As many EU nationals might be aware, a pilot scheme is currently open for certain EU nationals already residing in the UK and their family members to apply for a new “settled” or “pre-settled” status, which will confirm their right to reside in the UK after Brexit (including any transitional period). Some are already eligible to apply under this scheme, including employees from selected NHS trusts, higher education institutions and health or social care organisations in the UK. For more information on the pilot scheme, see our previous blog on this topic.
In March 2019, the settlement scheme will be fully open to the public for all eligible applicants. Aside from the obvious family members of EU nationals, such as non-EU spouses, civil partners and their children, the scheme will also be open to ‘extended family members’. Eligible extended family members include unmarried partners of EU nationals and those related to an EU national, their spouse or civil partner as their:
- children, grandchildren or great grandchildren under 21 years old;
- dependent children over the age of 21;
- dependent parents, grandparents or great-grandparents; and
- dependent relatives holding a residence card to prove their relationship.
The benefit of applying under the settlement scheme is that once extended family members have been granted settled or pre-settled status (depending on the length of their residence in the UK), they will also benefit from being able to work in the UK, use the NHS, undertake study in the UK and access public funds (if eligible).
As stated above, the settlement scheme will be fully open to the public by March 2019 for EU nationals and their families. However, it should be noted that the scheme only applies to those already resident in the UK at the end of the intended transitional period. Those arriving after that date will be treated differently. Further, EU nationals and their family members (including extended family members) who have been resident in the UK for a period of 5 years or more and wish to obtain British citizenship should consider applying for permanent residence now under the current scheme.
Should you wish to discuss your immigration matters with any of our experienced advisors, please do not hesitate to contact us.
The information in this blog is for general information purposes only and does not purport to be comprehensive or to provide legal advice. Whilst every effort is made to ensure the information and law is current as of the date of publication it should be stressed that, due to the passage of time, this does not necessarily reflect the present legal position. Gherson accepts no responsibility for loss which may arise from accessing or reliance on information contained in this blog. For formal advice on the current law please don’t hesitate to contact Gherson. Legal advice is only provided pursuant to a written agreement, identified as such, and signed by the client and by or on behalf of Gherson.