes for driving a UK registration car in France. Obviously, it was easy for the gendarme to know he lived in France as he was insured with us (and had the insurance for more than 8 months). Difficult to justify living abroad when you have French insurance on your car!!
But more importantly is the fact that if you have a UK registration car insured with a French insurance company (hopefully us), you cannot drive back to the UK with it.
In the UK, you have a very clever system called the “automatic number plate recognition system”. This system will recognize your car as uninsured. This is because French insurance companies (and all other Europeans) are not on this system. So, you could get fined in the UK and yes, we have had quite a few customers telling us they got fined. And guess why? It’s illegal in the UK to drive a UK registered car with French insurance as you can’t renew your road tax without UK insurance. By the way, there is no road tax in France.
So, we can insure your UK car but we ask that you change your plate within 3 months (we are lenient).
To register your UK car in France, you needed to go and see the prefecture or sous-prefecture of your department and ask for the relevant forms. NOW, you need to do it all online! Via two web site: https://ants.gouv.fr/monespace/s-inscrire or https://franceconnect.gouv.fr/
In any case, you will need to change the headlights and pass a French MOT.
Finally, beware, as like most things in life, there is a fee for changing your registration paperwork. The more powerful and polluting the car is, the more expensive it will be.
Some garages offer this service for a fee so don’t hesitate!
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