EU states looking to impose settled status regulations on UK expats

EU states looking to impose settled status regulations on UK expats

EU states looking to impose settled status regulations on UK expats

One third or more of EU member states are considering making UK expats in their countries apply for ‘settled status’ in the same way as the British plan for EU nationals in the UK.

According to the Guardian newspaper, the information came after a technical seminar on post-Brexit registration held by EU officials last Friday, with the paper also reporting the French representative declined to give his government’s view on the issue. The European Commission is so far unable to comment on the report or confirm the information as correct.

The ‘settled status’ issue marks a different approach as it’s requesting a new right, whereas the current process of obtaining a French carte de sejour is based on an expat applicant’s legal right as an EU citizen living legally in a member state. The final decision on the issue is likely to affect those now planning emigration to an EU state before Brexit is finalised as well as those already in residence.

As Britain now requires a new status for its EU expats, the draft exit agreement permits other EU states to reciprocate should they so wish, with around 10 considering copying the British process and the majority of the remainder believing it’s easier to stay with existing procedures. No indication was given as to whether a unified approach to the issue across the 27 EU member states would be forthcoming. Campaign groups fighting for UK expats’ rights believe it’s a better idea to keep the declaratory system now in place as it states there is a right rather than begging for one.

Whichever system is finally decided on by the French government, it’s very unlikely UK expats living in France will be able to live legally without any form of carte de sejour, as at present all non-EU, Swiss or EEA nationals as well as non-French citizens must have one in order to prove their right to remain. As a result, the remaining EU member states will need to determine what type of card is necessary for post-Brexit UK expats in Europe. According to sources, it’s too early to speculate, adding all member states wish for an orderly, smooth solution to the rights issue.

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