With almost daily Home Office updates on Brexit and immigration law, even the most experienced London immigration solicitors can feel as if Brexit will never end. That’s perhaps not surprising given its over three years since the Brexit referendum. However, if immigration solicitors think that Brexit will never be out of the news or off the political agenda, spare a thought for EU nationals living in the UK, not knowing what their best Brexit options are.
Settled Status solicitors
If you want to talk about your Brexit
options or need Settled Status fast call our Brexit
team hotline on 0203 959 9123 or complete our online enquiry form
Your Brexit options
For EU citizens living in the UK the best Brexit
options can seem overwhelming and that is why it is tempting to do nothing. But what are your options if you are an EU citizen living in the UK?
• Do nothing – that may seem like the easiest option but it is not the best strategy. In both the short and long term doing nothing won't be in your best interests;
• Check your immigration status to see if you are already entitled to Permanent Residence or Leave to Remain in the UK. It can be worth asking a Brexit solicitor for advice on your immigration status because applications for Permanent Residence are dealt with under the Immigration (European Economic Area) Regulations 2016 rather than under UK Immigration Rules. If you are an EU citizen who came to the UK before the EEA Regulations 2006 came into force, you may have Indefinite Leave to Remain rather than a right to apply for Permanent Residence.
• Apply for pre-settled status or Settled Status under the EU Settlement Scheme. If you make an application for either pre-settled status or Settled Status under the EU Settlement Scheme then Home Office officials will consider your application using Immigration Rules and guidance contained in Appendix EU and Appendix EU (Family Permit). These two Appendixes state how EEA citizens, their family members, and the family member of qualifying British citizens, can apply for pre-settled or Settled Status under the Immigration Rules.
The options may make you think that you will decide what to do on another day but that isn’t necessarily in your best interests. In this blog we look at your best Brexit
strategy and options.
Pre-settled status and Settled Status under the EU Settlement Scheme
In essence, if you have been in the UK for five years and have been exercising treaty rights (and can prove it) then you are likely to get Settled Status under the EU Settlement Scheme. If you haven’t been living in the UK as an EU citizen for the last five years then you can apply for pre-settled status and convert to Settled Status once you have established five years residence in the UK.
The main advantage of applying for pre-settled status or Settled Status under the EU Settlement Scheme is that after freedom of movement for EU citizens in the UK has ended you won't be subject to the same Immigration
controls that will be placed on EU citizens who come to live and work in the UK after Brexit
The government has stated that after Brexit
and the end of free movement for EU citizens, the UK Immigration
policy and Immigration
Rules will be the same for EU citizens and non-EEA
nationals. That means EU citizens who want to live and work in the UK will be subject to the same stringent Immigration
controls that non-EEA
nationals experience, such as the need to apply for:
• Visit visas to come to the UK to see friends and family or for tourism;
• Work visas (Tier 2 (General) visa) to take up employment in the UK;
• Student visas to study at UK colleges or universities;
• Family visas to join spouses or partners in the UK.
Evidence of status
Whether you decide that the best option for you is to apply for Settled Status under the EU Settlement Scheme, Permanent Residence
or indefinite leave to remain
, each of these applications will provide you with formal evidence of your status as an EU citizen living and working in the UK and having pre-Brexit
If you have been settled in the UK for a long time then it can be galling to think that evidence of your status is required. However, Immigration
solicitors say that securing evidence of your EU status will make life easier for you after the end of freedom of movement.
The best Brexit option for you
With all the publicity about the EU Settlement Scheme and some of the scare stories in the press about:
• The difficulties encountered by people in applying for Settled Status;
• The delays in getting decisions from the Home Office on Settled Status applications;
• Home Office officials giving applicants pre-settled status rather than the expected Settled Status
It is easy to forget that you have alternative Brexit options, such as Permanent Residence or Indefinite Leave to Remain.
Settled Status solicitors
Although Settled Status solicitors are specialists in making applications under the EU Settlement Scheme and advising on the paperwork you need to best secure Settled Status, Immigration
solicitors will also look at your alternate options to find the best Brexit
solution and outcome for you and your family.
Although we have heard Boris Johnson say that he is ‘Brexit
ready’ on many occasions the question is ‘are you Brexit
ready?’ Many EU citizens assume that getting Brexit
ready is just a case of a quick application for Settled Status but it is worth asking the question of a Settled Status solicitor ‘is the Settled Status scheme the best option for me?’
If Settled Status is the best route for you then our same day Settled Status service is the fastest and most convenient way to make sure you are Brexit
ready and secure either pre-settled or Settled Status
How can OTS Solicitors help get you Brexit ready?
At OTS Solicitors our Brexit
team of specialist Settled Status solicitors and Immigration
lawyers will help clear up any questions or concerns that you may have about applying for Settled Status and what it means for you. We will also check that Settled Status is the best settlement route for you before we fast track any Settled Status application under our same day Settled Status service.
Call the Brexit team hotline on 0203 959 9123 or use our contact form.