To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, if the Government will bring forward legislation to grant automatic settled status to (a) all EU nationals and (b) non-EU family members resident in the UK.
29 April 2021
A declaratory system, under which EU citizens and their family members automatically acquired an immigration status and right to stay by Act of Parliament, but without any record taken, would cause confusion and leave people struggling to evidence their or their parents’ status (where appropriate) in the future.
Employers and service providers would also struggle to identify those who benefit from residence rights under the Withdrawal Agreement from those moving to the UK after the end of the transition period who do not. This could lead to EU citizens and their family members who have made the UK their home struggling to prove their rights and entitlements here, which is not something we can allow to happen.
By contrast, the EU Settlement Scheme makes it easy for EU citizens resident in the UK by the end of the transition period and their family members to obtain the UK immigration status they need in order to remain here permanently, with the same rights to work, study and access benefits and services as they had before we left the EU.
The latest published statistics for the scheme, to 31 March 2021, show it is performing well, with more than 5.3 million applications received and more than 4.7 million grants of status securing people’s rights in UK law. The status is underpinned in UK law by the European Union (Withdrawal Agreement) Act 2020, which protects the rights here of EU citizens in line with the Withdrawal Agreement.