Home Office confirms important information for participants in EU liquidation system – Commentary


Email from head office to EUSS participants
Head office correspondence with stakeholders


The Home Office has recently made important information available for those who have already obtained an immigration permit under the European Union Settlement Program (EUSS), as well as for those who:

  • resided in the UK on December 31, 2021 and have not yet applied for EUSS; or who
  • have a pending EUSS application.

The information focuses on action points to facilitate movement and encourage the effective exercise of the rights of individuals under the Withdrawal Agreement.

The information comes from the following two sources:

  • an email sent by the Home Office directly to EUSS participants on October 5, 2021; and
  • a letter sent by the Ministry of the Interior to stakeholders on October 5, 2021.

Further details and their implications are discussed below.

Email from head office to EUSS participants

The Home Office email sent on October 5, 2021 to both established and pre-established people covered a range of topics, which are set out below.

Access and update the UKVI account
The Home Office reminded participants to update their personal information on their UK Visa and Immigration (UKVI) online account. This can be done on the ‘Update your UK Visas and Immigration account details’ page on the government website, or through the ‘Update details’ feature in the View and Prove service.

Travel to or from the UK
When traveling to or from the UK, the Home Office advises people to travel with a document registered in their UKVI account. Individuals should add new or additional travel documents to their UKVI account through the ‘Update your UK Visas and Immigration account details’ function or the ‘Update details’ function.

If a participant did not receive confirmation that the new document was successfully added to their account prior to their trip, they should ideally also have the document they requested with to avoid unnecessary delays at the border.

As of October 1, 2021, most citizens of the European Economic Area (EEA) and Switzerland (“EEA citizens” collectively) can no longer use their national identity card to enter the UK. Instead, they must use a valid passport, unless an exception applies.

EEA citizens with status under the EUSS (and certain other persons with rights protected under Citizens’ Rights Agreements) can use their national identity card to travel until December 31, 2025 at least. If you intend to use a national ID card, the Home Office recommends that EUSS participants ensure this is added to their UKVI account prior to travel.

Switching from preset to regulated status
People with pre-established status can apply for established status as soon as they are eligible, which is normally after five years of continuous residence in the UK, the Channel Islands or the Isle of Man. The five-year period is counted from the first day of arrival in the UK. At the latest, they must ensure that the additional request is made before their pre-established status expires.(1)

To qualify for settlement status, one should normally not spend more than six months outside the UK in a 12-month period within the five-year settlement period.(2)

Apps for children
Children should apply to EUSS if they:

  • resided in the United Kingdom on December 31, 2021;
  • are not British or Irish citizens; and
  • do not have any other type of UK immigration status.

Parents can apply on their behalf and they can also link the child’s application to theirs.(3)

If a EUSS participant or her partner gave birth in the UK after 11 p.m. on December 31, 2021 and neither of the two individuals had permanent resident status, another form of leave to remain indefinite or nationality British at the time of birth, and the child is not an Irish citizen, an EUSS application will need to be made on behalf of the child within three months of birth. In practice, this period may be short once the issuance of a birth certificate and a travel document have been taken into account.

A late application can be filed if the deadline is not met, provided that there are reasonable grounds for not meeting the deadline. So far, the Home Office has taken a liberal approach to this requirement. However, there are also risks associated with the harsh environment, such as billing for help from the National Health Service if a request is not made on time.

If the participant or their partner held settlement status, some other form of indefinite residence permit or UK citizenship from their date of birth, a child born in the UK will be British by birth and no EUSS application will be made. will be necessary.

The legal situation and procedure for a child born abroad should be checked and all required actions taken before the child travels to the UK.

Family members who have not yet applied
Home Office confirms that family members who became UK residents before December 31, 2021 should urgently apply to EUSS if they are not UK or Irish citizens and are not detaining not another form of British immigration status. This includes family members who are not EEA citizens and those who hold an EEA biometric residence card, even if the card has an expiration date after June 30, 2021.

This is because the application deadline was 30 June 2021 and UK residence documents issued under EU law ceased to be valid from that date.

A late request can be filed if there are reasonable grounds. The Home Office’s approach in advising social workers, for now, is to give applicants the benefit of the doubt when considering information provided with an application on why the application deadline is due. was not respected.

Join family members
There is no deadline for family members who wish to join someone with established or pre-established status under the EUSS. They can join the program participant at any time as long as they apply for EUSS within 90 days of arriving in the UK.(4)

However, this group should exercise caution when planning their travel requests and plans to enter the UK.

For example, recent changes to immigration rules allow a joining family member to apply under the EUSS if they are in the UK as a visitor. However, the Home Office recently confirmed that a joining family member may be refused entry as a visitor if they do not fully comply with visitor rules at the time of entry (including if he intends to leave at the end of the visit). No out-of-rules concessions exist to reach family members who know they wish to apply for the EUSS before seeking entry into the UK. .

Applications pending
A person who submits a valid application to the EUSS as of July 1, 2021 will have their rights recognized for the duration of their application, including the right to health care and other services, as well as the right to work. , study and rent a property (in England).

Head office correspondence with stakeholders

The Home Office sent a letter to stakeholders on October 5, 2021 to confirm the advice for people wishing to travel to or from the UK with a pending EUSS application that was made on the basis that they were UK residents as of December 31, 2020. The letter does not cover joining family members who were not UK residents by the end of 2020.

Candidates who applied to EUSS before June 30, 2021
The letter advises applicants who applied before June 30, 2021 to travel to or from the UK once they have a Certificate of Application (CoA) that confirms they have made a valid application under the program. . When sufficient additional proof of the date of the request is provided to the Border Force, it will be accepted; however, this approach carries a risk of being delayed at the border when returning to the UK.

The Home Office also mentions that the rights of these individuals are protected by secondary law as long as their valid EUSS application and any related appeals are pending.

The Home Office has confirmed that a candidate for the EUSS who resided in the UK on December 31, 2020 and applied abroad under the EUSS before June 30, 2021, then entered the UK while on hold, will not be required to leave and return. -enter once their application has been accepted, despite the fact that their application will have been an authorization to enter (rather than remain) in the UK.

Candidates who applied to EUSS after June 30, 2021
These applicants have been ordered not to travel to or from the UK until they have a CoA, and they are advised that upon their return they may also be asked to provide proof that they were residing in the UK before December 31, 2020. They are also told that they would not be able to prove their right to study in the UK unless they have a CoA.

The Home Office confirms that the rights of these applicants are protected as long as their valid EUSS application and any related appeals are pending. This recognition stems from a policy statement issued by the Home Office on August 6, 2021 and is currently not supported by any legislation.

For more information on this topic, please contact Andrew Osborne, Supinder Singh Sian, Kathryn Denyer or Sophie Hunter at Lewis Silkin by phone (+44 20 7074 8000) or email ([email protected], [email protected], [email protected] Where [email protected]). Lewis Silkin’s website can be accessed at www.lewissilkin.com.

End Notes

(1) More information is available here.

(2) More information is available here.

(3) More information is available here.

(4) More information is available here.

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