The UK will leave the European Union (EU) on 29 March 2019. This has left many EU citizens residing in the UK in a state of limbo with regard to whether they will be permitted to remain after Brexit. The Home Secretary has announced that an online scheme will be launched in autumn 2018, which will require all EU Nationals who live in the UK to submit applications to the Home Office if they wish to stay in the UK.
EU citizens and family members who have been in the UK for 5 years by the end of 2020 will be able to apply for “settled status”, which means they will be able to reside and work in the UK indefinitely. Those who arrive in the UK by 31 December 2020 but have not acquired 5 years’ residency at that time, will be able to apply for permission to stay in the UK until they have been resident for 5 years and apply for settlement when they reach this point.
Applicants will be asked to provide biographical information, declare whether they have any criminal records and upload a photograph. This information will be cross-referenced with the existing data that the various government agencies hold on them to verify their identity.
Applications will cost £65.00 for adults and £32.50 for children but will be free to those EU citizens who already have indefinite Leave to Remain in the UK. Nationals of Switzerland, Iceland, Lichtenstein and Norway will also be covered under this scheme.
EU Nationals that have naturalised as British citizens will not be required to take any action.