Reassurance for EU Citizens in the UK
Following on from our article dated 20 October, the Government has released a technical document which provides EU nationals in the UK with more certainty about their future in the UK and how to apply for settled status.
The document states that EU nationals in the UK will have up to two years after the UK leaves the EU, to obtain settled status for themselves and their family members. Applications submitted via the more ‘streamlined process’ will not be refused on minor technicalities and caseworkers will be required to apply discretion where deemed appropriate. The document states:
“The criteria applied will be simple, transparent and strictly in accordance with the Withdrawal Agreement. In accordance with our obligations under the Withdrawal Agreement, EU citizens and their family members who can evidence to the UK authorities that they fall within the scope of the Withdrawal Agreement (i.e. are lawfully resident before the specified date) must be granted status by the UK authorities unless one of the grounds for refusal permitted by the Agreement is met. The UK authorities will have no discretion to refuse an application in other cases. We have already agreed with the EU that the conditions for EU citizens acquiring permanent residence/settled status under the Agreement will be as per the conditions set out in Article 16 of Directive 2004/38 (five years of continuous and lawful residence as a worker, self-employed person, student, self-sufficient person, or family member thereof).”
The new system will minimise the documentary evidence required, and EU citizens will not be required to provide fingerprints as part of the application process.
Obtaining settled status will be a condition for lawful residence in the UK and enable EU nationals to easily prove their unique status and rights, as guaranteed by the Agreement, to the UK authorities, employers, public service providers and others, in a convenient way in the future.
In terms of cost, it is anticipated that this would cost more than the cost of applying for a British passport. All round, it seems a positive outcome with the process being streamlined, discretion being applied and costs being kept low.
If you need any information regarding your immigration needs, please contact one of our team today on 020 3318579 or by email on email@example.com
Author: Amisha Jethwa