Queen Mary and Brexit

Malta and Brexit

Information for Staff travelling to the Malta campus after Brexit

1. Visa

Brexit Deal

In the event of a deal, UK nationals can continue to travel freely in the Schengen area, and therefore to Malta too until the end of 2020. What happens beyond 2020 is still unclear as details to that effect are subject to future negotiations.

Brexit – Short stays (Deal or no-deal)

The Council and the European Parliament have agreed that, following Brexit, UK citizens traveling to the Schengen area for a short stay (90 days in any 180 days) will be granted visa free travel. However, such exemption is granted on condition of reciprocity. Therefore, in these circumstances, UK faculty flying for less than three months will be granted a visa free travel.

No-Deal Brexit

The position today is that where visits exceed 3 months, British nationals may need to apply for a visa/residency permit.

2. Driving Licence

Currently, since the UK is an EU Member State, UK driving licences are valid in Malta. However, persons who hold a valid UK driving licence and who take up normal residence (more than 6 months) in Malta are entitled to have their licence exchanged for an equivalent Maltese licence.

This is done by filling in the DRV30 form and presenting the following documentation at the Passenger Operating Licensing Unit in Paola:

  • a recent coloured passport photo,
  • the UK driving licence,
  • a copy of Identity Card, and
  • a medical certificate (for persons over 70 years or category C/D driving licence).

After Brexit - The EU Coordination Department confirmed to us that the above right to exchange a UK Driving licence to a Maltese driving licence will remain in force for a period of 1 year which starts to run from the  date of the UK’s withdrawal from the EU. However, it will continue to apply only to those UK nationals who would be residing in Malta prior to the withdrawal date

Transport Malta have informed us that presently they have no information regarding the treatment and validity of UK driving licences in Malta post Brexit where such exchange is not made/possible. Thus, as of today, a no deal Brexit would mean that upon the UK’s exit from the EU, the rules pertaining to third country nationals would apply. Thus,  a holder of a non-EU driving licence may drive in Malta, for a period not exceeding twelve months from the date of his last entry into Malta. After which, such person should apply for a Maltese driving licence by sitting for a theory and practical exam.

Information for Staff on the Malta Campus

1. QMUL-Malta Employees

By virtue of their contribution towards Maltese National Insurance, both EU and non-EU employees are entitled to free access to state healthcare.  Thus, irrespective of the UK’s position with regard to Brexit, UK nationals working in Malta will be entitled to free access to all state healthcare in accordance with the entitlements determined by the Ministry for Energy and Health from time to time.

2. QMUL -UK employees seconded to Malta

A posted worker refers to a person who is sent by his/her employer to work in another country for a period of no longer than 24 months. In such a scenario, the posted workers will continue to pay National Insurance in the employer’s state (not Malta) and thus do not enjoy free access to public healthcare in Malta.

A distinction is to be made between EU and non-EU posted worker:

  1. non-EU nationals should purchase and maintain a private insurance policy for the duration of their stay;
  2. EU posted workers have the right to request the S1 form in their home country. By S1 form EU posted workers would be able to claim healthcare entitlement as an EU national living and/or working in an EU country other than one’s home country. In order to claim such entitlement, the EU posted worker must submit the S1 form to the Maltese Health Authority. Upon registration, one will be provided with a 'Certificate of Entitlement' which should be presented whenever accessing public health services.

It is to be noted, that in any case, EU citizens enjoy the 3-months grace period covered by the EHIC.

No-deal Brexit

In the event of a no-deal Brexit, UK nationals may apply for the RHA Card which provides them with free healthcare services in local public healthcare institutions on an in-patient and out-patient basis as well as other specialist services provided for Maltese nationals. However, RHA Entitlement Card holders will not be entitled to:

  • treatment abroad (including the UK)
  • the European Health Insurance Card
  • long-term care and other things and services provided for under the Social Security Act and other legislation.

Information for Queen Mary Students in Malta

1. EU Nationals

By virtue of the EHIC, EU citizens are entitled to free or reduced emergency necessary cost for medical treatment in public hospitals needed during temporary visits in European Economic Area (EEA) countries and Switzerland. Since the regular EHIC is valid for a temporary period of 3 months, students are to apply for the EHIC student version which provides the same access to public healthcare as a regular EHIC but which will remain valid for duration of one’s course abroad, provided that the student intends to return to the home Member State at the end. Students must communicate with the relevant state authority in their home Member State to follow the required procedure to attain such card.

2. UK Nationals and no-deal Brexit 

Students already studying in Malta before the UK leaves the EU will continue to enjoy the EHIC’s benefits as it shall be deemed to be valid for the duration of the course. On the other hand, students starting courses after the UK leaves the EU will not benefit from the EHIC. However, by virtue of the bilateral agreement between the Maltese and British governments, UK students who are ordinary residents in Malta may apply for the RHA Card which entitles them to free healthcare services in local public healthcare institutions on an in-patient and out-patient basis as well as other specialist services provided for Maltese nationals. However, as explained above, RHA Entitlement Card holders are not be entitled to:

  • treatment abroad (including the UK)
  • the European Health Insurance Card
  • long-term care and other things and services provided for under the Social Security Act and other legislation.

3. Non-EU Nationals

Non-EU nationals do not enjoy any form of entitlement to free public healthcare. Thus, students must ensure they have comprehensive  healthcare insurance  cover in place.

The information above reflects the position at law today. As highlighted by the Maltese Entitlement Unit, the position might change and be affected following UK’s exit from the EU, particularly with regard to UK citizens.