March 2019 - Latest information on the EU Settlement Scheme for EU citizens living in the UK
Three weeks until go live
The full opening of the EU Settlement Scheme will go ahead on 30 March 2019. Applications will be free, as announced by the Prime Minister on 21 January 2019.
People who have paid an application fee during the test phases will receive a refund after 30 March 2019.
If you are due a refund you do not need to do anything. We will automatically refund the fee to the card that was used to pay it. An email will be sent to the contact address provided in the application, confirming when the refund has been processed.
150,000 applications so far
Ahead of the full opening of the Scheme, we have been testing the application process and making some final changes. By the end of February 2019, the Home Office had received more than 150,000 applications during the test phases. In the latest public test phase, 75% of applicants whose case had been decided received their decision within three days and 80% of those who provided feedback found the online application easy to complete.
To apply to the EU Settlement Scheme, applicants will only need to prove their identity, demonstrate their UK residence, and declare any criminal convictions. Regardless of whether the UK leaves the EU with or without a deal, EU citizens will have until at least 31 December 2020 to apply.
Different ways to apply
EU citizens applying to the Scheme from 30 March 2019, will be able to send their passport or other identity documents by post if they do not wish to or cannot use the EU Exit ID Document Check App.
Face to face help is available at identity scanner locations where applicants can be helped to use the app, and via an Assisted Digital network for people who would like more support.
From 9 April 2019, EU citizens and certain family members will be able to apply to the Scheme from outside the UK, free of charge and based on their previous residence in the UK, without needing to travel here to make an online application.
Resident citizens of Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland and their family members will also be able to apply to the Scheme.
We will continue to keep you updated on the latest developments concerning the Scheme included detailed information on how to apply once the Scheme is fully live.
More information is available here.
January 2019 - Government have waived the fee for settled status application
On 21 January 2019, the Prime Minister announced that there will be no fee when the EU settlement scheme opens fully on 30 March 2019. Anyone who has applied already, or who applies and pays a fee during the test phases, will have their fee refunded by the government.
There is no application fee for the EU Settlement Scheme if you already have permanent residence. If you are eligible to apply for settled status and already have permanent residence since 23 June 2016, you can apply for reimbursement of fees via the University. You will be able to claim the equivalent of the cost of settled status.
Reimbursement Claim Form
January 2019 - Government outlines no deal arrangements for EU citizens
In the event of no deal, EU citizens will be able to enter the UK to visit, work or study after 29 March 2019. For stays longer than 3 months, European Temporary Leave to Remain will be required.
The Home Secretary set out on 28 January 2019 provisions for EU citizens coming to the UK after EU exit in the event of a no deal.
If Britain leaves the EU without agreeing a deal, the government will seek to end free movement as soon as possible and has introduced an Immigration Bill to achieve this. For a transitional period only, EEA citizens and their family members, including Swiss citizens, will still be able to come to the UK for visits, work or study and they will be able to enter the UK as they do now.
However, to stay longer than 3 months they will need to apply for permission and receive European Temporary Leave to Remain, which is valid for a further 3 years.
EU citizens wishing to stay for longer than 3 years will need to make a further application under the new skills-based future immigration system, which will begin from 2021.
This policy does not apply to those here before exit day, whose rights to live and work will be protected by the EU Settlement Scheme.
The provisions also confirm that if there is no deal:
- EU citizens arriving in the UK who wish to stay longer than 3 months and apply for European Temporary Leave to Remain will be subject to identity, criminality and security checks before being granted permission to stay for three years.
- Non-EU family members who wish to accompany an EU citizen under these arrangements will need to apply in advance for a family permit.
- EU citizens will be able to enter and leave the UK as they do now, using e-gates when travelling on a biometric passport.
- The initial 3 months’ leave to enter for EU citizens will be free of charge, but applications for European Temporary Leave to Remain will be paid for. Fees will be set out at a later date.
- Irish citizens will not need to apply for European Temporary Leave to Remain and will continue to have the right to enter and live in the UK under the Common Travel Area.
The Home Secretary has set out plans for a new single skills-based immigration system which will operate from 2021.