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Important information

Target audience

AudienceAsylum seekers, Statutory refugees, Beneficiaries of subsidiary protection, Beneficiaries of temporary protection, Stateless people, French citizens


Free of charge

Where is it?

Find your family with the international network "Restoring family links"

Updated on il y a un an

What is it?

Restoring Family Links (RFL) is an international network of the Red Cross, present in 191 countries, which helps families separated involuntarily during conflict, natural disaster or during the migration.

If you are living in France looking for a family member abroad, the RLF helps you:

  • Find your relatives;
  • Communicate with your relatives ;
  • Gather your family members;
  • Request official documents to enforce your rights.

Good to know: If you live abroad looking for a member of your family in France, contact directly the Red Cross, the Red Crescent or the delegation of the International Committee of the Red Cross in your place of residence.

Each request must meet 2 criteria:

* Eligibility: the cause of the lost connection must be involuntary and a family link with the concerned person must be established. This means that the person you are looking for is family member (not a friend), and you have been forced to separate.

* Feasibility : the conflict or disaster-affected area must be accessible by RFL teams.

Good to know: Your status (refugee, asylum seeker, French or foreign citizen, person in an irregular situation under French law, etc.) is not a criterion. The RLF helps all people who make a request corresponding to the 2 criteria.

However, in some situations, the RLF teams cannot act (see list of cases at the end of the sheet, in the "and after?" section).

Good to know: All RLF alternatives are listed here.

How to do it?

The first contact with the RLF allows you to know if your request meets the 2 criteria of eligibility and feasibility.

Good to know: If your request does not meet one of the 2 criteria, the RLF will redirect you to the competent organization which can best help you.

If you live in (or near) one of these cities, contact the RFL closest to you:

  • Paris : 112 rue Brancion – 75015 PARIS, 07 77 46 62 40, email ;
  • Sevran : 6 rue Paul Langevin - 93270 SEVRAN, 06 33 77 62 52, email ;
  • Aix-en-Provence : 32 Cours des Arts et Métiers - 13100 AIX-EN-PROVENCE, 07 88 39 23 81, email ;
  • Toulouse : 71 chemin des Capelles - 31300 TOULOUSE, 06 83 99 50 17, email ;
  • Brest : 4 rue du Conquet – 29200 BREST, 02 98 05 06 08, email ;
  • Nantes : 10 rue d'Athènes – 44300 NANTES, 06 17 15 52 34, email ;
  • Lyon : 16 bis rue Paul Cazeneuve - 69008 LYON, 04 28 29 66 84, email ;
  • Amiens : 36 Square Friant les 4 Chênes - 80000 AMIENS, 03 22 33 38 94 - 06 47 11 84 94, email ;
  • Lille : 10-12 Place Dampierre – 59800 LILLE, 06 08 52 25 55, email ;
  • Bordeaux : 130 Cours d'Alsace-et-Lorraine - 33000 BORDEAUX, 06 56 66 05 28, email ;
  • Montpellier : 9 rue Gaston Planté - 34790 GRABELS, mail;

Good to know : There are also mobile devices in some departments:
- Mobile device - DMSE: patrols on the camps at 59 and 62 from Tuesday to Thursday, 06 45 46 39 93,
- Mobile device - Morphee: patrols on the camps in North-East Paris on Saturdays, 06 72 78 07 27,

If you live in another region, contact the central RFL located in Montrouge :

French Red Cross - RLF service: 21 rue de la Vanne - 92120 MONTROUGE, 01 44 43 12 60 (Monday to Wednesday, from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. - 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. and Thursday from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m.), mail.

The map with the schedules and geographical areas of action of each RLF office is here.

If you respond to the 2 criteria of the RLF application, you must complete a form or make an appointment with the RLF office.

You must provide detailed and precise information on:

  • The identity of the person you are looking for: surname, first name, date of birth, photo...
  • The circumstances of the loss of contact: date, place...

Good to know: If you don't have a photo of the person you are looking for, the Red Cross and Red Crescent offers ' Trace the face ', a photo gallery of missing persons. You can also post a photo on this secure service.

Your request will be sent to the RLF services of the Red Cross, the Red Crescent or the delegation of the International Committee of the Red Cross in the concerned countries.

Good to know: Everything is done to guarantee the confidentiality of the data and only the information that you authorize to be transmitted will be shared with the people on site. Your address will not be communicated without your agreement.

As soon as the person is found, his contact details will be communicated to you, but only if the person agrees.

What happens next?

It is impossible to know in advance how long the processing of the application will take, because the ability to find a person depends on several factors. The research takes sometimes several months, but the RLF teams do their best to help you.

In certain situations, the RFL teams cannot act:

> Worrying disappearance (the person is not at home and has not been reachable for several days)

For research on French territory, contact the gendarmerie or the police (17).

> Search for people in France

- To find a relative or a biological parent (especially for children born under X), contact the Salvation Army via this link.

- To search for an asylum seeker, refugee or stateless person, contact the French Office for the Protection of Refugees and Stateless Persons (OFPRA). If the status was obtained a long time ago, the archive collections can be consulted on site (appointment required via If the research mission concerns a recent separation, write or call directly: Ofpra – Legal Affairs Division, General Affairs Section, 201 rue Carnot, 94 136 Fontenay-sous-Bois Cedex. Standard: 01 58 68 10 10.

- To find a refugee permanently settled in France, contact the French Office for Immigration and Integration (OFII) via this link.

> Search for prisoners of war or civilian internees

- To search for a victim, a prisoner of war and/or civilian internees, contact the International Committee of the Red Cross via this link.

- To find a person who has been interned in a prison establishment in France, contact the Ministry of Justice, Department of Prison Administration, Labor, Training and Employment Office, 8-10 rue of the Fox, 75004 PARIS.

- To find a person who has been detained in military internment camps in France, contact the Ministry of the Interior, Internal Security and Local Liberties (National Archives Mission, 11, rue Cambacérès, 75008 PARIS).

Good to know: All alternatives to RLF are listed here .

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