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Brexit EEA Nationals

Brexit information for EU & EEA and Swiss Nationals

Last updated: 06 May 2020

EU & EEA and Swiss Nationals 

The UK left the EU on 31 January 2020 under the terms of the Withdrawal Agreement, which was made between the UK and the EU. (Separate agreements were made between the UK and Norway, Iceland, Lichtenstein and Switzerland). These agreements became law in the UK under the European Union (Withdrawal Agreement) Act 2020.  This enactment included a transitional period, which is expected to continue until 31 December 2020. The UK can apply to extend the transitional period, however, this is unlikely.

EU/EEA Swiss students and eligible family members who are living in the UK by the 31st December 2020 and wanting to stay beyond the end of the transitional period will either need to apply for the EU Settlement Scheme by the relevant deadline or apply under another relevant immigration category.   

Arriving in the UK after the 31st December 2020

The government published its policy statement in February that outlined its intended plans for the new immigration system. The information was limited, especially for students. However, what we do know from the proposal is that EU/EEA nationals arriving to the UK for their studies from the 1 January 2021 will need to apply for a visa if they are coming to the UK to study.

This means that EU/EEA/Swiss students and eligible family members arriving to the UK after the 31st December 2020 will need to apply for immigration permission to come to the UK under the relevant immigration category that is in place at that time. 

We will continue to update this page as soon as we receive new information.

 

 

The current landscape is unpredictable and may cause some uncertainty for prospective students wanting to come to the UK to study. UKCISA provides up-to-date information for prospective EU/EEA and Swiss nationals wanting to come to the UK to study and how the leaving the EU will affect them and their families depending on when they arrive in the UK. They cover fee status, student funding and immigration:

UKCISA - Brexit: what does it mean for students and their family?  

 

For current students, please visit our internal pages, where we have additional information and FAQs for you:

https://internal.kcl.ac.uk/brexit/student/index.aspx

 

Immigration for new arrivals - Do I need a visa?

There is currently no requirement for EU/EEA or Swiss nationals to apply for any immigration permission to travel to and study in the UK.  You will need a valid passport or EU national identity card to enter the UK.

EU/EEA Swiss students and eligible family members who are living in the UK by the 31st December 2020 and wanting to stay beyond the end of the transitional period will either need to apply for the EU Settlement Scheme by the relevant deadline or apply under another relevant immigration category.   

Arriving to the UK after the 31st December 2020

EU/EEA/Swiss students and eligible family members arriving to the UK after the 31st December 2020 will need to apply for immigration permission to come to the UK under the relevant immigration category that is in place at that time. The details of the immigration system are not yet known but as soon as we have more information, we will update our pages.

The government published its policy statement in February which outlined its intended plans for the new immigration system. The information was limited, especially for students. However, what we do know from the proposal is that EU/EEA nationals arriving to the UK for their studies from the 1 January 2021 will need to apply for a visa if they are studying a full-time degree programme.

As soon as we have more details, we will continue to update this page.

For further advice, please get in contact with the Advice & Guidance Team.

EU Settlement Scheme applications

The EU Settlement Scheme is open to all EU, EEA and Swiss nationals and eligible family members and is free to apply. 

The Settlement Scheme is an immigration application and as such you should ensure you are eligible and have the relevant documentation available before submitting your application.  A refusal can impact on your immigration history, so please ensure you read the most up-to-date guidance available before applying.

To apply you can either use the identity (ID) app (available on android phones/tablets and now available on an iphone device) to confirm your identity and then complete an application online  or you can upload your documents via an application centre and complete the application online. 

Both UKCISA and gov.uk have some useful information and guides on the EU Settlement Scheme:

Gov. UK - Settled and pre-settled status for EU citizens and their families

UKCISA - Brexit - EU Settlement Scheme

Can you help me submit my application for Settled Status?

Applying for the EU Settlement scheme has been designed to be both quick and straightforward. There are several useful resources available to refer to when making your application. We have listed these further down the page. However, if you have questions regarding your individual situation, then please contact the Advice & Guidance Team.

If you are planning to apply using the Settlement Scheme, you should start preparing your evidence of eligibility as outlined in the most recent guidance

 

Useful Resources:

UKCISA: Brexit: what we know for EEA students and their family

UUK (Universities UK): Brexit FAQs

The Free Movement Blog has a useful summary of how to apply for "settled status" with screen shots of the application process: How to apply for "settled status" for EU citizens

There is also a YouTube video of a mock application.

Sign up for Home Office email alerts - Status of EU citizens in the UK - email alerts 

Immigration Rules beyond the end of the transition period

The immigration routes for EU/EEA/Swiss nationals arriving after the transition period are still under discussion. Once more information becomes available throughout the transition period, we will update our webpages. 

Health Insurance whilst in the UK

 

 

EU/ EEA and Swiss students are required to have Comprehensive Sickness Insurance (CSI) to be exercising their treaty rights whilst in the UK. This includes a valid EHIC card or comprehensive private medical insurance. You can find more about health insurance on the UKCISA website:

 

https://www.ukcisa.org.uk/Information--Advice/EU-EEA--Swiss-Students/Staying-in-the-UK-as-a-student#layer-5121

 

If you do not have a valid EHIC card or comprehensive private medical insurance, you could be charged for using the NHS. Therefore, we strongly advise that you get medical insurance as soon as possible to ensure that you are covered. (You cannot apply for your EHIC in the UK, you can only apply for it within your home country)

 

These healthcare arrangements will remain in place until 31 December 2020, the end of the current transition period, for EU/EEA and Swiss national coming to the UK.

 

 We are waiting for further guidance on continuing EU healthcare entitlements following Brexit from the UK government, and a definitive response on whether EHIC validity is likely continue after 30th December 2020. If the EHIC is no longer valid after 30th December 2020, you may find that you need to be covered by private medical insurance to continue satisfying the “comprehensive sickness insurance” requirement and accessing the NHS for free. We will update these pages when more information is available.

Please see the UKCISA website for more information.

 

 

 


 

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