EU nationals and their family members are increasingly looking to secure their status either through registration under the EU Settlement Scheme or securing British Citizenship.
The EU Settlement Scheme
For many EU citizens and their family members, securing their status will involve registering under the EU Settlement Scheme. Under the Scheme you will usually get Settled Status if you have lived in the UK for a continuous five year period when you apply.
If you have lived in the UK for less than a continuous five year period then you will get Pre-Settled Status. Those with Pre-Settled Status can then apply for Settled Status once they have accrued five years’ continuous residence.
The strongest form of immigration status in the UK is British Citizenship. Large numbers of EU nationals, and their family members, may be able to apply for Citizenship.
In November 2015 the law was changed so that any EU national, and their family member, must hold a Permanent Residence Document (PRD) before applying to become British. Under the EU Settlement Scheme, Settled Status is considered to be a PRD for the purposes of naturalisation.
This means that, for those without a PRD, the path to Citizenship is a two-stage process; apply for a PRD and then apply for Citizenship.
There are two ways to get a PRD: apply for a PRD under the ‘old’ system; or apply for Settled Status.
However, those who go for Settled Status will have to hold this for at least one year, before being eligible to apply for Citizenship. In many circumstances, a PRD under the old system will enable an individual to apply for British Citizenship straight away.
If you are unsure of your position, Blacks’ Immigration team can advise you on the best route available to you and represent you all the way to British Citizenship.
For more information about our Blacks’ Immigration team can help you, or for a free no obligation discussion, please email or us today on 0113 322 2842.