Detailed guide: Status of EU nationals in the UK: what you need to know

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This page will be updated with the latest information about the status of European Union (EU) nationals in the UK (see note 1) as the EU negotiations progress.

Important information

You do not need to do anything as a result of Article 50 being triggered. There will be no change to the rights and status of EU nationals living in the UK while the UK remains in the EU.

Under EU law you don’t need a document to confirm your residence status in the UK (see note 2).

If you’re planning to apply for a document just to confirm your status, you can sign up for email alerts instead.

These email updates will let you know about developments that might affect you, including the steps that you may need to take to confirm your status in the UK after we leave the EU.

The UK remains a full member of the EU until we exit the EU. All the rights and obligations of EU membership remain in place until then.

The Prime Minister was clear in her letter to the President of the European Council that we should seek an early agreement on the rights of UK nationals in the EU, and EU nationals in the UK, on a reciprocal basis. This is a priority issue for the forthcoming negotiations and as the Prime Minister has emphasised, we will always put the interests of citizens first.

Once we have an agreement with the EU, further information will be published about the status of EU nationals in the UK after we leave the EU and the next steps for EU nationals in the UK.

More information on what UK nationals travelling and living in Europe need to know is available.

NOTES

(1) All references to EU nationals in this guidance also cover the European Economic Area (EEA) and Swiss nationals.

(2) You will still need a document to prove your status if you want to apply for British citizenship or if you’re an extended family member of an EU national.

EU nationals who have lived in the UK for more than 5 years

You do not need to do anything as a result of Article 50 being triggered.

Permanent residence status is a right that EU nationals can get under EU law. This will not change while the UK is part of the EU.

More information about your right to live in the UK is available on GOV.UK.

EU nationals who have lived in the UK for less than 5 years

You do not need to do anything as a result of Article 50 being triggered. There will be no change to the rights and status of EU nationals living in the UK while the UK remains in the EU.

More information about your right to live in the UK is available on GOV.UK.

EU nationals who are planning to visit or live in the UK

EU nationals continue to have a right to enter and live in the UK. There will be no change to the rights and status of EU nationals living in the UK while the UK remains in the EU.

Non-EU family members of EU nationals

There will be no change to the rights and status of non-EU family members of EU nationals while the UK remains in the EU. If you’re from the EU but your family member isn’t, they continue to have a right to live in the UK. More information is available on GOV.UK:

Extended family members of EU nationals

There will be no change to the rights and status of extended family members of EU nationals while the UK remains in the EU. More information about bringing extended family members to the UK is available.

Irish nationals

Irish nationals continue to have separate rights which allow them to be treated in the same way as British nationals in most circumstances.

Croatian nationals

There will be no change to the rights and status of Croatian nationals while the UK remains in the EU. It continues to be the case that Croatian nationals might need to apply for a registration certificate to be allowed to work in the UK.

Removing EU nationals from the UK

It continues to be the case that EU nationals can only be removed from the UK if they:

  • are considered to pose a genuine, present and sufficiently serious threat to the public
  • aren’t lawfully resident or are abusing their EU free movement rights

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