When the UK leaves the European Union, the rights of EU citizens will be written into UK law.
It has been agreed with the European Commission that a new settled status scheme will be introduced under UK law for EU citizens and their family members, covered by the Withdrawal Agreement.
Those EU Nationals who already have five years of continuous residence in the UK at the point we leave the EU – on 29 March 2019 – will be eligible for settled status. Those who have been here for less than five years, will be able to stay until they have reached the five-year threshold.
With settled status, close family members will be free to join EU Nationals here in the UK after the UK has left the EU. This includes existing spouses, unmarried partners, children, dependent parents and grandparents, as well as children born or adopted outside of the UK after 29 March 2019.
Healthcare rights, pension and other benefit provisions will remain the same as they are today. This means that those who have paid into the UK system – and indeed UK nationals who have paid into the system of an EU Member State – can benefit from what has been put in and continue to benefit from existing co-ordination rules for future contributions.
In 2018, there will be a new online application system to enable EU nationals to apply for settled status. It will cost no more than applying for a passport. Those who already have a valid permanent resident document will be able to have their status converted to settled status free of charge.
The government are also working closely with Switzerland and EEA Member States to ensure their citizens in the UK also benefit from these arrangements.
If you need assistance with any UK Immigration matter or visa application, please contact our offices on 01793 836010.