European Migration

 

Apply for a UK residence card

You can apply for a residence card if you’re from outside the European Economic Area (EEA) and living with a European partner or family member. You don’t need a residence card to live in the UK, but it can help you re-enter the country more quickly and easily if you travel abroad show employers you’re allowed to work in the UK, help prove you qualify for certain benefits and services. You should instead apply for a derivative right of residence card if you’re the carer of an EEA citizen, the carer’s child, or the child of an EEA worker and currently in education. A residence card can last up to 5 years. After 5 years, you can apply for a permanent residence card. It costs £55 for each person included in an application.

There are also other ways you may be eligible for a residence card, eg if you have a ‘retained right of residence’ or as a ‘Surinder Singh’ case.

Family members of EEA citizens

To be eligible you must be related to an EEA citizen as their spouse or civil partner, child, or their spouse or civil partner’s child, and less than 21 years old, unmarried partner and can show that you’re in a lasting relationship with them or a ‘dependent’ family.

Dependent family

You can apply as a ‘dependant’ of an EEA family member if you either are financially dependent on them (you rely on them to pay for your essential needs), have a serious health condition and rely on them to care for you. Dependants must be family of the EEA citizen, or their spouse or civil partner, and can be parents or grandparents, children over 21 years old ,extended family members (brothers, sisters, aunts, uncles, cousins, nephews and nieces).Family members who are adopted under an adoption order that is recognised in UK law are regarded the same as natural family.

Family members who are students

Different rules apply if you’re a family member of an EEA citizen who’s a student. In this case, you can only get a residence card if you’re their child, or their spouse or civil partner’s child, and either under 21 years old or over 21 years old and dependent on them.

Retained rights of residence

You can also apply for a residence card if you have a ‘retained right of residence’, eg:

• your marriage or civil partnership to an EEA citizen has ended (with a divorce, annulment or dissolution)
• your EEA family member has died or left the country
• you’re the child of an EEA citizen who has died or left the UK, or the child of their spouse or civil partner, or former spouse or civil partner
• you’re the non-EEA parent, or former partner of an EEA national with custody of a child who has a right to reside in the UK
Surinder Singh cases
You may be able to apply for a residence card as a ‘Surinder Singh’ case.
To be eligible, you must be a citizen of a country outside the EEA and:
• the married partner, civil partner or child of a UK citizen
• have lived with them in another EEA country where they worked or were self-employed before returning to the UK
• be able to show that your UK sponsor based their ‘centre of life’ in the EEA country in which you both were resident before returning to the UK

You can prove your UK sponsor genuinely moved to another EEA country with proof of their address, how long they lived there and any other related information - eg if they bought a house, proof of their integration in the EEA country where they lived - eg whether they speak the language, have any children born there or were involved with the local community.

Apply for a derivative residence card

You may be able to apply for a derivative residence card if you’re the primary carer of someone who has the right to live in the UK or the primary carer’s child. You can also apply as the child of an European Economic Area (EEA) worker if you’re at school in the UK.A derivative residence card proves you have the right to live in the UK. You can only apply for a derivative residence card if you’re already living in the UK - you should apply for an EEA family permit instead if you’re applying from outside the UK.

You don’t have to get a derivative residence card, but it can help you re-enter the country quicker when you come back from abroad, show employers you’re allowed to work in the UK, show relevant authorities, your local council for example, that you’re allowed to live in the UK. The cost to apply is £55. You can continue living in the UK for as long as you’re eligible - eg, the person you’re caring for will need to still be living in the UK, or in school or university. You can’t count time spent in the UK with a derivative right of residence toward applying for permanent residence in the UK. Whether you can apply depends on where you’re from, the situation of the person you care for or are the child of & your relationship to them.

You’re from outside the EEA and a primary carer

You can apply if you’re from outside the European Economic Area (EEA)and the primary carer of one of the following:

• a British child who would have to leave the EEA with you if you left
• an EEA child who is financially independent and has full health insurance in the UK, and who would have to leave the EEA with you if you left
• a British dependent adult
• the child of an EEA worker who is currently at school or university and who would have to leave the EEA with you if you left, and who meets the criteria below

Children of EEA workers or former workers and currently in education in the UK
You can apply as the child of an EEA worker or former worker if all of the following apply:
• you’re currently in education in the UK
• you were in the UK when your EEA national parent was working in the UK
• you were in education when your EEA national parent was in the UK

Children of primary carers

You can also apply as the child of a primary carer who has a derivative right of residence.
You must be under 18 years of age to be eligible.

You’re an EEA national

You can also apply if you’re an EEA national and both of the following:
• the primary carer of a child in the UK
• not working, studying or able to support yourself independently

Apply for an EEA family permit

vYou can apply for an EEA family permit to accompany your family or partner to the UK (or join them after they’ve arrived) if the person you’ll be accompanying or joining is from the European Economic Area (EEA) but not the UK or you’re from outside the EEA. You can apply as the wife, husband, civil or unmarried partner, child, grandchild, parent or grandparent of the person you’ll be joining in the UK, a dependent extended family member - eg unmarried partner, brother, sister or cousin. You can also apply for an EEA family permit if you’re the main carer of a British citizen, a financially self-sufficient child who is an EEA national, a child of an EEA national who was a worker in the UK.

You should apply for a visa to join your family member instead if your family member is a British citizen (unless you’re their carer).You doesn’t need to apply if you hold a valid residence card or permanent residence card issued in the UK. You must get your permit before travelling to the UK. An EEA family permit is valid for six months. You can leave and enter the UK as many times as you need within that time. You can stay for longer than 6 months if you’re related to an EEA national as their spouse or civil partner, child or grandchild, or their spouse or civil partner’s child or grandchild, and under 21 years old, dependent child or grandchild, or their spouse or civil partner’s child or grandchild, and over 21 years old or dependent parent or grandparent, or their spouse or civil partner’s parent or grandparent. Your EEA family member must be working, a jobseeker, self-employed, studying, self-sufficient or have a permanent right of residence. You must apply for a UK residence card or leave the UK after your EEA family permit ends if you’re related to your sponsor in any other way. An EEA family permit is free.

Prove you have right of abode in the UK

Right of abode means you’re allowed to live or work in the UK without any immigration restrictions, so you won’t need a visa to come to the UK or there’s no limit on the length of time you can spend in the country. All British citizens automatically have right of abode in the UK. Some Commonwealth citizens may also have right of abode. You can prove you have right of abode if you have a UK passport describing you as a British citizen or British subject with right of abode. Otherwise you’ll need to apply for a ‘certificate of entitlement’.

Commonwealth citizens

You may have right of abode in the UK either because of your parents or because you were married.

Parents

You have right of abode if the following apply one of your parents was born in the UK and a citizen of the United Kingdom and colonies when you were born or adopted, you were a Commonwealth citizen on 31 December 1982 & you didn’t stop being a Commonwealth citizen (even temporarily) at any point after 31 December 1982.

Marriage

You can only get right to abode through marriage if you’re a female Commonwealth citizen and you are or were married to someone with right to abode. You must also have been married to them before 1 January 1983 not stopped being a Commonwealth citizen (even temporarily) at any point after 31 December 1982, You won’t have right of abode if you’re a woman and the person you were married to has another living wife or widow who is in the UK, or has been in the UK at any time since her marriage (unless they entered the country illegally, as a visitor or with temporary permission to stay) & has been given a certificate of entitlement to right of abode or permission to enter the UK because of her marriage.

However, you may still have right of abode if either:

• you entered the UK as a wife before 1 August 1988, even if other wives of the same man are in the UK
• you’ve been in the UK at any time since your marriage and at that time were that man’s only wife to have entered the UK or have been given permission to do so.

Prove your right to live in the UK as an EU citizen

You can apply for a registration certificate if you’re a citizen of a European Economic Area (EEA) country and want to prove your right to live in the UK. You don’t need a registration certificate, but it can make it easier to claim certain benefits and services & can be used to support a family member’s application for an EEA family permit or residence card. You must be working, studying or able to support yourself independently to apply. The EEA includes all EU states plus Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway and, for immigration purposes, Switzerland. The fees are £55 per applicant. You can also use our premium one day service for this application.

Getting permanent residence

You can apply for a permanent residence card if you’ve lived in the UK for 5 years as a ‘qualified person’ (ie you’ve been working, studying or supporting yourself independently). This will prove your right to live in the UK permanently. You can also apply if you’re the family member of a ‘qualified person’ and you’ve been in the UK for 5 years.

Working in the UK as a Croatian national

You may need to apply for a registration certificate to be allowed to work in the UK. The type of registration certificate you may need will depend on whether you need permission to work in the UK and what you’ll be doing.
You must be working, self-employed, studying or able to support yourself to stay in the UK longer than 3 months .You may need to apply for a purple registration certificate to be able to work. A licensed UK employer must sponsor you first. You can apply for a purple registration certificate before you come to the UK.
You won’t need to be sponsored or apply for a purple registration certificate - but you’ll still need to apply for a blue registration certificate to prove your right to work in the UK. You’ll need to be in the UK to apply. You won’t need to be sponsored or apply for a purple registration certificate if you have an endorsement from an approved organisation (eg the Arts Council or Royal Academy).You’ll still need to apply for a blue registration certificate to prove your right to work in the UK. You don’t need permission to work for yourself. You can choose to apply for a yellow registration certificate to prove your right to work for yourself. You’ll need to be in the UK to apply.

You’ll need to apply for a yellow registration certificate if you want to work while you study. You’ll need to be in the UK to apply. Your family members can also work in the UK if they’re eligible.