Why your address in France may change

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The slowness of responses from emergency services, home delivery delays and problems with installing fiber optic links mean that some addresses have to be changed to be more precise.

Many communes, mostly rural, do not have street names or numbers and the houses share an address – often a hamlet name or “place said“- which means that the mail is only delivered if the factor learned who lives where.

More seriously, it can lead to significant delays in the arrival of emergency services, missed home parcel deliveries and a refusal to provide broadband.

Mayors are faced with increasing requests for precise addresses using a Local Address Database and recorded in the National Address Database (BAN).

Véronique Picard, technical advisor to the Association of Mayors of France, said services such as the post office, garbage collection, district nurses, utility companies and tax offices were struggling to function properly. .

“Emergency services can waste up to 15 minutes on a call when looking for an address, especially in hamlets without a name or street number.

“Fiber optic network installers also need precise addresses for buildings and to tailor service to occupants.

“It also makes it much easier for delivery companies to find the right address and improves GPS tracking. “

Today, only municipalities with more than 2,000 inhabitants have to create an address list with street names and numbers, but Ms Picard said more small municipalities are doing it and it may become mandatory.

“We have more mayors calling for advice and we are asking for help from the government.

“New brands are expensive and their implementation is complex. A small town could easily have at least 12 hamlets requiring new addresses, and several roads.

“We believe the government is increasingly supportive of creating an improved address system across the country.”

Your municipality must inform you of any planned change of address and of the measures you may need to take.

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