In the latest Brexit development, an immigration document has revealed that the UK will make it easier for EU migrants to stay in the UK. This new suggestion comes as a shock after the government’s continuous promises to “take back control” of UK borders.
The policy paper, reported in The Sunday Times, suggests that the government wishes to remove existing requirements stating that applicants for permanent residency must show that they have comprehensive sickness insurance (in certain categories) and that any work relied upon is “genuine and effective”.
Theresa May’s new plans to enact “a presumption to grant rather than refuse” settled status in the UK will likely result in immigration application surges, particularly during the 20-month Brexit implementation period from 29 March 2019 to 31 December 2020.
However, the policy paper also suggests that there is no clear picture on the number of staff required to make these plans work. Estimates indicate that the number of bureaucrats needed to deal with the new policy will more than double from 700 to 1,500. Despite this, only 200 staff have so far been given security clearance to commence the task.
The government reported that “a further 260 staff are being recruited for a new customer resolution centre for settlement scheme customers”.
Additionally, the policy paper advocates for equal consideration between EU and non-EU migrants, arguing that “EU migrants will no longer be preferred to non-EU migrants in the UK” and that ministers will “incorporate EU migration into a single global immigration system, applying the current non-EU rules to the EU”.
While it is not yet clear exactly how a new visa system for EU migrants might work, the Home Office has said that it wishes to make the process for resident EU citizens to obtain settled status as simple as possible.
Should you require any assistance with your and/or your dependents’ applications, please do not hesitate to contact us.
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