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Who Can Apply for Pre-Settled and Settled Status under the EU Settlement Scheme?

We have dedicated the past four years to helping our European clients secure their Permanent Residence (now Settled Status) and British naturalisation approvals as we head into a post-Brexit future. Using the knowledge and experience we have obtained during this time, we have created a Pre-Settled & Settled Status Guide to provide you with the comprehensive information you need to get started. First Migration can assist all EU nationals in securing their pre-settled and settled status in the United Kingdom, subject to meeting the eligibility requirements.

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 30 June 2021. If your application succeeds, you’ll get settled or pre-settled status. The settled status granted is called Indefinite Leave to Remain, and the status will be valid indefinitely as long as you don’t leave the UK for more than two years in one go. The deadline for applying under this scheme was 30th June 2021. You can only apply to the scheme after this deadline if you have a good reason for applying late.

What will it Cost to Apply for Pre-Settled or Settled Status?

There is no Government fee for applicants or their families under this scheme.

Who does not need to Apply?

You do not need to apply for pre-settled or settled status if you have:

  • indefinite leave to enter the UK
  • indefinite leave to remain in the UK
  • British or Irish citizenship (including ‘dual citizenship’)

What is the Difference Between Settled and Pre-Settled Status?

The Ministers have said that EU nationals who have lived in the UK for five years by the end of 2020 will be granted settled status unless they have serious criminal convictions or have a security reason for why they can’t stay. During those five years, they need to spend at least six months each year in the UK. If you haven’t lived in the UK for five years or cannot provide evidence of your residence in the UK, you might qualify for Pre-Settled status instead. Either way,  you must have registered that you are resident in the UK with either Pre-Settled or Settled Status before the 30th June 2021 deadline.

Family Members of EEA Nationals Resident in the UK

All family members must apply individually, although parents or guardians must complete the applications on behalf of children in their care. Children under 21 of parents with Settled Status will be eligible for Settled Status upon application, even if they have lived in the UK for less than five years. A full application is required, but if parents have proof of their continuous residence, it will be presumed that dependent children will have this, too. This also applies to children who arrive in the UK after 31 December 2020.

Applications for children in care will be submitted by the authorities in whose care they are placed.

Children born in the UK with one parent who is already a UK citizen or has Permanent Residence or Settled Status when they were born, are British citizens by birth and do not need to be naturalised or registered as British.

Naturalisation if you are an EEA national or Swiss National

Once you hold Permanent Residence or Settled Status, you must take one final step before becoming a British Citizen. This final step is an application known as naturalisation, where you’ll need to meet a set of defined eligibility criteria. If your application is approved, you’ll be invited to attend a citizenship ceremony to formally become a British Citizen. You’ll be presented with a certificate of British citizenship, which allows you to apply for a British passport.

To qualify for naturalisation, you will need to satisfy the following requirements:

  • You must have applied for and secured an EEA Permanent Residence visa or settled status from the UK Home Office.
  • you must be a member of the European Economic Area and Swiss National
  • you must have lived in the UK for at least the 5 or 6 years before the date of your application
  • you must have spent no more than 450 days in total outside the UK during the last 5 years before the date you apply
  • you must have spent no more than 90 days in total outside the UK in the last 12 months before applying
  • you must have had permanent residence or settled status in the UK for no less than the last 12 months
  • you must have not broken any immigration laws while in the UK
  • you’ve met the knowledge of English and life in the UK test requirements