17 May EU Settlement Scheme does not work
A Danish citizen, and his Turkish wife, were blocked from taking a flight from Turkey to the UK where they reside.
On 7 May 2019, British Airways refused the non-EEA migrant permission to board the plane as she did not travel with a biometric card or other right paperwork.
To be noted that the Turkish national has been living in the UK for six years. However, when she applied for a ‘settled’ status on 9 April 2019, with just a week before her flight, the Home Office told her she had been “downgraded” to pre-settled status for citizen in the country fewer than five years.
Non-EU spouses are entitled to travel and reside with their EU family member in another member state under EU freedom of movement laws. However, under the UK’s post-Brexit plans, EU citizens and their family members must apply for ‘settled’ or ‘pre-settled’ status.
In this case, the migrant took a copy of their marriage certificate in order to prove her rights.
Non-visa nationals can board flights and are defacto “re-admitted at the border” but airlines often refuse other non-EU nationals even if they have the required proof of the status as an EU family member.
In conclusion, the Home Office should work more closely with the airlines and ensure that all carriers have clear lines of communication with UK immigration for getting pre-boarding clearance and help travellers on their journeys in these circumstances.
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