Due to its colonial past, and the status of its capital as a global city, the United Kingdom is full of people whose ancestors came from far-away places. However, even in modern times, many people have been choosing to try their luck on the British Isles.
Not a small percentage of those came from European countries, especially Ireland, Poland, and Romania. In 2019, around 3.6 million EU-born migrants were living in the UK.
However, as a consequence of Brexit, many foreign-born nationals started to fear that they might have to leave the UK, even if they have been working there for quite a number of years. They may be wondering whether their income would be enough to guarantee them a status of a permanent resident, or they are worried that their chances will decrease due to public order offences they committed in the past. When it comes to the latter, click for more assistance here.
Now, if you’re wondering what it takes to be able to legally remain in the UK after Brexit, in this article, we will try to answer the most common questions.
Can I become a permanent resident in the UK, even if I’m not from the UK?
Yes, but only if you fulfill all of the following conditions:
- You have been living legally in a European Economic Area (EEA) country or Switzerland for at least five years.
- You are working or self-employed.
- You have comprehensive sickness insurance.
- Your income has been above the UK Government’s relevant threshold for the past six months.
- You have comprehensive health insurance.
- You can provide proof that you have the funds to support yourself without having to rely on public services.
- You can show that you have the necessary knowledge of the English language and sufficient knowledge of life in the United Kingdom.
- You have not received any form of help from public funds during your time of residence.
How can I apply?
In order to apply, you need to fill out an application form. You will need to include a copy of your passport and proof of residency in a member state of the EEA or Switzerland. The application will be considered by a panel of officials who will then decide whether or not you qualify for permanent residence as an EU national. If you are successful, you will be granted a permanent residence document – known as a “PR document” – which must be renewed each year.
How long does it take?
The processing time is up to six months but may take longer if you are submitting a large amount of evidence to support your application.
When will I be able to apply?
The application is now open, and the deadline for applying is 30 June 2021. However, keep in mind that you must have started living in the UK by 31 December 2021 for your application to be valid.
Do I have to apply or do anything else?
No, you do not have to apply for the status, but if you want to live in the UK after 30 June 2021, you will have to do so. If you do not apply by this date, you will have to leave the country.
What are my chances of being granted permission to stay?
It is unclear how many EU citizens will be successful in obtaining settled status after Brexit. However, the Home Office has said it is aiming for a “balance of probabilities” that EU nationals will qualify.
How much will it cost?
The application process will be free of charge. As a result, you will not have to pay any fees, but you will need to pay to obtain the identity document once you have been granted your settled status.
What if I do not apply?
If you do not apply for the status, you will be considered to have no status in the UK after 30 June 2021. This means you will have to leave the country, and you will not be entitled to work or study in the UK.
What happens if my application is rejected?
If your application is rejected, you will lose your right to remain in the UK. You will then have two choices: to leave the country voluntarily or to make a fresh application for further right to remain. In both cases, you will have to show that you have a strong connection to the UK.
What if I make a fresh application?
If you make a fresh application, you will have to demonstrate that you have sufficient funds to support yourself in the UK, that you have comprehensive health insurance, and that you have the necessary knowledge of the English language and life in the United Kingdom. You may also need to provide evidence that you are working, self-employed, or studying in the UK.
The Bottom Line
The consequences of Brexit will be long-term, and many people, the British included, are confused by the ongoing procedures and possible results. Unsurprisingly, the situation has profound effects on life in Great Britain, including its social, economic, and educational aspects.
Still, there are many people from the EU who want to continue living in the UK – as such, obtaining the settled status is the most important thing to do in this case. If you’re one of them and you want to apply, don’t wait. Now you know what you can expect, so the process should be easier. Good luck!