EEA Family Application

You can apply for a European Economic Area (EEA) family permit to come to the UK if you are from outside the EEA or the family member or ‘extended’ family member of an EEA national. Brexit has not affected these rules for the time being. A new Scheme has been introduced called the EU Settlement Scheme (EUSS). As a result, the EUSS family permit operates alongside the EEA family permit. Information on this is below.

The EEA citizen you are joining must either be in the UK already or be travelling with you to the UK within 6 months of the date of your application.

If the EEA citizen has been in the UK for more than 3 months, they must either be a ‘qualified person’ (working, looking for work, self-employed, studying or self-sufficient) or have a permanent right of residence.

To qualify as a “family member”, you must be the EEA citizen’s spouse or civil partner, or related to them (or their spouse or civil partner) as their:
• child or grandchild under 21 years old, or dependent child or grandchild of any age
• dependent parent or grandparent
• ‘extended’ family member’, eg brother, sister, aunt, uncle, cousin, nephew or niece. You must be able to show that you’re dependent on the EEA citizen or are a member of their household, or have a serious health condition and rely on them to care for you.

You can also apply as an unmarried partner if you can show that you’re in a lasting relationship with the EEA national.

Note this definition “family member” provides much greater rights to a non EEA citizen wanting to join an EEA citizen in the UK than to a non EEA person wanting to come to the UK to join a UK citizen!

An EEA family permit is valid for 6 months. You can leave and enter the UK as many times as you like within that time. You can apply for a residence card to stay in the UK after the 6 months which is valid for 5 years and a permanent residence card once you have completed the full 5 year period.

EEA nationals can similarly apply for a Registration Certificate to confirm their right to remain here as a qualified person and permanent residence card if they have lived here for 5 years as a qualified person. The latter is now required for those wishing to apply for British Citizenship. A list of fees payable for immigration services for individuals is set out here.

The EU Settlement Scheme allows qualifying nationals to continue their residence in the United Kingdom, after the UK leaves the EU. Under the new Scheme, non-EEA Nationals may accompany their EEA nationals family members to the UK, or join them in the UK, provided:

the non-EEA National is the close family member of an EEA (or Swiss national);

the EEA national has pre-settled status or settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme;

the EEA national is already in the UK, or will be travelling with you to the UK within 6 months of the date of your application.

Please contact us.