EU Citizens

Brexit - advice for EU citizens

There are around 20,000 EU citizens living in Islington and they play a valuable role in our community. Islington Council has been taking steps to prepare for Brexit and we will do what we can to support residents who may be affected so they can continue to live and work here.

Three-quarters of our residents voted to remain in the EU. We are proud of our diverse community and we are stronger when we stand together.

Applying to stay in the UK or applying for settled status

If you are an EU, EEA or Swiss citizen you will need to apply for settled status to continue living and working here once the UK leaves the EU. The rights of Irish citizens remain unaffected by Brexit.

You will need to apply through GOV.UK. Some EU nationals and their family members may be able to apply now, if not you will be able to apply when the scheme fully opens on 30 March 2019.

If you are a family member whose status in the UK is reliant on the free movement rights of an EU, EEA or Swiss citizen, you will also need to apply.

What is settled status? How do you qualify?

If you are granted settled or pre-settled status you will be able to stay in London and live your life as you do now. The government has said that you will have the same access to benefits, public services and healthcare.

You may qualify for settled status (indefinite leave to remain) if you have lived in the UK for five years. If you have lived in the UK for less than five years you may qualify for pre-settled status (limited leave to remain).

When you will need to apply

You have plenty of time to apply, whether the UK leaves the EU with a deal or not. The timeframe depends on the final arrangements that are agreed between the EU and UK governments:

  • If a deal is agreed, then EU, EEA and Swiss nationals living in the UK by 31 December 2020 will have until 30 June 2021 to apply
  • In the event of a ‘no deal’ situation, EU, EEA and Swiss nationals living in the UK by 29 March 2019 will have until 31 December 2020 to apply

Information and guidance

As the UK’s exit from the EU is currently being negotiated by the government, information about Brexit is constantly changing. This makes it difficult for the council to advise residents on the impact it will have on them and their families. For the most up to date information about Brexit visit the government website GOV.UK. You can also sign up for email alerts.

Other guidance

European Commission
Mayor of London - EU Londoners hub
EU Citizens Rights – search for public information events in London
Citizens Advice
UK Citizenship for EU Nationals

Advice and help with applying

If you need access to a computer or help to get online, you can visit any of Islington’s libraries. Computers and wi-fi access are available for free at all and library staff are on hand to offer help to get online or use online services. You can also book a longer 121 session if needed.

For additional help with the online application or if you don’t have an Android device, the Home Office has set up the following services:

  • EU Settlement Resolution Centre helpline if you need information or support when making your application. There may be a charge for calls. For details of how to contact the helpline visit GOV.UK
  • ID document scanners are available at Camden Council, Hackney Council and Southwark Council if you do not have a suitable Android device. A small fee may be charged. For details of how to book or where to go visit GOV.UK
  • Assisted Digital Support is available over the phone, at a local centre or in your home if you do not have the appropriate access, skills or confidence to complete the form. To find out more visit GOV.UK

If you need specialist legal advice if you are unsure if you qualify or need advice about your immigration options you can contact an immigration adviser:

Information for businesses

If you run a business in Islington – and employ a number of people from EU countries or import and export goods and supplies - you will need to prepare for change.
For the latest information on how the EU may affect your business and what you need to do to get ready visit GOV.UK

Other guidance

Growth hub Brexit

FSB Brexit

British Chambers of Commerce Brexit

No place for hate in Islington

There is some concern that religious, racist and xenophobic hate crime will increase when the UK leaves the EU. Hate is not welcome in Islington and we will take action with the police against those responsible for disrupting our strong community. We believe everyone deserves to live free of fear and abuse.

If you experience or witness any form of hate crime please report it to the police at Report it, 101 (999 in an emergency) or to Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

Say no to hate crime by signing our anti-hate crime pledge on our website.

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