EEA nationals or their family members who have resided in the UK under the European Regulations for a continuous period of 5 years are deemed to acquire permanent residence automatically.
In the past, there has been no real need for EEA nationals or their family members to make an application for a document or card confirming their permanent residence. However, this could change in the future.
Since 12 November 2015, EEA nationals wishing to apply for British nationality must be able to produce a document that confirms their permanent residence status in the UK. This is perhaps one of the reasons why the Home Office has seen a surge in these types of applications.
Permanent Residence – Eligibility Criteria
The eligibility criteria for permanent residence is generally quite simple; if you are an EEA national you must demonstrate that you have been residing in the UK for a continuous period of 5 years and during this time you were a Qualified Person.
If you are the family member of an EEA national, you must demonstrate your EEA national family member was exercising his/her Treaty Rights during the 5 year period which you wish to rely on.
Applicants should bear in mind that continuity of residence can be broken if you have been absent from the UK for 6 months or more in any single 12 month period.
If you would like to consider whether you meet the eligibility criteria, please contact us today and arrange a meeting with a member of our business immigration team.
The Home Office’s fee for permanent residence applications is set at £65. EEA nationals have the option of applying online and also the option of using the European Passport Return Service.
Once you have made your application, the Home Office are required to process it as soon as possible and in any event within 6 months. Following the referendum, we have found that applications are taking longer than normal to process.
How can you help?
Our business immigration solicitors often consult with clients who are confident they meet the eligibility criteria but are unable to produce the relevant evidence (perhaps due to poor record keeping) or there are gaps where they think they haven’t been exercising their free movement rights.
We understand every case is different, which is why, if instructed, our immigration solicitors can help you prepare your application and make detailed representations in support giving you the best chance of success.
Our expert solicitors who are based in London and Reading, are fully authorised by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) and are available to consult with you in person at our offices, or via Skype or telephone. To get in touch with our business immigration team, please use the Contact Form opposite or if you prefer, call or email us.