There is no longer any free movement of European Nationals and their family members to the UK following the end of the Brexit ‘Implementation period’ on 31st December 2020.
Anyone who is a national of the EU, European Economic Area or Switzerland and was living in the UK prior to 31st December 2020 must now take steps to apply for pre-settled or settled status before 30th June 2021 to continue living and working in the UK after this date.
This is known as an application under the EU Settlement Scheme (EUSS).
You do not need to make any application if you have indefinite leave to remain or you hold British or Irish citizenship.
If you have not lived in the UK for a continuous period of five years prior to the 31st December 2020, you will be given ‘pre-settled’ status when you make an application under the EUSS scheme. This will give you permission for five years from the date of the pre-settled status grant letter to live and work in the UK.
Once you have completed five years of continuous residence you should then make an application for settled status. Your five year period commences from the date that you entered the UK and you do necessarily need to have held pre-settled status for a period of five years to apply for settled status.
In some circumstances if you were an EU national living in the UK before 31st December 2020 but were not here on that date you may also be eligible for pre-settled status.
If you have lived in the UK for a continuous five year period you may be eligible for settled status which gives you the right to live and stay in the UK on a permanent basis without any time limit.
In order to establish that you have lived in the UK for a continuous period you would normally need to show that you have not been absent from the UK for more than six months in any 12 months.
You may also be eligible to apply for British citizenship, usually after a having held settled status for one year.
Your family members can join you in the UK, if you’re an EU or EEA or Swiss citizen if you can establish the following:
The procedure for applying for your family members to join you will depend on whether you family member is from the EU, EEA or Switzerland or not.
For family members from the EU, EEA or Switzerland they can apply under the EU Settlement scheme from outside the UK provided that they have a valid biometric type ID card or passport.
If your family member is from a country outside the EU, EEA or Switzerland they can only apply under the EU Settlement Scheme if they hold a residence card, permanent residence card or a derivative residence card.
If your family members do not have any of these documents they can apply for an EU Settlement Scheme family permit which will be granted for six months for them to come to the UK.
On arrival in the UK the family must then make an application under the EU Settlement Scheme within three months.
Only close family members may be eligible to join a citizen from the EU, EEA or Switzerland in the UK under the EUSS and include:
You can make an application for pre-settled status online usually with evidence of your current status in the UK and your passport. Further documentation including evidence of your employment or residence in the UK can be requested and if your case is particular complex or if you are unsure whether you meet the EUSS requirements our immigration team can assist and guide you through the process.
The EUSS Regulations can be difficult to navigate and can be confusing for individuals as each case is different and should be taken on its own individual facts and circumstances. Applicants must meet the requirements within the regulations and may also need to support this with documentary evidence.
Examples of documents that will need to be submitted are:
Duncan Lewis has extensive experience in assisting both EU nationals and their family members in making applications under the EUSS Regulations. We ensure all applications are vetted very carefully prior to submission.
EUSS applications will attract a full right of appeal on refusal to the independent, First Tier Tribunal (Immigration & Asylum Chamber).
We understand the anxiety and frustration caused on receiving a rejection of your application. We can be on hand to assist at this crucial time and have a wealth of experience in assisting with immigration appeals, from drafting grounds of appeal to preparing for a full hearing with representation.
For a free initial consultation over the telephone with one of our expert UK immigration lawyers, call us today on +44 (0)203 114 1198 or e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org.