Implementing the Withdrawal Agreement: citizens’ rights Contents

3EU citizens in the UK

The EU Settlement Scheme

58.The EU Settlement Scheme (EUSS) is the constitutive system put in place in the UK to enable eligible applicants to establish their right to remain in the UK. In most cases, EEA nationals,93 their family members, and others currently residing in the UK based on rights derived from EU law will no longer have a legal right to reside in the UK once it leaves the EU. Therefore, they need to make an application.94 In addition to EU citizens, there are also other categories of people who are eligible to apply. These include:

59.Applicants are required to complete three key steps: prove their identity, confirm their UK residence, and declare any criminal convictions. The eligibility rules for EU Settled Status are set out in Appendix EU to the Immigration Rules.96

60.There are two categories of status under the EUSS: Settled Status and Pre-Settled Status. Generally, an applicant is eligible for Settled Status (essentially Indefinite Leave to Remain) where, on the date of the application, they can show they have five years continuous residence in the UK. Pre-Settled Status is awarded where the applicant qualifies otherwise but has not yet accrued a continuous qualifying period of five years.97

61.Those granted Pre-Settled Status, who subsequently acquire five years residence, will need to apply again to upgrade their status to Settled Status. The Government has said it will send a reminder to those with Pre-Settled Status to apply for Settled Status before their pre-settled status expires.98

Numbers and statistics

62.While most EU countries have a form of registration for citizens from another Member State exercising their treaty rights to free movement that can be used as a basis for estimating the number of UK nationals on their territory, the UK does not. The ONS estimate, based on the Annual Population Survey of private households in the UK,99 is that there were around 3.4 million EU, EEA and Swiss citizens resident in the UK in June 2019.100 The Home Office’s own impact assessment from March 2019 gave an estimate of between 3.5 and 4.1 million—a range of 600,000 people.101

63.One of our witnesses, Dr Kuba Jablonowski, Research Associate, the3million, a campaigning organisation for EU citizens in the UK, questioned the accuracy of estimates of the EU population in the UK. He said the most recent ONS estimate of Bulgarian citizens in the UK is 121,000, yet there have been 179,000 applications to the EUSS from Bulgarian citizens, “so it seems that every Bulgarian citizen in the UK has put 1.5 applications through the settlement scheme system.”102 He said the ONS statistics are “very helpful” but “they are not granular enough” to monitor uptake of the EU settlement scheme.103 In addition, free movement continues until the end of transition, so people are still moving back and forth, and there are EU citizens who have lived in the UK and retained rights of residency here, but are currently in another Member State and could still be eligible to apply.104

64.In addition, the Home Office has published monthly and quarterly statistics on the number of applications to the EU Settlement Scheme, and outcomes, since May 2019. The quarterly release is only headline figures, while the quarterly statistics publication includes more detail it applies to older data. The most recent quarterly statistics were published in August 2020, for the period up to June 2020.105 On 8 October 2020, a headline figure was published for all applications up to 30 September 2020.106

65.The EUSS opened fully on 30 March 2019.107 As of 30 September 2020, the total number of applications received was 4,061,900, and the number of applications concluded was 3,880,400.108 Of these, 2,172,200 (56%) were granted settled status and 1,614,600 (42%) were granted pre-settled status. The highest number of applications, by nationality, have been Polish (718,620), Romanian (609,060), Italian (372,380), Portuguese (286,390) and Spanish (224,800). These top five nationalities represent 59% of all applications received.109

66.On 8 October 2020, Kevin Foster MP, the Minister for Future Borders and Immigration, announced that the number of applications to the scheme had surpassed four million, and said:

European citizens are an integral part of our society, culture and community which is why I’m really proud we’ve already surpassed four million applications to the hugely successful EU Settlement Scheme.

A wide range of support is available online and over the telephone if you need it and we are funding 72 organisations across the UK to help the more vulnerable in society.110

67.The most recent quarterly statistical release has a graphic showing the number of applications received and concluded since the scheme opened fully in March 2019.111

68.The data has been criticised for double counting applications from the same individual. The Home Office data counts the number of applications rather than individual applicants and has acknowledged that about 2% of applications are duplicates—around 70,000 already in the system.112


69.Applications for the EUSS can be refused on two grounds: eligibility and suitability (criminal checks). The figures up to 30 September say that 16,600 applications have been refused.113 The quarterly statistics, giving greater detail on the 3.5 million applications made up to June, show that only 3,060 had been refused. (There has been a considerable increase in refusals between June and September). Of the 3,060 refusals up to June, 99% were refused on eligibility grounds and 1% were refused on suitability grounds.114 Eligibility refusals are either due to lack of evidence of residence or failure to show a relationship to an EU citizen. The latest statistics show that 75% of the refusals were due to lack of evidence of residence.115 Before February 2020, most refusals had been on suitability grounds. Since February, the Home Office began refusing EU Settlement Scheme applications on eligibility grounds, and have said many such refusals relate to:

… cases that had been under consideration for several months and, in most cases, subject to repeated unsuccessful attempts to obtain missing evidence or information from the applicant.116

70.There were 205,990 applications from non-EEA family members compared to 3,487,870 from EU citizens. However, 49% of the total 3,060 refusals were applications from non-EEA nationals, and non-EEA nationals who were successful had a greater proportion of Pre-Settled Status (64%) than Settled Status (33%).117

71.EUSS allows for applications to use a paper form by applicants who are applying on the basis of a derivative right to reside,118 do not hold a valid identity document and are unable to obtain one, or are unable to apply using the online application form and cannot be supported to do so.119 The number of paper applications were not included in the statistics until the quarterly report published on 27 August 2020.120 The latest statistics said 7,200 applications had been made on the basis of a derivative right to reside.121 Derivative rights refusals accounted for a quarter (25%) of the 3,060 refusals under the scheme as a whole. Of these, Zambrano applications had a much higher proportion of refused outcomes (770 refusals, 61%) than the other routes based on a derivative right to reside in the UK.

72.Non-EEA family members might not be applying because they are unaware of the need to apply as the communications tend to emphasise that the scheme is for EU citizens, and because the procedure they have to go through can require an increased amount of evidence.122

73.The EU Settlement Scheme has been a success for the majority of applicants. The system for applying has clearly worked for a large proportion of those who have applied. For the scheme to have received over 4 million applications is a considerable achievement.

74.We welcome the fact that such a large proportion of those who have applied received a grant of status successfully. Many EU citizens are of working age, can provide evidence of residence, and have the digital skills to navigate the process. At the same time, we do not know how many people are eligible to apply and are yet to apply, because the estimates of how many EU citizens, and other people eligible to apply for the scheme, are not reliable.

75.There is potential in using the data to show which categories of applicant are applying and receiving the correct status. We also know more about those categories who might not be applying in the numbers expected, or are applying and receiving the incorrect status, or getting refused on eligibility grounds. This is as important now as it was at the beginning of the scheme. We urge the Home Office and ONS to continue to gather data on the administration of the Settlement Scheme and publish statistics on its operation up to and beyond the deadline of 30 June 2021. The intelligence gained needs to feed back into how the Home Office targets its communications and the support it provides, including but not only, to the current grant funded bodies.

Improvements to the EU Settlement Scheme

76.We comment further on some aspects of concern around of the operation of the EU Settlement Scheme that were raised by our witnesses, including:

Physical document

77.The UK Government EU Settlement Scheme Statement of Intent said:

Evidence of this status will be given to EU citizens in digital form; no physical document will be issued to them.123

The Withdrawal Agreement allows for “a document evidencing such status which may be in a digital form” under Article 18(1)(a).

78.Luke Piper, Head of Policy, the3million, explained to us the Government’s arguments against a physical document. He said:

The reason that is communicated to us repeatedly of why things need to be digital only is that, in the large, a digital status is more secure and, essentially, a safer means of proving your status.124

We heard that there were examples of people getting assistance from unregulated immigration advisers to make their application, then the third party retain the log-in details necessary to access the platform, and charge to send on details to employers.125

79.Barbara Drozdowicz, Chief Executive, Eastern European Resource Centre, said that the Home Office argued that the online product does not expire, but it remains linked to the physical document, such as a passport, used by the individual in their application to the EU settlement scheme. If the passport is changed, then the applicant has to update the online system.126 Barbara Drozdowicz also gave us examples of some of the problems in the digital only system: accessing the online profile is not straightforward for people not fluent in IT and end up relying on the pdf document they receive informing them that a status has been granted which is not a substitute for actual evidence of status.127

80.Not only does the EU citizen relying upon the digital only status have to be familiar with how it works, but also the person asking them to demonstrate their status has to understand it.128 This would include employers, landlords, banks, but also public sector organisations such as the DWP and the NHS.129 The Public Law Project has listed the nine steps that a third party would have to take in order to check the status of an EU citizen, which includes:

  1. Request the code from the applicant;
  2. Wait for an email with a link to arrive;
  3. Open and read the email;
  4. Search, identify, and open the correct website (there is no link in the email);
  5. Start the checking process;
  6. Enter the share code from the email;
  7. Enter the applicant’s date of birth;
  8. Enter their company name; and
  9. Check that the photo on their screen looks like the person applying for the job and keep a secure copy of the online check, either electronically or in hard copy.130

These processes require reliable access to the internet and for none of the elements of the system to be unavailable.131 There were over 100,000 online status checks carried out on EU citizens between March and June 2020, mostly to assess eligibility for benefits.132 Barbara Drozdowicz told us that the lack of a physical document has contributed to the confusion over eligibility for benefits, because claimants have been unable to show a photo ID card showing their status. She said it was unclear how some decisions have been made by the DWP in terms of using settled status as a proof of eligibility.133

81.Campaigners for EU citizens have called for a physical document to be available in addition to the digital status.134 As we explain above with reference to the common format residence card for UK nationals in the EU, it would be a physical document for EU citizens in the UK, available as an option, to evidence their status. Barbara Drozdowicz said the option of a physical card would give an additional layer of safety against criminal attempts to ‘hijack’ someone’s status.135 A recent survey of 3,000 EU citizens found more than 10% had already been asked to provide proof of settled status,136 and that the digital only status was deterring some from applying. Dr Jablonowski told us:

Of those who are yet to apply, 35% said that they were putting off their decision to apply because of the digital status. People are really concerned about it. Perhaps the most important finding of that survey, again based on more than 3,000 surveys completed, was that the physical proof came right at the top of concerns of EU citizens: 89% said they would like an option, not compulsory, of physical proof.137

82.People are familiar with the current system which relied on passports or a physical document. Luke Piper said that:

It has taken many years for employers and the general public to familiarise themselves with these documents. We will see a seismic shift from that to a digital-only platform that requires multiple steps to access the status.138

And this change from reliance upon a physical document to a digital only status is after the six-month grace period between 1 January 2021 and 30 June 2021. Mr Piper said:

It is not a small population of people who are going to have to go around and prove their digital-only status. We are talking about millions of people here. It is quite concerning that there is a guinea pig, untested trial going on here with EU citizens.139

In the case of no physical document, he argued that there would need to be a large communication campaign, not just for the applicant, but:

It also has to be the comms of the immigration system to the public at large, because without that knowledge, unless the status quo of physical documents continues, it is going to lead to some quite significant problems further down the line.140

The Immigration and Social Security Coordination Bill was amended in the House of Lords on 5 October, to include the option of a physical document to be made available to successful applicants to the EUSS.

83.We support the call for EU citizens in the UK to be able to have the option of applying for a physical document to evidence their residency status under the Withdrawal Agreement, in addition to their digital status.

84.From 1 July 2021, there will be a transition from the familiar passport or identity card check to an online process. This will apply in a range of situations where an immigration status check is made, be it employers, landlords, public service providers such as the DWP and the NHS. But it will only be for EU citizens. For non-EU citizens, the same checks will be carried out in a way that is already known and familiar. We urge the Government to publish guidance as soon as possible, aimed at all those who currently carry out immigration status checks and who may be faced with having to carry out parallel procedures—digital for EU citizens and physical checks for non-EU citizens—from 1 July 2021.

85.We recommend that the Government set out how it intends to monitor the introduction of the digital checks and that a review of its implementation should be published within six months of 30 June 2021.

Pre-Settled Status

86.Pre-Settled Status is for those EU citizens who otherwise qualify but cannot demonstrate five years continuous residence in the UK. The Home Office Impact Assessment from 2019 gave a range of between 900,000 and 1.4 million for the estimated number of Pre-Settled grants. The latest figures show there have been 1,614,600 grants of Pre-Settled Status (about 42% of all applications).141

87.There is evidence of people being given Pre-Settled Status wrongly,142 either because they accepted the first offer of a form of status not understanding that they could offer further information, or the system was unable to take into account the length of time they had lived in the UK. Kuba Jablonowski told us that an Independent Chief Inspector of Borders and Immigration report found that, in the three months between April and July 2019, there were more than 7,000 people who wanted to select the option of getting Settled Status but ended up on Pre-Settled Status.143 The Settlement Scheme provides that an administrative review may be requested if a person receives a grant of Pre-Settled Status believes they qualify for Settled Status, or where an application is refused on eligibility grounds. Research into the outcome of EUSS administrative reviews found that, as of 12 September 2019, of the total 325 administrative reviews that had been decided, 291 resulted in a decision of Pre-Settled Status being overturned and Settled Status granted. This means 89.5% of initial decisions were overturned.144

88.Kuba Jablonowski said that “it is impossible to quantify how many people were granted wrongly” but the3million had seen “numerous cases”. He also highlighted the instances of individuals granted Pre-Settled Status going to the media to publicise it, and within days the Home Office informing them that they would be upgraded to Settled Status.145 He also argued for publishing data on gender and the number of applications and the number of outcomes by gender, which could help understand better the disparities in who might be getting granted Pre-Settled Status incorrectly.146

89.This is important as Pre-Settled Status does not provide the same protection as that of Settled Status. The right of return for those with Pre-Settled Status can be lost if they are outside the UK for more than six months in a 12 month period, whereas those with Settled Status can be away for up to five years without losing their status and right to return. This has implications where Covid lockdowns interrupt the ability to travel back to the UK within six months.147

90.The3million told us that many EU citizens who have been granted Pre-Settled Status under the EU Settlement Scheme had been struggling to access Universal Credit. To be eligible for Universal Credit requires the applicant to pass a ‘Habitual Residence’ test to show that the UK is their main home and that they have a ‘right to reside’. Those with Settled Status satisfy the ‘right to reside’ requirement. Those with Pre-Settled Status were initially able to satisfy the ‘right to reside’ requirement until the UK regulations explicitly reversed that in July. The UK Government view is that Pre-Settled Status is not a right-to-reside and that citizens will continue to need to demonstrate that they are exercising a qualifying Treaty right to access income-related benefits.148 There is a court case, brought by two EU citizens with Pre-Settled Status who were refused Universal Credit, currently awaiting an appeal date.149 The European Commission appear to have raised this matter at the Joint Committee held on 28 September.150

91.Pre-Settled Status lasts for up to five years, at which point it will be lost, unless the applicant applies again for Settled Status. It is difficult to know, from the current data, what number of those with Pre-Settled Status will fail to upgrade.151 If they do not apply then they lose their rights under the EUSS until they have successfully upgraded to Settled Status. There remains the issue as to how many people awarded Pre-Settled Status are aware that they need to reapply. As Kuba Jablonowski said:

If you do not realise what the limitations of pre-settled status are, the question has to be asked: will you know that you need to reapply to secure your rights in the long term?152

The recent survey of migrant workers in Fenland, Cambridgeshire, found that there was a presumption among a number of EU migrants that those granted Pre-Settled Status would have an automatic transition to Settled Status after five years, rather than have to re-apply with further evidential requirements. The report said, “This lack of awareness could become a serious problem in the future for EU migrants granted only pre-settled status now.”153

92.Barbara Drozdowicz asked whether individuals who may need to reapply would necessarily be aware that they need to do so when that moment comes, “because hardly anyone is mapping out their life against their immigration status. This is not how life works.”154 There will not be one single deadline—such as 30 June 2021—that applies to all and can be communicated broadly. Each person with Pre-Settled Status will have their own date in the future to remember.

93.EU citizens coming to the UK did not expect to have immigration controls imposed on them afterwards, so alongside explaining to them that they need to apply, there needs to be better communication of the difference between Pre-Settled Status and Settled Status, and what options are available if awarded Pre-Settled Status. In addition, the Government should ensure that those granted Pre-Settled Status are clearly informed that they need to reapply at a date in the future. Again, any interaction with the system requires the applicant to have the documents they used for their original application. There will need to be support in place for people whose Pre-Settled Status matures over the next five years.

94.The Government should explain how it will remind EU citizens with Pre-Settled Status when they have acquired five years residence and can make a new application to upgrade to Settled Status, and how much notice they will give. Reminding people to upgrade is preferable to thousands of EU citizens inadvertently becoming unlawfully resident in the UK because their Pre-Settled Status expired, and they were unaware that they needed to take further action. The Government should also be flexible and pragmatic in cases where it has not managed to make confirmed contact with a person who has Pre-Settled Status, to remind them to apply for Settled Status. In such cases such individuals should be given reasonable additional time to apply.

95.The Government should produce a more detailed analysis of the significant proportion of applicants for Settled Status who are instead only being granted Pre-Settled Status. An equality impact assessment should be carried out to clarify how many long term residents, with gaps in employment in the last five years, for example due to caring duties, are affected and ensure that the current system is not resulting in women being disproportionately granted only Pre-Settled Status. In addition, we recommend that the Government update and publish its Policy Equality Statement for the EU Settlement Scheme.155

Vulnerable applicants

96.While there is broad consensus that the Settlement Scheme has worked for many people, some have encountered difficulties in applying or could be expected to find it difficult to apply, including:

Some of these may be addressed by improved communication campaigns and support for NGOs etc. Some may require more specific measures to overcome the barriers.


97.There are estimated to be more than 900,000 children of EU citizen parents (not including Ireland) living in the UK in 2017, born either in the UK or abroad.158 The latest Home Office statistics, as of June 2020, said that 529,670 applications (14% of all applications) had been from people under 18.159

98.The Home Office estimate there are 9,000 children and young people in the care system who are eligible for EUSS. The Children’s Society have estimated that, as of May 2020, UK local authorities—with a duty of care to these vulnerable children—have made about 730 applications for these children.160 This equates to only about 11% of the estimated 9,000 eligible children in/leaving care having secured EUSS status.

99.Barbara Drozdowicz explained why these cases can be difficult. She said that, first the child has to be identified as an EU national and that they need support to go through the EU Settlement scheme, then there is a need to identify the complexity of those cases and be able to refer them to appropriate immigration advisers, and also there may be a need to collect or reissue documentation so the child can evidence their residence. In addition, there may be an issue of consent for an application to be submitted on behalf of the child.161 Mr Piper said Home Office staff should have clearer guidance about how to deal with such cases, particularly on providing evidence where children might be unable to acquire identity documents and on more support for social work agencies.162

The elderly

100.Similarly, there is concern about the number of applications from older EU citizens. The latest Home Office statistics, up to June 2020, show that 84,150 applications had been from those aged 65 or above. This equated to only 2% of the number of applications. Elderly people may face barriers to applying to the EUSS, including dementia, isolation or low digital literacy. Older foreign-born residents are more likely not to have a passport.163 In addition, Barbara Drozdowicz told us that many older people have a sense of belief that they are British, but have no documentation, such as a passport, to prove it. They have to identify if the person is a British citizen first.164

101.Dr Jablonowski said there are “a large number of people who have been here for decades” but who have been offered Pre-Settled Status rather than Settled Status. They need to know about the Settlement Scheme, and know what status they should get, and make sure they do not accept the lesser Pre-Settled Status. And if they do, that they need to reapply to upgrade at a later date.165

102.Some applicants are likely to face difficulties applying for the scheme, be it through language barriers, lack of support to complete the application, or because they are unable to source the documentary evidence to support their application. There are, by definition, people who are going to be hard-to-reach, possibly through remoteness and social isolation. These factors may combine, such as for elderly people living in rural areas where sources of advice are limited. Communications and support to such groups need to be enhanced as the deadline approaches. This can be through intermediaries, and the Government needs to learn from the experience of NGOs who are already working to try and support those marginalised and vulnerable groups.

Applications after the deadline

103.Article 18 of the Withdrawal Agreement states that the deadline for submitting an application shall not be less than six months from the end of the transition period, which is the 31 December 2020. The UK has said that EU citizens resident here by 31 December 2020 will be eligible to apply, and therefore the deadline for applications will be 30 June 2021. Article 18 continues:

(d) where the deadline for submitting the application referred to in point (b) is not respected by the persons concerned, the competent authorities shall assess all the circumstances and reasons for not respecting the deadline and shall allow those persons to submit an application within a reasonable further period of time if there are reasonable grounds for the failure to respect the deadline;

In a letter to the Home Affairs Committee on 14 April 2020, the Home Secretary wrote:

Where someone has reasonable grounds for missing the deadline, they will be given a further opportunity in which to apply. As with all aspects of the scheme we will take a flexible and pragmatic approach. We intend to publish guidance for caseworkers in due course on what constitutes reasonable grounds for missing the deadline to ensure consistency of approach.166

The guidance to caseworkers has not been published.167

104.The Home Secretary gave three examples of how this might be applied: children whose parent or guardian does not apply on their behalf, those in abusive or controlling relationships who are prevented from applying or accessing the documents they need to do so, and those who lack the physical or mental capacity to apply. Seraphus solicitors have argued that this represents a restrictive approach, and that “reasonable grounds” should include situations where citizens were unaware of the need to apply to the EUSS and where someone failed to apply based on a mistaken belief that they were not required to apply.168 There is evidence that people are still not aware that they have to apply. A recent survey of migrant works in Fenland found that 40% of those surveyed, and who intended to stay in the UK beyond the deadline, were unaware of the EU Settlement Scheme.169

105.Luke Piper, from the3million, said:

I would like to know in what situations it is not reasonable for somebody to apply after the deadline. We have focused a lot on what would be reasonable, but I would be very interested to know when it would not be reasonable for people to apply.170

Luke Piper explained the consequences of applying after the deadline:

The consequences for not applying in time are quite significant. [ … ] if you do not apply by the deadline, the rights you had before will disappear. If you do not have new rights, you are essentially living in the UK unlawfully, which means you cannot work or access housing, the NHS and other vital services until you acquire a status.171

Furthermore, in any time gap from deadline to application, “these rights will be lost until EUSS status is approved”.172

106.Adrian Berry, Chair of the Immigration Law Practitioners Association (ILPA), has suggested that there should be a “benevolent regime” for those applicants who miss the deadline. He told the Immigration and Social Security Coordination Bill Public Bill Committee that “You apply late; they grant it. It is that simple. Why would you not do that? Somebody wants to regularise their status and they have withdrawal agreement rights—why muck around?”173

107.When an application is made, the applicant should receive a ‘certificate of application’, providing proof that the application is in the system and pending a decision. Article 18 of the Withdrawal Agreement states that the certificate of application shall be issued immediately. This is important to provide reassurance to the applicant, so they can demonstrate their situation to prospective employers or anyone else asking for their status, and even more so if the application is near the deadline and they do not receive a decision until after the deadline. Luke Piper explained that:

It is really important that these certificates are issued to people who have applied, particularly as we get closer to the deadline, because there may be a delay and they will need to prove it. Both in my personal practice and in the reports that have been given to me, we have seen considerable delays in those certificates being issued. They are not being issued immediately.174

The certificates are issued digitally.175

108.During Report stage of the Immigration and Social Security Coordination Bill in the House of Lords, Baroness Williams of Trafford, Minister of State at the Home Office, said:

Apart from asking for the reason for missing the deadline, the application process will be the same; we will consider the application in exactly the same way as we do now, in line with the immigration rules for the EU settlement scheme. A person with reasonable grounds for missing the deadline, who subsequently applies for and obtains status under the scheme, will enjoy the same rights from the time they are granted status as someone who applied to the scheme before the deadline. However, they will not have those rights in the period after the missed deadline and before they are granted status, which is why we are encouraging and supporting people to apply as soon as possible.176

109.It is vitally important the Government publish the guidance for case workers on late applications. The Home Secretary said she would do so in April 2020. We hope that the default approach would remain to look for reasons to grant status rather than not grant status.

110.The risk of refusing a large number of applications after the deadline, where the applicant would pass all the criteria and be granted status if they had applied one month earlier, would simply create a group of people living in the UK unlawfully. This would be unacceptable for UK nationals living in the EU and we urge Ministers not to apply an unduly restrictive approach in the UK.

111.The Home Office must prepare for the possible increase in applications leading up to the deadline and prepare accordingly. This includes ensuring that certificates of application are sent out promptly, so that people are not put in a no man’s land where they are unsure of their position and unable to explain their status until they receive a decision.

Grant Funding Support

112.In April 2019, the Home Secretary announced that £9 million of funding would be available to organisations across the UK to provide practical support and inform vulnerable individuals about the need to apply for settled status and support them to complete their application for Settled Status.177 In March 2020, the Home Office announced a further £8 million of funding for the 2020–2021 financial year.178

113.Barbara Drozdowicz, whose Eastern European Resource Centre was one of the organisations that had benefitted from the scheme, said the scheme has been “fundamental in supporting people [ … ] we would not be able as a community sector to support our members and community members [ … ] without the support provided by the scheme.”179 As we near the deadline, the later applications are likely to include more complex cases, possibly requiring complex immigration advice, and therefore need to continue funding of support groups,180 including those supported by the Home Office Grant Funded Organisations.181

114.The Home Office’s grant funding to organisations providing support and advice to EU citizens has been crucial in reaching out to a wide range of communities and individuals in particular circumstances. If there is an increase in applications leading up to the 30 June 2021, particularly among those with complex cases, then such organisations are going to need continued support beyond the end of this financial year. The Government should consider how it could target support to organisations, including but not solely the Grant Funded Organisations, that are able to provide the necessary legal advice. The Government should provide grant funding up to and beyond the deadline of 30 June 2021 and make clear that it will do so in good time before the end of the current financial year.

93 In this Report we use EU citizens to include those from the EEA countries Norway, Iceland, Liechtenstein, and Switzerland

99 The ONS survey does not include the majority of people living in communal establishments (such as care homes, hostels and halls of residence), absent from a household for more than six months, or staying in the UK on a shorter-term basis.

101 Q523

102 Q530

103 Q528

104 Q523

105 Home Office, EU Settlement Scheme quarterly statistics June 2020, published 27 August 2020

106 Home Office, EU Settlement Scheme statistics, 8 October 2020

108 Home Office, EU Settlement Scheme statistics, 8 October 2020

109 Home Office, EU Settlement Scheme quarterly statistics June 2020, published 27 August 2020

111 Home Office, EU Settlement Scheme quarterly statistics June 2020, published 27 August 2020

112 Q523 EUSS allows for more than one application and is free. This is unusual for immigration applications in the UK where the fees act as a disincentive to more than one application. Seraphus (FRE0010)

113 Home Office, EU Settlement Scheme statistics, 8 October 2020

114 Home Office, EU Settlement Scheme quarterly statistics, as of June 2020, Published 27 August 2020

116 Home Office, EU Settlement Scheme quarterly statistics, as of June 2020, Published 27 August 2020

117 Home Office, EU Settlement Scheme quarterly statistics, as of June 2020, Published 27 August 2020

118 Derivative rights applicants are applicants who do not qualify for a right of residence under the Free Movement Directive but may qualify for a right to reside in the UK derived from other EU law, i.e. under one of the following routes: Chen, Ibrahim & Teixeira, Lounes & Surinder Singh, and Zambrano. See also Seraphus (FRE0010)

121 Applications received Lounes & Surinder Singh: 3,480, Zambrano: 2,890, Chen: 700, and Ibrahim & Teixeira: 130.

122 Professor Catherine Barnard and Fiona Costello, EU Nationals and non-EU family members, 4 Sept 2020. See also Q553

123 Home Office, EU Settlement Scheme: Statement of Intent, 21 June 2018

124 Q538

125 Q518, Q539

127 Q518

128 See the Eighth Report of the Exiting the European Union Committee, The progress of the UK’s negotiations on EU withdrawal: the rights of UK and EU citizens, Session 2017–19, HC 1439, paras 46–49, and para 76

130 Public Law Project, Digital Immigration Status, A Monitoring Framework, September 2020

133 Q519

135 Q539

136 Q519

137 Q519

138 Q538

139 Q538

140 Q519

141 Home Office, EU Settlement Scheme statistics, 8 October 2020

142 Q540. Independent Chief Inspector of Borders and Immigration, An inspection of the EU Settlement Scheme (April 2019 to August 2019), February 2020, Figure 16

143 Q540, Independent Chief Inspector of Borders and Immigration, An Inspection of the EU Settlement Scheme (April 2019 to August 2019), February 2020, Figure 16

145 Q540

146 Q528. Independent Chief Inspector of Borders and Immigration, An inspection of the EU Settlement Scheme (April 2019 to August 2019), February 2020

147 Q541. See also comparable situation for UK in the EU Q500

152 Q541

154 Q542

157 Seraphus (FRE0010)

159 Home Office, EU Settlement Scheme quarterly statistics, as of June 2020, Published 27 August 2020

161 Q535

162 Q535

164 Q537

165 Q537

167 Seraphus (FRE0010)

168 Seraphus (FRE0010)

170 Q558

171 Q537

172 Seraphus (FRE0010)

173 Immigration and Social Security Coordination Bill Public Bill Committee, 9 June 2020, col 52

174 Q556

175 Q557

176 HL Deb 30 Sept 2020, cols 243–244 [Baroness Williams of Trafford]

179 Q520

180 See Commons Library research briefing, Citizens’ rights provisions in the European Union (Withdrawal Agreement) Bill 2019–20, 3 January 2020, para 2.5

181 Seraphus (FRE0010)

Published: 20 October 2020