Applying to the EU Settlement Scheme
The UK left the EU on 31 January 2020. The rights and status of EU, EEA and Swiss citizens living in the UK will remain the same until 30 June 2021.
If you’re an EU, EEA or Swiss citizen who wants to continue living and working in the UK after 30 June 2021 you’ll most likely need to apply to the EU Settlement Scheme. However, there are some exceptions.
You may also be able to apply to the EU Settlement Scheme if you’re from outside the EU, EEA or Switzerland but you have a family member who is a British, EU, EEA or Swiss citizen.
It’s free to apply to the EU Settlement Scheme.
The deadline for applications is 30 June 2021.
If you have a permanent residence document, your rights and status will not be protected after 30 June 2021. If you want to keep living in the UK after 30 June 2021 you must either:
Indefinite leave to enter or remain
If you have indefinite leave to enter or remain in the UK, you do not need to apply to the EU Settlement Scheme.
But if you decide to apply, and if you meet all of the other conditions, you’ll get settled status. This will allow you to spend longer outside the UK without losing your status.
Applying if you’re an EU citizen
You can apply to the EU Settlement Scheme through the GOV.UK website.
The website explains what you’ll need to apply.
Settled and pre-settled status
If your application to the EU Settlement Scheme is successful, you’ll be given either settled status or pre-settled status.
You’ll usually get settled status if you’ve been living in the UK for at least five years in a row. There are some exceptions.
You’ll usually get pre-settled status if you’ve lived in the UK for less than five years in a row but you started living there before 31 December 2020. You can apply for settled status once you’ve lived in the UK for five years in a row.
Find out about your rights under settled and pre-settled status.
Applying if you’re from outside the EU, EEA or Switzerland
If you’re from outside the EU, EEA or Switzerland and you’re applying to the EU Settlement Scheme, you can link your application to your family member’s if they’re an EU, EEA or Swiss citizen.
You’ll probably get a decision faster that way but you can also apply in your own right based on your own records.
In some situations, you will not be able to apply using the online service. You’ll need to use the EU Settlement Resolution Centre instead.
The deadline for applying is 30 June 2021, except in a few cases.
Applying to the EU Settlement Scheme for your child
You can apply for settled or pre-settled status for your child if they’re under 21 and:
- they’re an EU, EEA or Swiss citizen or
- they're not an EU, EEA or Swiss citizen, but you are - or your spouse or civil partner is
Children can also apply themselves.
If you’ve applied to the EU Settlement Scheme, you can link your child’s application to yours.
If you have not applied to the EU Settlement Scheme, it may be easier to make your own application first. If you do not, either your child will have to apply for themselves or you’ll have to prove they’ve lived in the UK for five years in a row.
Find out more about applying for your child.
Getting a response to your application
Your application is usually processed within 20 working days but it can take up to two months.
Coronavirus (COVID-19) is causing further delays in processing applications at the moment.
Viewing and proving your settled or pre-settled status
If you’re an EU citizen
If your application is successful, you’ll receive a letter by email to confirm your status as settled or pre-settled.
You can also view your status online.
If you need to prove your status to others (such as employers) you must use the online service. You cannot use the letter you receive to prove your status.
If you’re from outside the EU, EEA or Switzerland
If you do not already have a biometric residence card, you’ll be sent a document under the EU Settlement Scheme to prove your rights in the UK.
Applying for UK citizenship
You can apply for UK citizenship 12 months after you get settled status. You must meet the language, character and residence requirements.
Finding a solicitor in England or Wales
To find a solicitor in England or Wales who deals with immigration law:
- visit our Find a solicitor website and search by "Immigration and changing countries"
- call 020 7320 5650