Deadline fast approaching for EU settlement scheme
From: Alan BruzonCEO, Eastbourne Citizens Advice
If you’re an EU, EEA or Swiss citizen, you and your family can apply to the EU Settlement Scheme to continue living in the UK after June 30 this year.
The EEA includes the EU countries and also Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway. If your application is successful, you’ll get either settled or pre-settled status.
This will give you the right to remain in the UK after June 30. You may be able to stay in the UK without applying - for example, if you’re an Irish citizen or you already have indefinite leave to remain.
It is free to apply. To qualify for Settled Status you’ll need to prove you have lived in the UK for five years. You must have started living in the UK by 31 December 2020.
If you do not have five years’ continuous residence when you apply, you’ll usually get pre-settled status. You can then apply to change this to settled status once you’ve got five years’ continuous residence.
You can find out about the scheme by visiting gov.uk/settled-status-eu-citizens-families which contains the full guidance. It doesn’t matter how long you have lived in the UK, you will still need to apply unless you have indefinite leave to enter the UK, indefinite leave to remain in the UK or have British or Irish citizenship (including ‘dual citizenship’).
All EU nationals will need to apply in order to remain in the UK after June 30.
Citizens Advice Eastbourne wants to make sure all EU nationals in the town know about the scheme, find out how to apply and know what help is available.
This scheme opened in April 2019 but there hasn’t been much publicity about it.
It’s important that European nationals know about the scheme and look into how to apply. It is better to be informed and find out what you need to do.
We would also urge European nationals to spread this message across their communities, especially to elderly or vulnerable people who may not find out from other channels.
For further advice and information contact Citizens Advice Eastbourne Free phone: 0800 144 8848 or visit their website www.eastbournecab.co.uk/eusettlement You can send a message via www.eastsussexcab.co.uk