EEA Permanent Residence Card – Application and Requirements
EEA Permanent Residence (ILR)
The UK will be leaving the European Union at some point in 2019. This has many EEA nationals who currently call the UK home applying for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR). EEA permanent residence has a variety of requirements, of which not everyone will meet prior to Brexit. For those who don’t meet the current requirements for temporary or permanent residency, an alternate and yet to be determined option will be made available. Here are the answers to some of the common ILR questions pertaining to the current requirements.
You Must Have Lived In The UK For At Least 5 Years
Our goal at Gulbenkian Andonian Solicitors name is to help you or your loved one identify the most logical path to citizenship. While permanent residency is the goal, there is no need to apply if you have not lived in the country on a valid visa for at least 5 years, in some cases for 10 or 14 years. This includes spouses, family members, investors, business owners, and anyone with a work permit. While it may be frustrating, and even a bit nerve-wracking to hear—you may need to wait for the release of the post-Brexit requirements.
If you have lived here for the required timeframe we can move forward with gathering the documents, you will need to complete your EEA permanent residence application. You drastically increase your odds for approval if we are part of your application process.
ILR Is Not Naturalisation
ILR entitles you to live in the UK for as long as you wish and come and go for standard holidays and business trips. However, if you leave the country for over 48 consecutive months—your IRL may be revoked. While ILR is not naturalisation, it can be one step on your path to naturalisation. You must have your ILR for at least 1 year before you can apply for naturalisation. We can also assist with this process.
You Must Prove Your Dedication To Be A Permanent Resident
To qualify for your EEA permanent residence card, you must not only have a desire to remain in the UK, but you must prove your dedication the UK. You must prove that it is your genuine home, that you have sufficient knowledge about life and culture, and sufficient knowledge of the UK. We will work with you or your family member to fill in any gaps in knowledge that may be missing. There are a few exceptions to the knowledge and language proficiency. For example, children under the age of 18 or adults over the age of 65. There are also exceptions for qualified dependants with health and medical conditions.
ILR For Refugees And Humanitarian Protection
If you are in the UK as a refugee or person with humanitarian protection from any country, even countries outside of the EEA, you must be in the country at least 5 years before you can apply for your ILR. If your spouse or children are already in the country with you as qualified dependants, they can apply for permanent residence too. If your family was formed before you left the country (spouse, civil partner, and children) can apply to be reunited with you under your asylum protection. Qualified extended family and family formed after your asylum was approved can apply for a family visa. If you wish, you can each explore the most logical path to naturalisation.
Immigration Until Brexit
There is still not a set date as to when the UK will leave the EU, but sometime on or after March of 2019. It is expected that at some point in 2018 the alternate path to temporary and permanent residency will be shared. Up until the official date of Brexit, current residency and rights will be upheld. While unclear, there will be an alternate path to residency that is expected to provide those who don’t qualify with ILR an opportunity to stay. In the meantime, it is worth talking with a member of Gulbenkian Andonian Solicitors to determine if you have any other residency options. At the very least, reach out as soon as the new criteria is shared—so that we can get to work on your new application.
While March of 2019 is still a full year away, immigration offices are being flooded with visa applications for current and new EEA residency. We encourage a proactive approach to the impending changes as processing a ILR for EEA nationals is likely to longer than customary. Reach out to Gulbenkian Andonian Solicitors today so that we can get started.