While the exact terms of Brexit remain unclear, the government has continued to move forward with its EU settlement scheme.
Introduced earlier this year, the scheme applies to EU citizens entering the UK before 2021, or by the date the UK leaves to EU without a deal, currently 31st October 2019. EU citizens must apply by June 2021 to retain their right to remain in the UK after it leaves the European Union.
Those applying must have been living in the UK for five continuous years to be eligible, but can be granted pre-settled status to take them to the five year mark, at which point they can apply for full settled status.
The main points for UK employers to note are:
- Europeans in the UK need to confirm their status to remain in the UK, whether or not a deal on Brexit is reached.
- Employers are under a duty to not discriminate against EU citizens in light of the UK’s decision to leave the EU.
- The current right to work document checks will still apply.
- There are no changes to the rights and status of EU citizens living in the UK until 30th June 2021.
UK employers are being encouraged to support their EU workers through this period of change, including educating, informing and reassuring those affected.
Please note: This article is a commentary on general principles and should not be interpreted as advice for your specific situation.