The UK Government has set out their latest position on the settled status scheme, as it will apply to EEA nationals and their family members.
The statement rehashes much of the information provided by Prime Minister Theresa May on 26 June 2017, about the new ‘settled status’ and the Secretary of State for the Home Department, Sajid Javid on 22 June 2018.
The statement reads as follows:
The Home Office has been working to develop a new scheme which allows resident EU citizens and their family members to obtain the UK immigration status they will need in order to remain here permanently.
The EU Settlement Scheme will be fully open by 30 March next year. EU citizens and their family members will have until 30 June 2021 to apply, in line with the draft Withdrawal Agreement.
Testing is already underway. Since August, EU citizens working for a small number of NHS trusts and universities in the north west of England, and students at those universities, have been able to apply for status under the scheme.
A new phase of testing will begin next month. It will involve many more organisations across the UK, including higher education institutions and organisations in the wider health and social care sector. Testing the system with real applicants helps the Home Office ensure the new system operates effectively when it opens fully.
You do not need to do anything for now. EU citizens eligible to apply in the latest test phase will receive information from their employer.
Further information about the scheme can be found on GOV.UK.
At the risk of being repetitive, it must be stressed that if you are an EEA national, or family member, residing in the UK, nothing has changed. After all, the UK is still a Member State of the EU.
It can be beneficial to wait until the new settled status scheme has been fully rolled out and apply for recognition under that scheme.
Nevertheless, we are aware of many EEA nationals, and their family members, who have already resided in the UK for a significant amount of time, and who have submitted an application for certification of their permanent residence status in order to better meet the requirements to naturalise as British citizens.
Of course, time will be a major factor as applications will need to be submitted soon.
The key is to and seek advice and plan the best way forward for you and your family. We can arrange a telephone consultation should you wish to discuss your immediate and longer term options.
Written by Carla Thomas – Managing Director at Thomas Chase immigration. Thomas Chase Immigration offer immigration help to individuals and families.
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