Queen Mary and Brexit

EU Settlement Scheme

What is the EU Settlement Scheme?

The EU Settlement Scheme opened fully on 30 March 2019. In advance of the UK’s exit from the EU, the UK government has committed to protect the rights of EU citizens and their family members currently living in the UK. This includes the right to live here, work here and access public services such as healthcare and benefits.

To retain these rights after 31 December 2020, EU citizens must apply for UK immigration status under the EU Settlement Scheme. Further detail on the Settlement Scheme can be found on GOV.UK. Separate agreements have been made with EEA states and with Switzerland so that citizens of Iceland, Norway, Switzerland, and Lichtenstein and their eligible family members will also be able to participate in the scheme.

By taking part, you will be able to guarantee your status and rights so you can continue to live and work in the UK after the end of the planned implementation period on 31 December 2020. Successful applications to the EU Settlement Scheme will give you either:

  • Settled status, if you have been resident in the UK for five or more years. Or;
  • Pre-settled status, if you have been resident in the UK for fewer than five years.

If your application produces the incorrect status, you will have the opportunity to provide additional evidence to confirm you are eligible for settled status. This is likely to occur if you have spent time in the UK as a student prior to working. There will be no change to your current rights under EU law until the end of the planned implementation period on 31 December 2020.

Permanent Residence

The EU Settlement Scheme will replace permanent residence. For those EEA staff who already have permanent residence or indefinite leave to remain documentation, they will still need to make an application to the scheme to exchange it for settled status or apply for British Citizenship. Permanent residence will no longer be valid after 31 December 2020.

How much will the EU Settlement Scheme cost?

On 21 January 2019, the Prime Minster confirmed that the £65 fee for the EU Settlement Scheme will be waived for all EEA citizens. If you have already taken part in the scheme and paid the application fee, you will get a refund directly from the Home Office after 30 March. You do not need to do anything – the refund will be automatic and once it has been processed you will receive a confirmation email.

When do I need to apply by?

If the UK leaves the EU with a deal, the deadline for applications will be 30 June 2021. Under the terms of the Withdrawal Agreement, any Swiss and EEA nationals, and their eligible family members, who arrive in the UK from the date of Brexit until 31 December 2020 will still be eligible to apply for pre-settled status.

In the event of a no deal, the deadline for applications will be 31 December 2020. Any Swiss and EEA nationals, and their eligible family members, arriving after the UK exits the EU will need to apply for EU Temporary Leave to Remain should they wish to stay in the UK for longer than three months. This status will be valid for three years.

Further Information

If you have any problems with your application please contact: