EU Migrants Will Keep Benefits After Brexit
EU migrants, awaiting the trigger of Article 50 on Wednesday, received some welcome news yesterday when the Government announced they would be entitled to keep their child benefits to send to families back home.
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According to The Telegraph, a document circulated among ministers by the Department for Exiting the European Union has recommended that the approximately three million EU migrants located in the UK when the Prime Minister triggers Article 50, should keep their welfare rights. However, those arriving after Wednesday 29th March 2017 will not be allowed to retain benefits.
Ministers were warned that restricting benefit rights for EU nationals already residing in the UK leaves British citizens living in the EU exposed to tit-for-tat action, restricting their health and benefit rights.
Breaking Conservative government manifesto
The Tories' 2015 general election manifesto pledged to restrict tax credits and child benefits to EU migrants who have been in the country for less than four years. The announcement from the Department for Exiting the European Union risks breaking this pledge.
The manifesto also pledged that if an EU migrant’s child is not living in the UK: "then they should receive no child benefit or child tax credit, no matter how long they [the migrant] have worked in the UK and no matter how much tax they have paid."
One senior Conservative told The Sunday Times: "The plan we've got is clearly not compliant with that."
Further breaches of the manifesto will put additional pressure on Theresa May to call an early election so she can present her own plans for running the country in the new reality we find ourselves in post-23rd June 2016.
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