29 Jun How to make a permanent residence application in the UK?
An EU citizen who is exercising Treaty Rights in the UK as a worker, self-employed person, self-sufficient person or student for five continuous years might be eligible for a permanent residence card (PR). His/her family members might also apply for PR after five years of residence in the UK. Please note that under the current 2006 EEA Regulations, the right of permanent residence is acquired automatically or defacto in line with the Citizens’ Directive and as a result, a permanent residence card merely acts as confirmation of this right. However, as of November 2015, a PR card is a mandatory document to be naturalized as a British Citizen and it must have been held for 12 months.
There are several important criteria to be met when lodging an EEA (PR) application. Thus, it is vital to get the process right the first time around, since the UKVI can take up to 6 months to approve the application. The UKVI charges £65 but, there is also no fast track service since the bundle can only be submitted by post and not at the Public Enquiry Office. Unlike most visa categories listed in the Immigration Rules, there is no Life in the UK test or English language requirement to qualify for PR. An applicant should not have accumulated absences exceeding 180 days per year, during the qualifying five-year period, but certain exceptions such as military service, employment or maternity are acceptable. In addition, all “qualifying activities” listed under Regulation 4 can be combined to acquire permanent residence. However, please note that a student and a self-sufficient person must have held comprehensive sickness insurance during the entire 5 years period. When it comes to “Comprehensive Sickness insurance”, there is precise definition of this term. However, it is evident that wording “comprehensive” refers to the level of insurance cover to be acquired and does not include cash-back health schemes, travel insurance policies or access to the UK’s NHS.
If you are currently concerned about applying for permanent residence for yourself or your family members in the UK, please feel free to contact us at [email protected] for further advice.