Permanent residence for EEA nationals

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Apply for Permanent Residence in the UK

Are you an EEA national that wants to apply for a Permanent UK Residence? Permanent Residence is an immigration status granted  EEA nationals who are considered to be a ‘qualified person’ for at least 5 years

Master Legal Services is an expert team of immigration specialists that provides comprehensive immigration packages for both businesses and individuals, based inside and outside the UK. It may also help to read our post about applying for British Citizenship, as well as about British Citizenship for EU Nationals. For further information, feel free to contact our office to speak to an expert on 020 8935 5205 or via Whatsapp on 07710987064.

Permanent residence for EEA nationals – Who is a qualified person?

A qualified person is an EEA national who is in the UK in any of the following categories:

  • a job seeker;
  • a worker;
  • a self-employed person;
  • a self-sufficient person;
  • a student.

The following persons have the right to a Permanent Residence Card in the UK:

  • an EEA national who has resided in the UK for a continuous period of five years;
  • a family member of an EEA national (who is not himself an EEA national) who has resided in the UK with the EEA national in accordance with the 2006 Regulations for a continuous period of five years;
  • a worker or self-employed person who has ceased activity;
  • the family member of a worker or self-employed person who has ceased activity;
  • a person who was the family member of a worker or self-employed person where –
  • the worker or self-employed person has died,
  • the family member resided with him immediately before his death and the worker or self-employed person had resided continuously in the UK for at least the two years immediately before his death, or the death was the result of an accident at work or an occupational disease;
  • a person who:
  • has resided in the UK in accordance with the 2006 Regulations for a continuous period of five years and
  • was, at the end of that period, a family member who has retained the right to the residence.

Permanent residence for EEA nationals – Can the right of permanent residence be lost once acquired?

The short answer to this is Yes,  but only if the EEA national is absent from the UK for a period exceeding two consecutive years.

The periods of absence from the UK that will not affect the right of Permanent Residence are the following:

  • periods of absence from the UK which do not exceed six months in total in any year;
  • periods of absence from the UK on military service; or Your continuity of residence is not affected by:
  • any one absence from the UK not exceeding 12 months for an important reason, such as pregnancy and childbirth, serious illness, study or vocational training, or an overseas posting.

So what are the eligibility criteria?

  • In order to be qualified to apply for permanent residence, EEA nationals are required proof of five years of continuous residence in the UK. During this period, they must exercise their Treaty Rights by contributing to a “Qualified Activity”. This can include self-employment, employment, economic self-sufficiency, or study.

Note that qualifying activities can be joined together to acquire permanent residence providing they cumulate to five continuous years of qualifying evidence.

  • Proof of employment is another important criteria when applying for permanent residence. For a successful outcome it is recommended that the applicant provides:
  • P60 for each year of employment
  • Bank statement and wage slips
  • Confirmation letters from each employer

 Note that if you are unable to provide these documents it is recommended to write an explanation letter with evidence such as P45, a signed contract, a notice of redundancy, a letter of dismissal, or a letter of resignation acceptance.

What if I haven’t been working continuously in the five-year period?

If you have been looking for work in the five-year period, it is recommended that you provide evidence such as:

  • Rejection letter,
  • Copies of job applications
  • Recruitment agency registration
  • Proof of training and interview invitations.

What if I am self-employed?

If you are self-employed, you must register with HRMC for national insurance and income tax as a self-employed individual. You must provide relevant national insurance and tax documents for each financial year.

What if I was/am a student?

If you are or was a student in the five-year period, you must provide evidence proving that you were enrolled in a course study and had satisfactory funds to meet living expenses.

  • Proof of enrollment can come in the form of a letter from the institutions including the name, dates, qualification, and structure of the course.
  • Comprehensive sickness insurance is required

Note that failing to provide proof of insurance will lead to refusal as it having insurance whilst studying in the UK represents evidence of exercising the Treaty Rights to study.

What if I am self-sufficient?

In order to qualify as a self-sufficient applicant, you must provide evidence of a sufficient level of resources and finances as to not become a burden on the state.

Note that to qualify as a self-sufficient applicant you must exceed the maximum level of social assistance to which a British citizen and his family are eligible.

Evidence to support this kind of application can come in the form of a:

  • Bank statements
  • Pension receipt
  • Provision of income from a rental property
  • Lawful wage slips/ evidence of self-employment
  • Building society pass evidence

Note that if you are a self-sufficient student you must provide supporting evidence of a grant or scholarship or evidence signed by a relevant EEA national confirming sufficient financial resources.

Permanent residence for EEA nationals – What are the fees?

The current fee stands at £65.