The British government is trying to curb applications for residence permits

The British government is trying to curb applications for residence permits

The British Home Office in charge of Permanent Residence applications has opened an alert system to manage and control the growing number of applications from European residents in the UK since the last referendum of June 23, 2016

At the moment, since the date of the Brexit referendum there have been no normative changes in the status of European citizens in the UK. However, the uncertainty is very high among these citizens to the point that the British government fears an avalanche of applications for residence permits, which have increased significantly since last summer.

According to the Financial Times recently, according to the latest Home Office guide, this body tries to somehow discourage EU citizens living in the UK who are eligible to apply for permanent residence.

This guide, which can be seen on the official website, advises these residents to register in an alert system to receive by e-mail all information, present and future, that they may need to regularize their situation, with the main objective to not collapse the system, despite hiring 240 more employees in the Department of Visas at the Liverpool central with the aim of tackling the growing number of applications, according to figures provided by the agency itself: about 92,000 last year of 2016.

The procedure for applying for permanent residence in the United Kingdom, despite having a new online application in two cases (employed and self-employed), is quite long and complex. First, to gather all the minimum documentation of 5 years in its official form of 85 pages; And secondly, in relation to the need, in the other three cases, for the applicants to have private health insurance.

This complexity hinders, in many cases, the application process; All of this, coupled with the fact that the government has not yet designed a clear immigration policy that will generate certainty in line with the progress of the negotiations with the EU, in addition to the electoral call that will determine, in any case, if the future government opts for a Brexit Hard or a Soft Brexit.

There are currently some three million EU citizens living in the United Kingdom, although they have no legal obligation to prove their right to reside in the country. This figure is estimated to be even higher. By countries, about 916,000 Polish citizens live in the United Kingdom, followed by 332,000 Irish and 233,000 Romanians.

In the case of Spain, it is estimated that about 132,000 Spaniards reside in Great Britain. The Spanish Embassy in London decided to exercise its public function of assistance to its citizens last March after opening a single window to solve the doubts of those who could be affected by the Brexit and also in relation to the Residency Card in the United Kingdom. Only in the first few days received more than 250 queries, as we reported in this post.

At the moment, Spanish and other EU citizens living in the United Kingdom have two years of margin before the end of the Brexit negotiations. It is necessary to point out that the residence requirements continue (and will continue) being the same until that date.

These requirements are the obligation to have resided in the country 5 years, with absences not exceeding six months a year; Take the position of qualified person; Subsequently complete a certificate of registration and pay a fee of about 65 pounds. In addition, entry or exit of the UK is sufficient to have a DNI or a valid passport.

In Del Canto Chambers we recommend that if you meet these requirements, apply for permanent residence to guarantee your rights. Our firm specializes in the management of applications for residence permits and visas in Spain and the United Kingdom. Check that you meet these requirements in this questionnaire or contact us at clerk@delcantochambers.com.

Julio Prieto (@jpr4)

Lawyer at Del Canto Chambers

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