EU Nationals and Family
Under UK immigration laws, if you are a national of the European Economic Area (EEA) or Switzerland, then you have the legal right to live in the UK for up to three months. You have the right to stay for longer if you are one of the following:
- a worker
- a jobseeker
- a student
- self-sufficient, meaning that you have enough funds to support yourself without becoming a burden on the state.
After you have resided in the UK for five years exercising your rights as an EEA national, you will get the right to reside here permanently. One year after this, you may be able to apply for British citizenship.
You do not need to make any application to the Home Office to be here legally as an EEA national. However, we can help you to apply for a registration card or a document certifying permanent residence as evidence of your right to live here.
If you are a Bulgarian or Romanian national, there are limits to the types of work that you can do here; you will need a work permit which your employer must apply for. We can advise you about your rights.
You are also entitled to live and work here under immigration laws of the UK if you are a family member of an EEA national exercising their rights here. You must be related to an EEA national in one of the following ways:
- their husband, wife or civil partner;
- their child, and under the age of 21;
- their husband, wife or civil partner’s child and under the age of 21;
- their child aged 21 or over and dependent upon them;
- their husband, wife or civil partner’s child aged 21 or over and dependent on them;
- their parent, grandparent or great-grandparent who is financially dependent on them;
- their husband, wife or civil partner’s parent, grandparent or great-grandparent who is financially dependent on them.
You may also be able to come to the UK if you are related to an EEA national in one of the following ways:
- their unmarried partner in a durable relationship;
- other dependent family members who do not come into the categories above.
To come to the UK, you will need to apply for an EEA family permit, which is a visa valid for six months.
Once you are in the UK, you do not need to make any applications to the Home Office. However, it may be difficult to prove to potential employers that you are here legally. You can therefore apply for a residence card, which is put in your passport. Once you have been here for five years you may acquire the right of permanent residence.
We are able to help you with making applications as the family member of an EEA national.
DIVORCE AND DEATH
If you are in the UK and you are now divorced from your EEA family member, or they have died, then you may ‘retain the right of residence’, meaning that you can still live in the UK. Please contact us for further information.