EU citizens permanence rights to be guaranteed before Brexit talks

Updated 22.07.2021

Prior to the long and arduous Brexit negotiations embarked upon by Teresa May, who was the British Prime Minister at the time, the question of reciprocal rights for European Union citizens in the UK and British citizens in Europe being addressed before the Brexit talks began in earnest. Sir Keir Starmer, then Labour's Shadow Secretary for Brexit, now the leader of the Labour Party, campaigned for legislation to protect the estimated three million EU citizens living in the UK.  Although the vast majority of EU citizens (those who have been in the UK for more than five years) will almost certainly be allowed to remain in the country, the “permanent residence” concept was an EU concept and has ceased now Brexit has taken place.

Now, nearly five years after the Brexit negotiations began, have ended, there are still large numbers of EU citizens who have not rationalised their position in order to remain living in the UK.  Many people incorrectly believe that the previous Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) status still applies, especially if the individual has lived in the UK for a number of years. This is not the case, however, it is important to retain evidence of ILR in order to support your application for settled status. 

For EU citizens who have lived in the UK for some time there are a number of documents that will be needed to be provided as evidence that you have held legal residence in the UK for at least the past six months, such documents must be dated and have your name on them.  Marriage to a British citizen does not exempt a person from applying for settled status. The documentation required is as follows:

  • a letter of employment - this must include evidence that the employer is genuine for example the Companies House number for the business.
  • employer pension scheme
  • your annual bank statement
  • a Council tax bill
  • appropriate documents from a university or college including enrolment details or an invoice for fees
  • a mortgage statement
  • evidence of residence in a care home
  • a P60 or P45 from an employer
  • official evidence of self employment·      

Home Office has stated that it will “work with you to confirm when you’ve been resident in the UK based on all the evidence available.”If you do not have sufficient evidence in your own name.  There is a degree of flexibility but this will not be indefinite.  

Settled status has to be applied for regardless of whether you have pre-settled status, it does not automatically convert on the expiry of the pre-settled status period.  Settled status must be applied for before the end of the pre-settled status period.

Giambrone’s immigration lawyers have extensive experience in assisting clients with a range of challenging applications relating to such issues as citizenship, visas and residency.  The application for settled status is extensive and we can guide and advise you on the required documentation, make sure your supporting evidence is correct, valid and applicable to the application for settled status, to ensure that an application is not rejected for an avoidable reason.  Our lawyers are multi-lingual so you can have the confidence that you will have complete understanding of every step of the process.

If you wish to know more about how to apply for settled status please click here