The Constitutional Council is comprised of nine members who are appointed for nine-year terms. The members are appointed by the President of the Republic and the presidents of each of the Houses of Parliament (National Assembly and Senate). Following the constitutional amendment of 23 July 2008, the appointment procedure involves the issue of an opinion, according to different procedures depending upon the appointing authority, from the Constitutional Law Committee of each House. The appointment of a candidate presented by the appointing authority may be blocked by a three-fifths majority vote.
One third of the Council is replaced every three years. The President of the Republic and the President of each of the appointing Houses each appoint one member to the Council every three years. Members may not be reappointed. However, if an individual is appointed to replace a member who has resigned or is unable to conclude their mandate, upon expiry of that appointment the substitute member may thereafter be appointed for a nine-year term, provided that their term in office as a substitute did not exceed three years.
Former Presidents of the Republic are members of the Constitutional Council as of right.
No prerequisite as to age or profession is required for membership of the Constitutional Council. Such office is however incompatible with membership of the Government or the Economic, Social and Environmental Council and with appointment as a Rights Spokesperson. It is also incompatible with the holding of any elected office. Its members are also subject to the same professional incompatibility requirements as Members of Parliament. A former President of the Republic, who is a member as of right, may not sit at the Council if they hold a position which is incompatible with their status as a member of the Council. Moreover, for the duration of their term in office, the members of the Council may not be appointed to public-sector employment or be granted promotion on the basis of selection if they are public officials.
Any member appointed may resign from office. They may also be removed from office in the event of incompatibility or permanent physical incapacity as ascertained by the Constitutional Council.
The members appointed shall take an oath before the President of the Republic.
Dominique LOTTIN taking oath before Emmanuel MACRON on 6 November 2017 © Présidence de la République - L. Blevennec