EU Settlement Scheme – A Brief Guide
Posted: December 14, 2020 at 3:34 pm
Brexit has been a topic largely forgotten about as COVID-19 took over the world in 2020, however there are some very important things you need to know about living and working in the UK from January 2021.
If you’re confused about the EU Settlement Scheme, whether it applies to you, what the difference between Pre-Settled and Settled statuses is, or who is classed as a Frontier worker, then read on. We have picked out the important parts for you here. Check out the links at the bottom for more help and guidance.
THE EU SETTLEMENT SCHEME
If you’re an EU, EEA or Swiss citizen, you and your family can apply to the EU Settlement Scheme to continue living in the UK after 30 June 2021.
Application deadline is 30 June 2021.
You must have started living in the UK by 31 December 2020 to apply.
WHO CAN APPLY?
You must apply if:
- you’re an EU, EEA or Swiss citizen
- you’re not an EU, EEA or Swiss citizen, but your family member is (or is an eligible person of Northern Ireland)
This means you need to apply even if you:
- were born in the UK but are not a British citizen
- have a UK ‘permanent residence document’
- are a family member of an EU, EEA or Swiss citizen who does not need to apply – including if they’re from Ireland
- are an EU, EEA or Swiss citizen with a British citizen family member
(It is worth noting that if you have children, you must apply for them separately.)
WHO DOES NOT NEED TO APPLY?
You do not need to apply if you have:
- indefinite leave to enter the UK
- indefinite leave to remain in the UK
- Irish citizenship (including British and Irish ‘dual citizenship’)
- Or you are classed as a Frontier Worker – you must apply for a separate permit, more on this further below.
WHAT HAPPENS AFTER YOU APPLY?
If you apply to the EU Settlement Scheme successfully, you’ll be able to continue living and working in the UK after 30 June 2021.
You’ll be given either a settled status or a pre-settled status. The status you are given depends on how long you’ve been living in the UK when you apply.
You’ll usually get settled status if you have started living in the UK by 31 December 2020 and have lived in the UK for a continuous 5-year period.
You can stay in the UK as long as you like if you get settled status. You’ll also be able to apply for British citizenship if you’re eligible.
If you do not have 5 years’ continuous residence when you apply, you’ll usually be given a pre-settled status. You can stay in the UK for a further 5 years from the date you get pre-settled status and then apply to change this to settled status once you have 5 years’ continuous residence. You must do this before your pre-settled status expires.
NOTE – If you are going to reach 5 years’ continuous residence in the weeks or months before 30 June 2021, you can choose to hold off your application till nearer the 30th June 2021 deadline. This means that if your application is successful, you’ll get settled status without having to apply for pre-settled status first.
WHAT DO YOU NEED TO APPLY?
PROOF OF IDENTITY
If you’re an EU, EEA or Swiss citizen, you need a valid passport or valid national identity card. You also need to provide a digital photo of your face.
If you’re not an EU, EEA or Swiss citizen, you need to provide one of the following:
- a valid passport
- a valid biometric residence card
- a valid biometric residence permit
You also need to provide a digital photo of your face. If you do not already have a valid biometric residence card or permit, you will need to provide your fingerprints.
PROOF OF CONTINUOUS RESIDENCE
To be eligible for settled status, you need to have lived in the UK, the Channel Islands or the Isle of Man for at least 6 months in any 12-month period for 5 years in a row. You will be asked to provide proof of this when you apply.
The easiest way is to provide your National Insurance number to allow an automated check of your residence based on tax and certain benefit records.
If this check is successful, you will not need to provide any documents as proof of residence. You’ll only need to provide documents if you have been here for 5 years in a row but there is not enough data to confirm this.
The Home Office will tell you immediately after you apply if you need to provide any documents. You should submit photos or scans of your documents through the online application form, rather than sending them by post.
HOW TO APPLY
You can apply online using any device such as a computer, laptop, tablet, iphone or android phone. Click Here to start your application.
Scan your document and upload your photo using the ‘EU Exit: ID Document Check’ app available for IOS and Android
Post your documents and upload your photo using the online application (you can take this yourself)
Documents which must be sent by post are as follows:
- non-EU or EEA passport
- biometric residence permit
- non-biometric ID card
WHAT IS A FRONTIER WORKER?
A Frontier worker is what the Government calls someone who works in the UK but does not live here. Frontier workers do not need to apply to the EU Settlement Scheme but must instead apply for a Frontier Worker Permit. This permit allows you to enter the UK to work whilst living elsewhere.
WHO IS ELIGIBLE?
You may be eligible if all of the following apply:
- you’re from the EU, Switzerland, Norway, Iceland or Liechtenstein
- you live outside of the UK
- you have worked in the UK by 31 December 2020
- you have kept working in the UK at least once every 12 months since you started working here
If you’re a frontier worker, you’ll need a permit to enter the UK to work from 1 July 2021. You can use your passport or national identity card until then.
You must have worked in the UK by the 31st December 2020 to apply for this.
WHAT DO YOU NEED TO APPLY?
- Valid Passport or National Identity Card
- Additional Documents – which you will be told about when you apply. They may include an employment contract, or contract to work in the UK, Payslips or copies of invoices for work carried out in the UK.
The Home Office has more examples of the types of evidence you will be asked for.
HOW TO APPLY
You must apply online here
There are no fees to apply for the EU Settlement Scheme or the Frontier Worker Permit.
- Apply for the Eu Settlement Scheme Here
- Apply for Frontier Worker Permit Here
- Download the EU Exit Document Check App for IOS
- Download the EU Exit Document Check App for Android
- Apply for British Citizenship
- Check which countries are in the EU and EEA here
- GET HELP: Contact the EUSettlement Resolution Centre online.
- You can also get help over the phone during normal office hours.
- If you’re inside the UK: 0300 123 7379
- If you’re outside the UK: +44 (0)203 080 0010
If you would like to download a copy of this help guide please click below.
EU SETTLEMENT SCHEME