The latest Home Office figures (gathered up until the end of August 2019) suggest that over 1.5 million European nationals currently living in UK have applied for the EU Settlement Scheme. As there are an estimated three million EU citizens currently living here, it would appear 1.5 million have yet to make an application.
Completed applications are usually being processed within four days, with applicants who have lived in the UK for five years or more receiving settled status (60% of those who have applied), whereas those who have been here for less than five years (approximately 40% of those who have applied) are being issued with pre-settled status.
In addition, the figures also suggest that in the region of 67,000 applications were received from eligible non-EU nationals.
Regardless of whether there is a deal or a no deal situation, EU citizens and their family members will have until at least 31 December 2020 to apply.
New provisions have been introduced to enable a non-EEA citizen family member granted EUSS status, whose biometric residence card is then lost or stolen overseas, to apply free of charge for an EUSS travel permit to enable them to travel to the UK, where they can apply for a replacement biometric residence card.
The EUSS will continue to be available until 29 March 2022 in the event of both “Deal” and “No Deal”, for existing close family members of UK nationals (when the relationship existed on exit day) who are returning with them from the EEA or Switzerland if they have lived in Europe while the UK National exercised their free movement rights.
Future spouses, civil partners and durable partners (where the relationship was established after exit), and other dependent relatives of a UK national, returning with them from the EEA or Switzerland having lived there together while the UK national exercised their free movement rights, will have access to the EU Settlement scheme until 31 December 2020 in both deal and no deal scenarios.