EU Settlement Scheme and EEA Regulations 2016
All EU citizens are entitled to live and work in the UK without any immigration restrictions. They are also able to bring their non-EU dependants such as Spouses, parents, children and other close and extended relatives.
Due to upcoming Brexit, the Home Office introduced the EU Settlement Scheme according to which, all EU nationals and their dependants who live in the UK and would like to continue doing so after 30 June 2021, will need to apply for a Settled or Pre-Settled status. The deadline for applying is 30 June 2021.
If the UK leaves the EU without a deal, the applicant will need to demonstrate that he was living in the UK before Brexit. In this case the deadline for applying is 31 December 2020.
The applicant will be given Settled or Pre-settled status:
Settled status (or Indefinite Leave to Remain) is given to those who lived in the UK for a continuous 5-year period (known as ‘continuous residence’). Holder of such status can stay in the UK indefinitely without any immigration restrictions. Application for a British passport can be made after one year from the date the Settled status is granted.
Pre-settled status is given to those who does not have 5 years’ continuous residence at the date of the application. In order to be eligible for the Pre-settled status, the applicant should start living the UK by 31 December 2020 (or by the date the UK leaves the EU without a deal). The applicant can stay in the UK for a further 5 years from the date pre-settled status was granted.
Absences: holder of the pre-settled status can spend up to 2 years in a row outside the UK without losing the status. However, continuous residence in the UK should be maintained in order to qualify for the settled status in the future.
Close family members of EU nationals can join them in the UK before 31 December 2020 (or before 31 December 2025 for spouses and civil partners of Swiss citizens). They’ll need to apply to the EU Settlement Scheme once they’re here.
Please note that all EU nationals and their dependants can still use the EEA regulations 2016 to apply for Permanent residence or a Residence card before Brexit. These regulations have several advantages and disadvantages in comparison to the new EU Settlement Scheme. Our immigration specialists will advise you which route is the best for you and your dependants based of your personal circumstances.