This article was published prior to the publication of the post-Brexit agreement between the UK and EU which covers the relationship between the UK and EU following the end of the implementation period (commonly referred to as the “transition period”) created by the European Union (Withdrawal Agreement) Act 2020, and should be read in that context. For up-to-date commentary and information on our services, please see our Beyond Brexit page.
The EU Settlement Scheme is still open for EU nationals and their family members to register their right to remain in the UK post the current Brexit Transition Period. Despite the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on migration, the deadline for applying has not changed, and all applications must be made by 30 June 2021.
EU nationals and their non-EU family members who arrive in the UK before 31 December 2020 must apply, regardless of whether or not they already have an EU residence permit document.
Updates to the EU Settlement Scheme
On 14 May 2020, updates to the Immigration Rules were set out in Parliament, including changes to the EU Settlement Scheme (EUSS).
These changes will widen access to the EUSS to victims of domestic abuse or violence. If a family member’s relationship with an EEA citizen breaks down permanently as a result of domestic violence or abuse, this, coupled with their own continuous residence in the UK, will be recognised as part of their application.
The changes also mean that a family member applying to the EUSS may be required to provide a certified English translation of a document as evidence of the relevant family relationship.
Family members of British or dual British-Irish citizens who are people of Northern Ireland will now also be able to apply for status under the Scheme.
Applications to the EU Settlement Scheme
The Home Office has announced that, as of 14 May 2020, it has received more than 3.5 million applications to the EUSS.
From the Home Office’s most recently published statistics, of the concluded outcomes, 58% of applicants were granted settled status, 41% were granted pre-settled status and 1% had other outcomes (such as refusal of status due to not meeting the criteria).
Home Office support is still in place for individuals currently making applications. The Settlement Resolution Centre telephone service has now resumed (after briefly being suspended as a result of the coronavirus pandemic). Individuals can also submit queries relating to the scheme via the Gov.uk online form.
For advice relating to the EU Settlement Scheme, including advice on eligibility or making an application, please contact a member of the Immigration Team.