Over the past three to four months, the focus has (understandably) been on COVID-19 and the impact it has had on people and businesses. I don't want to be that person who is the first to mention the 'B-word' but I fear I must. This is because Brexit is still happening – the deadline for EU settlement application is not that far away.
Here are some important facts to bear in mind when you look at the EU Settled Status Scheme:
- The scheme is open to any EU national who starts their residence, in the UK, before 31 December 2020.
- However, the deadline to apply under the Scheme is 30 June 2021.
- EU nationals who fail to apply by 30 June 2021 will not be allowed to reside in the United Kingdom and will be considered illegal migrants (regardless of how long they have lived in the United Kingdom).
- If you have already been issued Permanent Residence under EU law then you still need to apply under the EU Settled Scheme as Permanent Residence is no longer recognised. If you have been issued Indefinite Leave to Remain then you do not need to apply.
- Family members of EU nationals can also apply under the Scheme.
- If you are the family member of an EU national and are overseas then the deadline for you to join your EU national sponsor would be 31 December 2020. If your partner is Swiss and you were married (or you entered a Civil Partnership) after 31 December 2020 then this deadline becomes 31 December 2025. If you are not living in the UK by the 31 December 2020 deadline then you can still apply if you met key criteria, namely:
- Your UK resident family member has either settled or pre-settled status;
- The relationship began before 31 December 2020; and
- You remain a close family member, for example, a spouse, civil partner, unmarried partner, a dependent child or grandchild, or a dependent parent or grandparent.
COVID-19 has made things tough for everyone. Movements have been restricted and the economy has slowed down. However, you may still require legal advice to navigate the EU Settled Status Scheme. That is why we have created a bespoke fixed fee offering on settled status applications.
If you are not resident in the United Kingdom before 31 December 2020 then you cannot rely on the scheme!