The EU Settlement Scheme was introduced by the UK Government in March 2019. The scheme was created to allow EU, EEA, and Swiss citizens who were residents in the UK before the end of the EU Exit transition period to evidence their rights of residence under the terms of the Withdrawal Agreement. Status under the scheme will provide protection in UK law, the rights they previously had under EU law.
The deadline for applying to the scheme is 30 June 2021, by this date, all eligible applicants are expected to have applied for the scheme. Therefore, applicants now only have 3 months in which to prepare and submit their application.
It is strongly recommended that you submit your applications as soon as possible to secure your status before the end of the deadline. Failure to make an application by the deadline could result individuals considered to be unlawfully resident.
Who can apply:
Except in a few cases, you should apply if you are:
- An EU, EEA, and Swiss citizen; or
- Not an EU, EEA, or Swiss citizen but your family member is (or is an eligible person of Northern Ireland).
Irish citizens do not need to apply for status under the EUSS but can do if they want
How to apply for EUSS status
The scheme involves a free-of-charge online application process. Applicants will need to demonstrate:
- Proof of identity
- Declare any criminal convictions.
- Proof of UK residence - It is recommended that evidence of residence is provided at outset of application – a wide range of evidence will be accepted. Applicants can provide their National Insurance Number or use utility invoices, bank statements, council tax invoices, P60s, letters from employers to evidence time in the UK
The current processing time is between three to four weeks from date of submission.
Status under the EUSS
EU, EEA and Swiss nationals who apply to the scheme before 30 June 2021 will receive either Pre-Settled Status (if they have not been in the UK for five continuous years) or Settled Status if they are able to evidence that they meet the residence requirement.
If applying in the UK and successful, most applicants will not be issued with an actual visa. Instead, applicants will receive an email link that contains confirmation of their status in the UK which they can
Settled status provides the status holder with ‘Indefinite Leave to Remain’ in the UK and is granted to those that can evidence they have been resident in the UK for five years or more. This status will enable the holder to stay in the UK as long as they like. Holders can also spend up to 5 years in a row outside of the UK without losing their status.
Once they have held Settled status for a period of 12 months, the holder can choose to apply for British citizenship, if eligible.
Pre-settled status will be granted to individuals who can evidence that they have been continuously resident in the UK for a period less than 5 years. These individuals will be granted 5 years of time-limited leave and will be able to apply for Settled status once they can satisfy the continuous residence requirements.
Individuals with either Settled or Pre-Settled status will continue to be able to live, work, use the NHS, enroll in education, and access public funds (if eligible).
How Mazars can help
Our immigration team at Mazars are here to help you in the coming months if you are unsure about qualifying or applying under the EU Settlement Scheme.
Get in touch