14th November 2017

Settled Status For EU Citizens After Brexit

Settled Status For EU Citizens After Brexit


On 7th November 2017, the government has published a new document providing more detail on how the proposed new 'settled status' for EU citizens and their family members will work after the UK leaves the EU.

The new document sets out how EU citizens will be supported through an application process, which is streamlined and easy to use.

‘Settled status’ will be the equivalent of the current Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR). This will give EU citizens access to education, healthcare and benefits, as has been the case in the past. Those who have been here for less than 5 years will have the opportunity to complete their five-year period and then apply for ‘settled status’.

According to a technical document sent by the UK to the European Commission as part of the Brexit negotiations, the new system will be "streamlined, low-cost and user-friendly", with EU citizens. The government has also offered assurances that EU citizens who apply to stay in the UK "will not have their applications refused on minor technicalities".

EU nationals wishing to stay in the UK will also be given a right to appeal any rejection, with the rules for who can and cannot stay set to be spelled out in any final withdrawal agreement.

Key points from government document:

  • EU nationals will be given a 2 year grace period to apply for settled status after Britain leaves the EU.
  • The fee for applying for this status will not exceed the cost of a British passport (currently £72).
  • The process will ask applicants to submit a photograph. EU citizens will not be required to have complete sickness insurance or to provide fingerprints.
  • EU citizens will have a statutory right of appeal, in line with their current rights through the Free Movement Directive, if their application is unsuccessful.
  • Applicants will be required to declare any criminal convictions, and their details will be checked against UK security databases as part of the application process.

The Secretary of State for Exiting the EU, David Davis said the Government would support everyone wishing to stay to gain settled status through a new straightforward, streamlined system.

The Home Secretary, Amber Rudd said that applying for ‘settled status’ will be a simplified, low-cost, digital process and EU citizens are being consulted on its design to ensure it is user-friendly.

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