Brexit information for NATECLA members
NATECLA recommends ESOL practitioners and students who rely on EU citizenship to live and study in the UK, including family members, to apply under the EU Settlement Scheme as soon as possible. The situation is uncertain and changing day-by-day, so we strongly suggest that you seek the most up-to-date advice from organisations specialising in EU migrants’ rights.
The current deadline for applying is 30 June 2021, or 31 December 2020 if the UK leaves the EU without a deal.
In the first instance, please visit the government’s website for information: https://www.gov.uk/settled-status-eu-citizens-families/what-youll-need-to-apply
Find out if you need to apply under the EU Settlement Scheme by using this eligibility tool - https://www.london.gov.uk/what-we-do/eu-londoners-hub/check-your-eligibility-settled-status
The most straight-forward way to evidence your residence in the UK is to use your National Insurance Number. If you have had breaks in employment or had casual employment you may find that you need to provide additional evidence, such as letters from accredited education providers, bank statements and bills. You may find this checklist useful - https://www.london.gov.uk/what-we-do/eu-londoners-hub/brexit-what-you-need-know/settled-status-application-checklist
You will need a valid passport or biometric national identity card to apply. A biometric document contains a chip (like a bank card has a chip) that holds information on you. If you don’t have any of these forms of ID, you may need to post your documents to the Home Office.
Some tips from those who have applied:
• Use your local ID scanning service if you are having issues downloading the app or scanning documents. You can find out where to get your ID scanned here: https://www.gov.uk/id-scan-eu-settlement-scheme
• Have all your evidence ready in case you need to submit additional paperwork. You will be able to upload further evidence of your residence through the online application system. You will also be able to email or post evidence to the Home Office in accordance to your Home Office’s caseworker’s instructions.
• If there is a delay you should contact the Home Office’s Resolution Centre on 03001237379. You can ask for updates of your case by email: updates@apply-for-EU-settled-status.homeoffice.gov.uk. You will need to quote the 16-digit application reference number in the subject header.
• If you have lived in the UK for five years or more, and you are offered to be considered for Pre-Settled Status, instead of Settled Status, make sure to challenge the decision and submit evidence to show that you have acquired settled status.
Issues that our students in particular may face:
● Getting information from unreliable sources. We should always be advising students to seek advice from reputable organisations e.g. their local Citizens Advice or law centre.
● Not being able to download the app, not having a smartphone, IPhone 7 and newer models or access to one. The ID scanning service is offered by some local authorities, most charge between £14 to £21 for scanning your passport/ID, some are free for residents only.
● Applicants need an email address to register and not everyone has one (especially those with low level of literacy and English). It has to be your own email address, you cannot use someone else's (unless you are applying for your child under 21). You will need to log in using your email address going forward to update your records if and when they change (such as a new address or passport number).
● The 0300 phone number costs the same as a local call but may be costly using a pay as you go phone.
● Delays and request for further evidence may be caused by the following situations:
○ Discrepancies in names and name spelling.
○ Gaps in employment history
○ Long absences from the UK
○ Lack of proof of residence
In all instances we should refer students to the appropriate advice service. Check your organisation/college’s procedure for referring students for advice. As mentioned earlier, Citizens Advice has advice. Local councils, charities and law centres may also offer support for vulnerable EU citizens.
Find organisations supporting EU citizens with their applications by entering the person’s postcode here: https://www.gov.uk/help-eu-settlement-scheme
Or check out the European Commission’s map of support services available nationally here - https://www.eurights.uk/#search
Please note: All children are entitled to compulsory education irrespective of their or their parents' immigration status, schools are not obliged to ask about kids' or parents' nationalities (and parents do not need to respond if asked).
The Home Office has reassured that there will be no change to the rights and status of EU citizens currently living in the UK until 30 June 2021, or 31 December 2020 if the UK leaves the EU without a deal.
See our previous Brexit statements here:
>> See our September 2019 Update to NATECLA's No-Deal Brexit statement
>> See out August 2019 No-Deal Brexit statement
>> See our December 2018 response to Brexit