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EU Settlement Scheme

The UK Government’s EU Settlement Scheme allows EU citizens to continue to study, work and live in the UK post-Brexit. 

The scheme will be opened to all EU citizens from 30 March 2019. However from 21 January 2019, a pilot of the EU Settlement Scheme will be open to EU students living in the UK. The UK Government announced that it will waive the £65 application fee (£32.50 for children under 16) for pre-settled/settled status when the scheme is fully rolled out on 30 March 2019. Those who apply during the pilot phase of the scheme will receive a fee reimbursement directly from the Home Office in due course.

You will be eligible to apply for the scheme if you are either

  • an EU national with a valid passport or (not identity card)
  • a citizen of Norway, Lichtenstein, Iceland (no-EU EEA citizens)
  • a Swiss citizen 
  • an eligible family member of the above

and are resident in the UK or arrive by 31 December 2020. The scheme will not be available under this stage of testing to the family members of British citizens who are currently in the UK under EU law provisions. EU family members will be able to apply for the EU Settlement Scheme from 30 March 2019 when the scheme will be open to everyone.

On this page you will find more information about:


What is the EU Settlement Scheme?

The EU Settlement Scheme allows you to apply for either settled or pre-settled status.

Settled status:

You will be eligible to apply to stay in the UK indefinitely (known as settled status) if by 31 December 2020, you have been continually living in the UK for 5 years. If you have had absences from the UK during the 5 year period of up to 6 months, or one period of up to 12 months in specific circumstances including serious illness or study, you can still apply for the scheme.

Pre-settled status:

You will be eligible to apply for limited leave to remain in the UK (known as pre-settled status) if you arrive by 31 December 2020, but have not yet have been continuously living in the UK for 5 years. This enables you to stay until you have reached the 5-year threshold, after which time you will be eligible to apply for settled status.


How do I apply?

You can submit your application for settled or pre-settled status online and this application must be submitted from within the UK. During the pilot phase, the application fee is £65 and £32.50 for those under the age of 16. Please note the government has announced that it will waive the fee for those who apply from 30 March 2019 and those who apply during the pilot phase will be refunded the application fee in due course. 

If you already have a valid permanent residence or indefinite leave to remain document, you will be eligible to apply for settled status free of charge.

If you make a mistake on your EU settlement application or further information is required, the Home Office will contact you before making a decision on your application, so you can correct the error or provide further information.

If your application is successful, you will not receive a physical document unless you are a non-EEA family member and do not already have a biometric residence card. Instead, you’ll be able to get proof of your status through an online service. 

As part of the application you will be required to evidence the following:  

  • Your identity and nationality

You will be asked to upload a passport or valid national identity card digitally using an app on an Android phone or tablet (with OS 6.0 or above. You can use someone else's phone to do this.). Please note that this process will only work if your document has a biometric chip, if you do not, you will be able to send your documents by post instead.

  • Your residence in the UK  

If you are applying for settled status, you will need to show that you have been living in the UK for 5 continuous years. If you have a National Insurance number and worked in the UK, your application will automatically link to HMRC UK tax records to establish the duration of your residency. Please see the UK Home Office website for other types of acceptable evidence of residency.

If you are applying for pre-settled status, you can upload your student status letter to show that you are currently living in the UK.

  • Your photograph

As part of the online application, you will be asked to upload a recent digital photo of your face.

  • Criminal convictions

If applicable, you will be asked to provide any information about criminal convictions and these will be checked against UK crime databases.


EU Settlement Scheme briefing sessions for UCL students 

The UCL Student Immigration Advice Team will be running a series of EU Settlement Scheme Briefings over the next few weeks to guide and support you through the UK government’s new EU Settlement Scheme. This is the system for granting EU citizens with ‘pre-settled’ or ‘settled’ status in the UK that was drawn up following negotiations with the European Commission.

The briefing session will cover:

  • What is the EU Settlement Scheme?
  • How to apply
  • Family members of EU nationals
  • How to obtain further advice

The next session will take place at Logan Hall at UCL IOE on Monday 25th March – 3:00pm-5.30pm. 

Book your place now

 


FAQs

Does the EU Settlement Scheme apply to citizens of Norway, Ireland, Liechtenstein and Switzerland?

Yes, the scheme will also be open from 30 March 2019 to resident citizens of the other European Economic Area (EEA) countries (Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway) and of Switzerland, and their family members.

I plan to leave the UK for a short break and return to the UK after Brexit, what should I do?

If the UK leaves the EU with a deal, what you’ll need to enter the UK will not change until 2021.

If the UK leaves without a deal then the UK government has advised that ensuring a frictionless border from day one will be a priority. Therefore, EU citizens will continue to be able to enter the UK as now, using e-gates when travelling on a biometric passport.

What you need to show at the UK border will not change, even if the UK leaves the EU without a deal.

We do advise that if you are planning on leaving the UK before Brexit day and returning after this date then serious consideration should be given to making an application for pre-settled or settled status under the EU settlement scheme.

If you are travelling in the coming months and have not yet applied for pre/settled status, we recommend that you carry in your hand luggage a copy of your Statement of Student Status. This can be obtained from the Student Enquiries Centre or you can easily print and save a copy from your Portico. More information on obtaining a Statement of Student Status can be found here.

Can I apply for the EU Settlement Scheme from outside the EU?

The government has confirmed that applications under this scheme will be able to be made from outside the UK from the 9th April 2019.

Once I submit an application, how long does it take to get a decision?

You will be emailed a decision on your application within 3-5 working days.

Should I apply if I haven't yet been in the UK for 6 months?

You can apply under the EU Settlement scheme even if you have been in the UK for less than 6 months but only you arrived in the UK prior to the date the UK leave the European Union.

Can I leave the UK and return before December 2020 if I haven't applied for settled status?

We encourage you to apply under the EU settlement scheme to avoid any problems. The application is free after 29 March 2019 and is quite straightforward and a quick process.

Is it a problem that I have dual nationality?

You can apply under the EU Settlement scheme irrespective of how many other nationalities you have as long as you apply using your EU/EEA nationality.

I have previously studied a year abroad - how do I prove I have been resident in the UK?

You will able to make an application under the EU Settlement Scheme from outside the UK on or after 30 March 2019. If you have been away from the UK for less than 6 months you will be able to apply for pre-settled/settled status. If you have been away 6-12 months, you will still be able to apply under as long as you can prove that this was due to your study or work year abroad. You should be able to prove this with a Statement of Student Status from both UCL and your host institution. Information on obtaining a UCL Statement of Student Status can be found here.

If you have been outside the UK for more than 12 months, you will not be eligible to apply for pre settled/settled status. However, you will be able to re-enter the UK for 3 months and during this period, you will then need to apply for ‘European Temporary Leave to Remain’, which will be valid for up to 3 years.

I am an Erasmus student and I am currently studying abroad, what should I do?

You will able to make an application under the EU Settlement Scheme from outside the UK on or after 30 March 2019. If you have been away from the UK for less than 6 months you will be able to apply for pre-settled/settled status. If you have been away 6-12 months, you will still be able to apply under as long as you can prove that this was due to your study or work year abroad. You should be able to prove this with a Statement of Student Status from both UCL and your host institution. Information on obtaining a UCL Statement of Student Status can be found here.

Under the list of documents, how many different types of documents should I submit?

‘Preferred evidence’ is that which covers you for a period longer than 6 months, which means one document for each year of residence will be sufficient from this list.

‘Alternative evidence’ is that which covers you for less than 6 months, this means you will need to submit more of them to evidence that you meet the residence requirement.

A list of ‘preferred’ and ‘alternative’ documents can be found at pages 70-73 of this document.

Should I apply for the EU Settlement Scheme even if I do not plan on staying in the UK after the transition period?

We encourage you to apply under the EU settlement scheme to avoid any problems. The application is free after 29 March 2019 and is quite straightforward and a quick process.

If I have applied and obtained pre-settled status, do I have to apply again for settled status?

Yes, you will need to apply for settled status once you reach the 5 year residency mark.

If I apply for the EU Settlement Scheme, will I lose my status in my home country?

No, you will not lose any other residency status that you have for another country.

My passport expires in less than 6 months, can I still apply for the EU Settlement Scheme?

Yes, your passport only needs to be valid at the time of application. ‘Valid’ here means that the document is genuine and has not expired or been cancelled or invalidated.

Do I have to use my own Android device to apply for the scheme?

You may use the mobile app on any Android device. All personal information will be deleted from the mobile app once it has been closed, ready for the next person to use.

Does 'settled status' mean the same thing as 'Permanent Residence'?

‘Settled status’ is similar to ‘Permanent Residence’. You can stay in the UK as long as you like if you get settled status. You’ll usually be able to apply for citizenship 12 months after you’ve got settled status.

Do I need Comprehensive Sickness Insurance (CSI) to apply for the EU Settlement Scheme?

There is no requirement under the scheme to provide evidence that you have or have had comprehensive sickness insurance.

Do I need to apply if I am married to a British citizen?

In this situation you will still need to make an application to regularise your status in the UK post Brexit but you will have a choice to make an application under the EU Settlement Scheme or under the UK Immigration rules. We advise that you contact the UCL Student Immigration Advice Team to discuss the requirements and benefits of each route. You can get in touch with the Advice Team through their contact form. 


Further Information

UK Council for International Student Affairs (UKCISA): Brexit: EU Settlement Scheme

Home Office: Settled and pre-settled status for EU citizens and their families

Free Movement blog: How to apply for “settled status” for EU citizens

British Council: Brexit FAQs for EU students