Brexit – for better or worse
It is daunting to think about the changes we face ahead in the near future. Our solicitors can provide you with regular updates on changes and additional advice and guidance. We will help you adapt and overcome any situation or issue the changes bring.
Important things to consider:
- The UK government made it clear that their first priority in negotiations with the EU is to secure the status of EU citizens living in the UK and nationals living in the EU. No EU citizen in the UK lawfully will have to leave at the point that we leave the EU.
- Security and identity checks are something that won’t change.
- There will undoubtedly be further changes to other areas of immigration law as a result of Brexit. It’s important to keep up to date and contact our solicitors for help when you need it.
Frequently Asked Questions
Most decisions have yet to be agreed. However, the UK has made a variety of proposals which includes;
- All EU residents who lawfully reside in the UK for at least five years will be able to apply for settled status and bring over spouses and children. This status will allow them to live, work, study and claim benefits just as they are now. They can also go on to apply for British Citizenship.
- The cut-off date for eligibility is not definite but will be before 29th March 2019.
- Those arriving after the cut-off point will be able to stay temporarily. There should be no expectation that they can have permanent residence.
- Family members of EU citizens living abroad can return and apply for settled status.
- EU nationals in the UK for less than five years at the specified date will be able to continue living and working in the UK.
- The Home Office will no longer require evidence that EU citizens who weren’t working held comprehensive sickness insurance.
Overall, any EU citizen already living and working in the UK will be able to carry on after Brexit. Currently there are discussions around allowing people from the EU to move and work in the UK during a ‘transition phase’ of up to three years but they’ll have to register.
One type of EEA application is for permanent residence. The system is set to completely change. There will be new processes, technology, rules and support for applicants. However, if you’ve gone through the process and you have a permanent residence document there will be a simple process to exchange it for a settled status.
The government/Home Office will be asking EU citizens to make an application to the Home Office for a new settled status. They’ll try to make the process as easy and user-friendly as possible and reduce the amount of evidence you’ll need to provide. Also, the Home Office will assist you with the application to ensure it’s exempt from any errors or in-completion. You’ll need to provide an identity document and recent photograph to confirm your identity but you will no longer need to give your fingerprint.
You will be able to apply for this status before the UK leaves the EU and the scheme will remain open for applications for a considerable period, likely to be two years after the UK leaves the EU so there will be adequate time for you to apply. Indefinite leave to remain (settlement) is not affected by the UK’s exit from the EU. Providing EU citizens have evidence of having previously been granted this status, they will not need to make any further applications.
After Brexit, the government announced that EU students applying to commence studies at English universities in Autumn 2017 will remain eligible for the same loans and grants as domestic students. This will apply for the entirety of the student’s course even if the UK leaves the EU during this time. Also, this is the same for EU students currently studying in the UK.
In the long term, it’s likely that EU students will have to pay the higher fee rates that currently apply to those from outside the EU. However, the pound’s fall in value, if sustained will continue to make studying in the UK more affordable for all international students. Students may incur higher international student fees and visa restrictions if they enrol after the UK leaves the EU.