Some of our students and supporters need to know about how the UK leaving the EU might affect them. The advice that follows is from Citizens’ Advice. This may affect you, even if you’ve lived in the UK for many years. You usually need to apply to stay in the UK if you're from:
- a country in the EU, EEA or Switzerland
- another country and you have a family member who is from the EU, EEA or Switzerland
The EEA includes EU countries and Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway.
You need to apply even if you:
- were born in the UK but are not a British citizen - you can check if you’re a British citizen if you’re not sure
- have a UK ‘permanent residence document’
- are a family member of an EU, EEA or Swiss citizen who does not need to apply - including if they’re from Ireland
- are an EU, EEA or Swiss citizen with a British citizen family member
If you’re a British citizen, you don’t need to apply to stay in the UK after Brexit. Your family members from outside the EU, EEA and Switzerland can apply to the EU Settlement Scheme if you either:
- are an EEA citizen who became a British citizen
- lived with them in another EU country while the UK was part of the EU
You don’t need to apply if you’re an Irish citizen, or have dual Irish/UK citizenship, or if you have been granted Indefinite Leave to Remain; or if you have Indefinite Leave to Enter.
Citizens’ Advice recommend that you apply for Settled Status now. If you’re a carer, the person you’re looking after may need to apply to the EU Settlement Scheme. After the UK leaves the EU you might be asked to prove that you have a right to do things like get a job or use the NHS. You’ll be able to do this by showing you have ‘pre-settled status’ or ‘settled status’ under the EU Settlement Scheme, or British citizenship.
You should apply by 31 December 2020 - your rights could change after that date.
Getting your status will prove your right to:
- stay in the UK for more than 3 months
- use the NHS
- claim the State Pension
- rent a home
If the UK leaves the EU without a deal, you’ll only be able to apply to the EU Settlement Scheme if you were already living in the UK before it leaves the EU.
If you arrive in the UK after 11pm on the day it leaves the EU, you can stay until 31 December 2020. If you want to stay longer, you’ll need to apply for European temporary leave to remain. The government will announce more details about this scheme if the UK leaves the EU without an agreement.
You can find out more information on the Citizens’ Advice website: https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/immigration/staying-in-the-uk-after-brexit/staying-in-the-uk-after-brexit/
And you can find out more and apply online through the Government’s website: https://www.gov.uk/settled-status-eu-citizens-families
Information is available in all European languages. This is the link to the Portuguese version: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/settled-status-for-eu-citizens-and-their-families-translations.pt
Where can I get help?
Citizens Advice will help you to find out what you need to do. There’s more information on their website: https://cawandsworth.org/our-projects/eu-project/ or you can call their advice line on 0300 330 1169 (Monday to Friday 10-4)