The EU Settlement Scheme offers applicants who are either EU, non-EU EEA or Swiss citizens the right to apply for protection of their UK residence rights alongside their eligible family members. This is in order to protect UK residence rights following the UK departure from the EU.
In order to offer accessibility to the EU Settlement Scheme, agreements have been made to enable applicants from the nations of Iceland, Norway, Switzerland and Lichtenstein to apply alongside their eligible family members through this scheme.
This scheme will operate continuously should a departure agreement be reached between the UK and the EU and will continue to operate with restrictions should a departure agreement not be reached.
Applicants may apply for Settled Status, also known as Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) following a UK residence period of at least 5 years. Applicants may apple for Pre-Settled status should they have resided in the UK for under 5 years. Applicants have access to limited leave until they reach 5 years of residency, after which time they may apply for ILR to remain in the UK.
Applicants who have lived within the UK for under 5 years may apply for Pre-Settled status. There is no time limitation imposed in order to apply for this status. Applicants must be able to demonstrate their current residence within the UK.
Pre-Settled status allows the applicant to remain in the UK for up to 5 years, with limited leave to enter or remain. Migrants may apply for settlement following a 5-year continuous period of residence within the UK.
Applicants who have resided in the UK for 5 years and are able to demonstrate this are able to apply for Settled status. Applicants holding Settled status are granted ILR to remain in the UK.
Children of an EU migrant holding Settled Status in the UK, who are under the age of 21, may also apply for Settled Status without the 5-year continuous residence requirement.
Gaps in Continuous Residence
Applicants may have gaps of continuous residence for up to a maximum of 6 months within any 12-month period. Applicants may also have one instance of a maximum of 12 months absence provided the reason is eligible. Eligible reasons include serious illness, studies, vocational training, pregnancy, childbirth or performing compulsory military service. Such absences are not considered to have broken the 5-year continuous residence requirement.
Applicants may not apply under the EU Settlement Scheme should Settled or Pre-Settled Status have been granted and subsequently revoked. Should they wish to apply then another suitable immigration category must be selected.