News Updates

Government's proposals for EU citizens after UK leaves the EU

Friday 7th July 2017

The Government has published its proposals for protecting the rights of EU citizens in the UK on the expectation that there will be reciprocal protections for UK citizens living in other EU Member States. The proposals include:

  • A new settled status for EU citizens who are already in the UK or who arrive before a cut-off date (as yet unspecified).

  • However, it will not automatically be granted and all EU citizens – including those already holding a permanent residency card – will need to apply.

  • EU citizens continually resident in the UK for 5 years by the specified date will immediately be eligible to apply for settled status.

  • EU citizens arriving before the specified date, but who do not have the required 5 years of continuous residence, will be able to apply for temporary status in the meantime.

  • EU citizens in the UK prior to the specified date will have up to 2 years to obtain residence permission to remain. Those arriving after the specified date but before the UK’s exit may remain in the UK only until the expiry of the 2 year grace period, unless they have secured leave to remain in accordance with new, yet to be determined, rules.

  • Dependents of EU citizens who join a qualifying EU citizen before the UK exits the EU will also be able to apply for settled status after 5 years. Dependents arriving after the UK’s exit will be subject to immigration controls.

  • Those with settled status will be granted broadly the same rights and benefits as UK nationals and will also have the right to apply for British Citizenship.

  • The scheme will operate and be enforceable through the UK’s legal system, not the CJEU.

The full policy paper can be view online by clicking here

All information in this update is intended for general guidance only and is not intended to be comprehensive, or to provide legal advice.