EU Settlement Scheme Settled StatusDr Shafiq
Did you know EU citizens and their families can continue to live in the UK even after Brexit? Thanks to the EU Settlement Scheme settled status. The UK settlement scheme has two types of status: Settled and Pre-settled.
If you are an EU citizen living in the UK after Brexit, it’s imperative that you check your Settlement Status. That’s because you are subject to some benefits, along with some responsibilities and duties. So, let’s dive deeper and learn about the Settlement Scheme in detail.
Importance of Settled and Pre-Settled Status
The Settled and Pre-Settled Statuses are two immigration statuses under the EU Settlement Scheme in the UK for EU citizens and their families living inside the UK before the transition period of Brexit ended on 31st December 2020.
Rights and benefits of having Settled Status and Pre-Settled Status
Settled status gives EU citizens and their family members the right to live, work, study, and access healthcare in the UK indefinitely. You can apply for British citizenship in 12 months after getting Settled status.
Pre-settled status gives EU citizens and their family members the right to live, study, work, and access healthcare in the UK for five years. You can apply for switching to Settled status after five years.
The Impact of These Statuses on Non-EU Family Members
The non-EU family members of EU citizens having settled status can also apply for settled status.
Similarly, the non-EU family members of EU citizens with Pre-Settled status can also apply for Pre-settled Status. After five years, they can also appeal for switching to settled status.
UK Immigration Status and Its Implications
Settled status and pre-settled status both are a form of indefinite leave to remain in the United Kingdom. It implies that you have the right to live, study, work, and enjoy all the benefits, but you are not a British citizen and do not have voting rights. You can apply for a British passport after 12 months of getting settled status. But if you have a Pre-settled Status, you will need to apply for a Settled Status to be eligible for a British passport.
Eligibility Criteria for Applying for Settled Status
To be eligible for Settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme in the UK, you must meet the following criteria:
- Be an EU citizen or a family member of an EU citizen.
- Was living in the United Kingdom by 31st December 2020.
- Must be living in the UK for at least five years.
- Cannot be sentenced to prison for more than 12 months in the UK.
You will need the following documents to apply for Settled Status:
- A valid EU passport.
- Proof of residence in the UK, such as utility bills, council tax, or bank statements.
- Proof of continuous residence in the UK, such as a job contract, student records, or payslips.
We already know that there are two different statuses under the EU Settlement Scheme: Settled and Pre-settled status. The main difference between the two is the length of time it allows EU citizens to stay in the UK.
With Settled status, EU citizens and their family members can stay in the UK indefinitely. A Pre-settled status allows them to stay in the UK for up to five years. However, they can eventually apply for a Settled status.
How to Apply for Settled Status
Applying for Settled status can be done in a few simple steps to make the process efficient and fast. Here’s the step-by-step application process:
- Firstly, you must ensure you meet the eligibility criteria for Settled Status. So, check your eligibility using the EU Settlement Scheme online checker.
- If you are eligible, you must gather all the necessary documents to apply for the status.
- Now, you have to fill out the application form and submit all the supporting documents on the EU Settlement Scheme website.
- Finally, pay the application fee of £65 and track your application online from the EU Settlement website.
You will need several supporting documents in the application process, including:
- A valid passport from your home country.
- Proof of your residence in the UK
- Evidence of your continuous residence in the UK
You can check EU Settlement Status online from the EU Settlement Scheme website. All you have to do is create an account on the website and log in to check your status. If you apply online, you will typically receive a decision within 6 weeks. But it can take up to 12 weeks if you do it by post.
What is Pre-Settled Status?
We know that EU Settlement Scheme comes with two statuses, and Pre-settled status is one of them. It allows EU citizens and their family members to live, work, and study in the UK for five years. EU citizens who were living in the UK before the end of the Brexit transition period on 31 December 2020 can apply for this status. In five years, you can apply to switch to Settled Status.
Here are some of the benefits of EU Settlement Scheme Pre-settled status:
- The right to live, study, work, and access healthcare in the UK for five years.
- It allows EU citizens to bring their family members to the UK.
- Allows you to travel in and out of the UK without any restrictions.
There are several limitations as well, such as:
- It’s not a permanent immigration status.
- You cannot apply for a British passport with it.
- You may have to pay an immigration health surcharge if you are not already exempt.
- You cannot spend outside of the UK more than 6 months in any 12 months.
To Pre-settled status check, you will have to visit the EU Settlement Scheme website. There, you have to create an account using your name, date of birth, passport number, and UKVI reference number. EU Settlement Scheme also has a helpline number (0300 790 6268), which you can call if you have any queries.
Transitioning from Pre-Settled Status to Settled Status
When and how to switch from Pre-Settled Status to Settled Status
You can shift to Settled status from Pre-settled status once you complete living in the UK for five consecutive years. It can be done anytime, but you must apply it before the deadline, which is currently 30 June 2026.
To make this switch, you will have to create an account on the EU Settlement Scheme website using basic information. You can apply online from the website or send your application by post at:
UK Visa and Immigration
EoS Settlement Scheme
PO Box 6755
Eligibility for the transition
To be eligible for the transition, you need to:
- Be an EU citizen
- Be staying in the UK by 31 December 2020
- Be living in the UK for five years in a row
- Have not been sentenced to jail for more than 12 months
Many misconceptions persist about the EU Settlement Scheme among EU citizens in the UK that need addressing. Here are some misconceptions and their clarifications:
- EUSS is only for EU citizens- it also applies to the family members of EU citizens, including spouses, partners, children, and parents.
- You will be deported if you miss the deadline- there will be no automatic deportation of EU citizens who miss the deadline.
- You cannot work or access public services without EUSS Status- You will have all these benefits with Pre-Settlement status.
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Frequently Asked Questions
Do I need to apply for Settled Status if I have indefinite leave to remain?
No, you do not need to if that is the case. However, you can contact the UK Visa and Immigration to ensure that your immigration status is secure.
What if I have dual citizenship?
If you have dual citizenship, you can still apply for Settled Status, even if you are not an EU citizen. But you must provide evidence of your other citizenship when you apply for it.
Can I leave the UK and return with Settled Status?
Yes, it is possible to leave the UK and return with Settled Status. However, you cannot spend more than 6 months outside the UK in any 12 months. It can make you lose your Settled Status.
How long is EU settled status?
EU Settled Status is for an indefinite period, just like the Indefinite Leave to Remain. After getting the Settled Status, you can live, study, work, and access healthcare in the UK for an unspecified time.
What are the conditions for settled status in the EU?
To be eligible for Settled Status under the EUSS, you must be living in the UK by 31 December 2020, have lived in the UK for five years in a row, and must be able to produce all the required documents needed for the application process.
Is EU settled status permanent?
Yes, it’s a permanent immigration status. You can apply for a British passport within 12 months after getting the Settled Status.
EU Settlement Scheme Settled Status will give you the right to live in the UK, study, work, and access healthcare facilities. So, you must apply for the Settled Status or the Pre-Settled Status if you meet the eligibility criteria. It’ll give you peace of mind knowing you can stay in the UK indefinitely.