The UK has now left the European Union and, going forward, depending on the outcome of negotiations with the EU, British people will no longer have the right to work and live across the 27 EU member states.
But what about EU citizens who had been living in the UK before Brexit? Read our top 10 questions about what Brexit means for your status in the UK, if you or your family member are EU citizens.
For the moment, yes. The Brexit transition period ends on 30 June 2021, and until then, EU (and EEA, and Swiss) citizens are still allowed to be living in, or moving to, the UK.
First off, check your status: if you already have Indefinite Leave to Enter or Indefinite Leave to Remain, or you are a British (or Irish) citizen then you don’t need to do anything to be allowed to stay here.
If you don’t already have that status, check to see if you’re eligible to apply for it now.
Otherwise, you should apply to the “EU Settlement Scheme.” You should apply for this if you:
Your previously-held EU rights (to live and work) in the UK will remain the same until June 2021. If you successfully apply to the EU Settlement Scheme, those rights will continue after June 2021, and you’ll be given either settled status or pre-settled status, depending on how long you’ve been in the UK.
You’ll need to fill out the application, give the Home Office proof of your ID, and proof of your residence in the UK. The easiest way to prove your residence will be to give the Home Office your national insurance number and let them check your tax or benefits records. You might be asked to provide some additional documentation too.
As long as you already started living in the UK by 31 December 2020, a successful application means you’ll get either settled, or pre-settled status.
No, you don’t get to choose which status you’re given: it depends on the length of time you’ve lived here. If you have spent at least half a year in the UK (or the Channel Islands or the Isle of Man) for five years in a row, you have ‘continuous residence’ and you will get settled status.
If you have less than five years continuous residence, you’ll get pre-settled status. Once you get pre-settled status you can stay in the UK for another five years. But once you reach the five year ‘continuous residence’ threshold you can apply for settled status instead.
Each of those status gives you the right to live and work in the UK; the right to use the NHS for free; the right to start or continue education here; access to public funds; and the right to travel in and out of the UK.
You can apply online or using the Home Office’s specifically designed app – note that the app only works on Android smart phones, or Apple smart phones that are iPhone 7 or more recent. If you don’t have the app, you can apply through the government website.
Nothing. Unlike most visa applications in the UK, you do not have to pay a fee to the Home Office to apply for the EU Settlement Scheme.
You can bring your family over to the UK before 31 December 2020 and they can apply for the EU Settlement Scheme, too. You’ll still be able to bring them over after that date if your relationship with them began before 31st December 2020 and that relationship still exists when you apply for them to join you. For example, your relationship with a child began on the date they were born and the relationship exists so long as you still have a parental relationship with them.
Jones Whyte’s experienced can make the application on your behalf, or book you in for a consultation to advise you on how to complete the application yourself. Contact us today on 0141 375 1222 or email@example.com.
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