On 26 June 2017, the Home Office published a paper setting out their offer for EU citizens in the UK and UK nationals in the EU.
The main points affecting immigration are:
- After the UK leave the EU, the government will create new rights in UK law of qualifying EU citizens residents here before the exit. Those rights will be enforceable in the UK legal system and will provide legal guarantees for these EU citizen
- To qualify for settled status the EU citizen must have been resident in the UK before a specified date and must have completed a period of five years’ continuous residence in the UK before they apply for settled status, at which point they must still be resident
- Those EU citizens who arrived and became resident before the specified date but who have not accrued five years’ continuous residence at the time of the UK’s exit will be able to apply for temporary status in order to remain resident in the UK until they have accumulated five years, after which they will be eligible to apply for settled status
- Those EU citizens who arrived after the specified date will be allowed to remain in the UK for at least a temporary period and may become eligible to settle permanently, depending on their circumstances – but this group should have no expectation of guaranteed settled status
- The ‘specified date’ will be no earlier than the 29 March 2017, the date the formal Article 50 process for exiting the EU was triggered, and no later than the date of the UK’s withdrawal from the EU
- Those EU citizens who arrived after the specified date will be allowed to remain in the UK for at least a temporary period and may become eligible to settle permanently, depending on their circumstances, but they will have no expectation of guaranteed settled status
- EU citizens with settled status will continue to have access to UK benefits on the same basis as a comparable UK national under domestic law
If you have any questions on this matter, please contact our Immigration team here.