French timeshare

Are you planning on signing a French timeshare? Beware timesharing in France is different than in the other EU states. Find out why.

A specific legal identity

The French timeshare rules are quite different to what you may know from other European countries.

All French timeshare residences are organized as SCI (“Société Civile Immobilière”), a specific legal entity for the ownership and management of property. So a co-owner of a Timeshare property based in France is also an associate of the SCI and the Timeshare contracts are subject to the rules governing the SCIs.

So if you wish to sell your Timeshare, the French law provides the following options:

  • You may gather the unanimity of associates in the annual assembly of co-owners and they agree to your withdrawal as co-owner from the SCI. To initiate the procedure you will have to write to the management company (“syndicat de copropriétaires”) to signal your wish to add this point to the agenda of the assembly. Then, during the assembly, your request will be submitted to vote. Given that you need unanimity, this procedure is quite difficult to operate; the other co-owners may fear higher charges for them if you leave.
  • You may try to sell your ownership or donate it. Several Timeshare management companies offer help by providing advertisement in specialized catalogues, etc.
  • You may also apply to the courts in order to obtain a judicial decision allowing you to renounce your ownership (for example for financial or health reasons).
  • If you inherited the timeshare you have the option to apply for the rescission of the Timeshare contract within a period of 2 years after the transfer of ownership. Indeed, the death of an owner does not cancel automatically the existing contract. As the shares in a company, even an SCI, are considered an asset, they are automatically transferred to the heirs.